Photos provided by Gloria Villamayor.

Gloria Villamayor: “We don’t just play for the love of money”

Gloria Villamayor interview on Women’s Soccer United.

With a keen eye for goal, Gloria Villamayor is a huge asset in attack for both club and her country, Paraguay.

Currently playing for Real Oviedo Femenino, she previously played for Colo-Colo of the Chile Women’s Football Championship.

Among her personal accolades is winning the golden boot at the 2010 Copa Libertadores Femenina.

In an exclusive interview as part of our South American series on Women’s Soccer United, Gloria shared her experiences playing in Europe, her thought s on the women’s game in her country and the South American team’s chances at the World Cup.

Women’s Soccer United: When did you first start playing football?

Gloria Villamayor: I started playing football on the streets with my siblings and then at 6 or 7 years I went to a football academy called Pinoza.

WSU: You are currently defending Real Oviedo in Spain. Could you tell us about the experience of playing in Europe?

Gloria: The experience of playing in Europe has been very nice so far. The game is more intense and you can improve a lot there if you come from a latin American country.

Women’s Soccer United: Besides Paraguay, you also played in other countries in South America, such as Chile and Colombia. How was the experience of playing in these countries and what were the differences and similarities did you notice of women’s football in those countries compared to Paraguay?

Gloria: You can see the difference at an economic and organisational level. The competition is also different. Just that. Because nowadays Paraguay has its own league, we have more teams, more support and that makes me happy.

Women’s Soccer United: How do you see the reality of women’s football in Paraguay?

Gloria: The reality in Paraguay is totally different now. Since CONMEBOL stipulated that the teams that wanted to compete in Copa Libertadores should have their women’s team, the league in Paraguay has changed a lot. There are more teams and very good players. That makes the league more attractive and competitive. Years ago there were just a few of them.

Women’s Soccer United: In your opinion, what needs to be done to develop women’s football in your country?

Gloria: We need to support the clubs that are investing in women’s football. Maybe they don’t see the profits now but in time women’s football will grow and grow and the clubs will get their reward.

Women’s Soccer United: What needs to be done for women’s football to develop as a whole in Latin America?

Gloria: Publicity, support, search for sponsors, we need a broadcast for the matches, double headers with the men’s teams so the people can see that women’s football can also be passionate and much more than that, because we don’t just play for the love of money.

Women’s Soccer United: How do you think it will be the participation of the South American teams in the next Women’s World Cup?

Gloria: I think the South American teams are preparing very well, at least Chile. They have had international matches and their preparation will be noticed in the World Cup. Their federation is investing in them and that’s very important for the development of football in that country

Thank you to contributors @melinae07 and Izzy @IzzyWoso

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