Silver for Argentina’s women after penalty heartbreak at Panamerican Games (VIDEO)

Argentina have suffered their fair share of cup final agony in recent years but just like Lionel Messi and Co, La Albiceleste’s women fell just short in their quest for glory. A penalty shootout defeat to Colombia after a 1-1 draw saw Argentina take home the silver medal but despite the frustration, the overwhelming emotion is one of pride after another hugely positive campaign.

Manager Carlos Borrello had come under fire in the build-up to the tournament after leaving out captain Estefanía Banini due to questions made by the player over the coach’s alleged negative tactics. Although the tournament in Lima has been a success, it was another safety-first approach from Borrello.

Colombia led just after the half hour mark through striker María Usme but the lead didn’t last long. A towering header by centre back Agustina Barroso at a free-kick levelled things before the break.

A hard fought second half produced no further goals and during an additional 30 minutes Argentina hung on. Colombia struck the woodwork and substitute Milagros Menéndez was sent off for a second yellow card as La Albiceleste forced the final into a shootout.

Neither side missed as they pushed through their initial five and the fate of the game now came down to one unfortunate player. Carolina Arias stuck away Colombia’s seventh and when Gabriela Chávez fired over the crossbar, Las Cafeteras were champions.

It might only be a runners-up finish for Argentina but following on from the World Cup, the future of women’s football is looking brighter than ever and the AFA must ensure they this year is a springboard to greater things.

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