Colombian hopes on Andrade's shoulders
When Lady Andrade has the ball at her feet, not only does she bamboozle her opponents but she often leaves the crowd wide-eyed with amazement too. The 18-year-old Colombian has already proved to be one of the stars of the FIFA U-20 Women's World Cup 2010 in Germany with some dazzling performances in the group stages.
Hope dies last Unfortunately, however, it looks as though the cultured forward's tournament could soon be coming to an end. A 1-1 draw with France and a 3-1 defeat to Germany means coach Ricardo Rozo's charges are currently third in the Group A table, with qualification for the quarter-finals now out of their hands.
"We were very disappointed with the defeat to Germany," Andrade told FIFA.com in an exclusive interview. "Now we're hoping we can beat Costa Rica, and also that we score plenty of goals." The Colombians must also pray that Germany beat the French in the group's other fixture if they are to stand any chance of snatching second spot.
Fondness for tricks Andrade has no problem dealing with pressure situations such as this. The Liga Bogota starlet showed that early on when netting a late equaliser in her side's opener against Les Bleuettes. Even in defeat to Germany, Andrade proved a valuable outlet for her team-mates and a constant threat in the final third. Particularly in the final stages of the match, the talented No16 caused the hosts all manner of problems thanks to her willingness to run at opposition defenders.
The Colombians will be hoping for more of the same against Costa Rica who, after failing to pick up a single point from their opening two matches, are already consigned to an early exit. And as one of just a handful of players at Germany 2010 who can conjure up a moment of magic, and when Andrade is in the mood, the South Americans need fear no-one. "It's my way of playing football, the way I feel. I love dribbling and tricks. I just do it spontaneously," she explained.
High hopes So it comes as no surprise when Andrade tells FIFA.com that her footballing idol is Ronaldinho. Similarly to the Brazilian superstar, the Colombian appears to make the game look so easy out on the pitch, while defenders cannot afford to take their eyes off her for a second. Still, it is not just her extraordinary skills which have made Andrade one of the standout players of Germany 2010.
The Colombian also possesses a huge amount of ambition and is one of the biggest personalities in Las Cafeteras' squad. "We believe we can still reach the final here in Germany," she said boldly as the interview concluded. "We need to win our final group match and then we'll have to see what happens."