Filipinas’ World Cup dream cut short, but Sarina Bolden’s message inspires football fans

By: Mary Villegas - Inquirer Manila | July 31,2023 - 07:25 PM

Sarina Bolden at FIFA Women’s World Cup.

Sarina Bolden at FIFA Women’s World Cup. | Photo from B/R Football Twitter

Filipinos are some of the happiest in Asia, so despite watching our beloved ‘Filipinas’ come up short in the FIFA Women’s World Cup on July 30, Sunday, we’ll surely be back—harder, better, stronger, faster (to quote Daft Punk, no less).

With the weight of the entire nation resting on their shoulders, the skillful Filipinas never failed to show us their unrelenting spirit and passion for the sport.

The team’s World Cup debut all started with the dream of competing against the world’s best on the global stage. On Jan. 31, 2022, the Filipinas began weaving this aspiration when they won over Chinese Taipei in India, setting the stage for their World Cup hopes.

And at the heart of this inspiring journey is Filipino-American striker Sarina Bolden, who opened the World Cup door for the team when they faced formidable opponents and hometown favorites New Zealand.

After an opening-round loss to Switzerland, 2-0, the Filipinas recovered in impressive fashion and tasted their first-ever World Cup victory over New Zealand after Bolden scored the winning goal and forever etched her name in World Cup history.

The Filipinas’ fairytale run ended when they were trounced, 6-0, by former World Cup champions Norway. Bolden herself was in awe of their strength and achievements, but despite this, her resilience and optimism remain.

“I’d just say that if you have a dream, go after it. Work your hardest. There’s gonna be downs, but if you truly want to achieve your dream, go for it.”

Filipinas fans spreading love and pride

Let’s say it again: Football is not just about wins and losses but also about inspiring a nation. The Filipinas may have not achieved the ultimate glory, but social media went abuzz with full support and gratitude, thanking the team for representing the Philippines on the world stage.

In the middle of the applause, Twitter user @jinnorufino resonates with the sentiments of many Filipinos, saying, “Maraming Salamat Filipinas! You made the country proud. Keep your heads up high. You made history…”

Another user, @llongboan, tweeted, “Thank you, Filipinas, for showing the strength of the diaspora in sports and for rekindling our national pride at a challenging time in our history.”

While @amtcfc was in patriotic mode tweeting a photo of a banner during the PH-Norway game, “Thank you Filipinas for making us dream.”

Another user, @magellofenis, tweeted, “Definitely not the best result we expected, but we made it to the World Cup, and this is just the first of many to come.”

The outpour of support is heartwarming and shows Filipinos aren’t one to back down. With love and gratitude, see you again in 2027, ladies!


Philippines bows out of Women’s World Cup as Norway advances to KO stage

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Filipinas eye takedown of fancied Norwegians for place in KO stage

Filipinas hope historic World Cup stint will be game-changer for Philippine football


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TAGS: FIFA Women's World Cup, Filipinas, New Zealand, Sarina Bolden

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