Spain went into their Women's World Cup semi-final with Sweden boasting two-time Ballon d'Or winner Alexia Putellas and the favourite for the 2023 prize, Aitana Bonmati, in their line up. However, it was yet again their 19-year-old wonderkid who stole the show and guided them to their first final.
Salma Paralluelo has been causing excitement among women's football fans for a couple of years ever since breaking out at Villarreal, and though she is not yet a regular in the Barcelona line up, she is becoming a superstar for the national team during this tournament.
Having scored the extra-time winner against the Netherlands in Friday's quarter-final, she stepped off the bench in Auckland on Tuesday to inspire Jorge Vilda's side to a 2-1 victory and carry a squad that is missing 12 protesting players to the cusp of a first global title.
Paralluelo wasn't the match-winner this time, however. Though she opened the scoring with nine minutes to go, Rebecka Blomqvist's 88th-minute equaliser looked to be sending the game to extra-time, only for Spain captain Olga Carmona to curl in a long-range strike just 60 seconds later.
Despite that, Paralluelo's name is now on everyone's lips heading into the final days of this tournament, and given her current form, don't back against her having a say against either Australia or England on Sunday.
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