WOMEN'S WORLD CUP 2023
Who is Colombia’s best player so far at the Women’s World Cup? Linda Caicedo, Mayra Ramírez...
The Real Madrid winger has shone in the early games at the World Cup and shown the world that the hype is real.
The ball always prefers to stick to the feet of those who treat it the kindest and Linda Caicedo is showing why, with Colombia, she is the player with the highest chance of telling it what to do. At just 18 years of age, the Real Madrid winger’s experience on the pitch is proving key for her national team and has driven the side through the group stages and onto the knockout rounds.
The winger, despite her small stature and physical presence, has been able to shine on the world stage, and has battled through various injury scares after coming up against clearly bigger adults on the pitch across the three games played so far.
Linda Caicedo has shown her class in all three games
She now has 5 days to recover fully from the multitude of knocks and get ready to fire up the engines once again, this time in the Round of 16 against surprise package, Jamaica, who got two draws against France and Brazil.
Linda played 90 minutes in each of the three group games and was one of the attacking focal points of the team. She scored two goals, one against South Korea and one against Germany, as well as being a constant threat on the left and down the middle.
The player was always driving her side forward and causing danger for the opposition with her unpredictable dribbling ability as well as her ferocious shooting capacity, as shown in the incredible golazo against Germany, which Colombia eventually won thanks to a ludicrous last-gasp header.
What is Linda Caicedo’s main quality?
Her passing is not to be underestimated, either, and against Morocco she was a nonstop threat, always looking for gaps in the African defence to filter through balls to the players who were rushing in behind.
Linda is hugely respected by her opponents and is a player that is often singled out by her counterparts ahead of clashes against Colombia; her rivals well aware of the danger she possess in her boots. She is often marked by more than one player, creating space for her teammates.
She is ready for the next round, and her dream is to play in a FIFA final, something the attacker already knows well, as she played - and lost - against Spain in the u-17 World Cup.
A special mention goes to...
Mayra Ramírez. Despite the fact that Colombia’s strong performances mean that there are various players who could be selected for special mentions, Mayra Ramírez has shone with her intensity and insistence to keep on running whatever the weather. The number nine is without a doubt one of the key figures in Colombia’s engine room and is a ‘modern’ forward, one that contributes as the first line of the defence, as well as in attack.
One versus one she is a huge threat, something that increases in probability and danger given Linda’s capacity to play sly passes through the lines. The only thing missing so far from Ramírez’s game is a clinical finishing capability, but that may come as she finds her feet at the showpiece tournament.
Against South Korea, Germany and Morocco she had chances to score: in the final moment of the last game she missed two golden chances, but her play with her back to goal is sensational and her ability to break the defensive structures of her opponents with her physicality is not to be underestimated in this side. These qualities will be fundamental in Colombia’s game plan if they are to get past Jamaica, who are yet to concede in the entire tournament so far.