"When you reach them, you realize that the dreams that seemed unattainable when you were little are closer than you can imagine", says Amanda Sampedro, who wears the shirt no. 10 for Atlético de Madrid and is one of the top players in the Iberdrola League, in conversation with the spanish company. "Since Iberdrola joined the League, we can see how it is growing. This is the way. We need sponsorship to follow this path", she adds.
Neoenergia, by sponsoring the Brazilian women's soccer team and the Brazilian Championship, is in solidarity with this journey. "We believe in equality in all fields. We understand a lot about electrical networks and now we are designing another network, invisible, but equally solid, to unite everyone who contributes to the advance towards equality, in an area of as much impact as sport", says Mario Ruiz Tagle, CEO of Neoenergia.
With the shirt of the Brazilian national team, she scored more goals than Pelé – she has already scored 96, one more than the King of Football. After playing in France, Germany, Sweden, USA, Russia, Korea and China, top scorer Cristiane Rozeira, 36, decided it was time to return to the stadiums in Brazil.
The star of the Santos team, with more than 1 million followers on Instagram, explained what motivated her:
“Now I'm here to help develop women's football in Brazil and make the sport go even further", the athlete told Folha de São Paulo, recalling having received proposals from Barcelona and Lyon. The desire to return to live close to her mother and family also weighed heavily on this decision.
The return of the stars, the emergence of talented newcomers and the proximity of the Olympics fill up this season with expectations and hopes. To make things even better, in 2020 the CBF announced that the men's and women's teams would receive the same daily rates and awards.
In the clubs' payroll, the differences are still big – in billing and in transfers to the stars. Club budgets, for example, typically reserve only 1% for the women's football department. A big club in São Paulo recently had a payroll of R$ 17 million for men; on the other hand, the female payroll was around R$ 170 thousand.
Even the fastest players in Brazil, however, know that consistency is worth more than rushing in terms of investments and development of the sport.
This is the case with Victoria “Vic" Albuquerque, 23, a star for Corinthians and the Brazilian national team. Vic even scored a goal against Flamengo in just 14 seconds. But she is more patient about the future of women's football: after all, she doesn't forget that her mother, a former goalkeeper of the 1990s, could only play in regional tournaments in Brasília – big events, like the Campeonato Brasileiro, only started to emerge in from 2013.
“The changes have been happening", said the skillful Corinthians attacking midfielder, who has already won the Paulista, Brazilian and Libertadores teams with Timão. “Today there are women in the highest positions in the CBF, and I have high expectations for Brazilian women's football. The girls who are playing abroad have come to play here, and this makes values a lot our football. From now on, I know that it will only be progress for women's football. Of all the titles we've won, this is perhaps the greatest of all: equality in football".
Professional women's football, which was in its infancy yesterday, is now taking great steps towards national consecration.