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Atletico Femenino update: Manolo Cano’s side ends season on a high with Copa de la Reina triumph

A stunning comeback against bitter rivals handed Atlético a second cup success.

Real Madrid V Atletico De Madrid - Copa De La Reina Photo By Oscar J. Barroso/Europa Press via Getty Images

The Copa de la Reina was the last opportunity for Atlético Madrid Femenino to salvage their season and add another trophy to their cabinet.

That window was almost sealed off until Lucia Moral’s 88th-minute goal against rivals Real Madrid served as a sliding doors moment for Atlético.

Estefania Banini then sent the final into extra-time with a 95th-minute leveller with a delightful freekick. In the extra 30 minutes of play, neither side managed to clinch the victory, with the eventual winner having to be determined via a penalty shoot-out.

While Atlético missed only one penalty, Real Madrid failed to convert three times from the spot, and the Rojiblancas won their second Copa de la Reina trophy.

The club honored this triumph at the Cívitas Metropolitano before the start of the season’s penultimate La Liga match between the Colchoneros and Real Sociedad, a success that reflected how Atlético Femenino flipped a switch after Manolo Cano’s arrival, with the coach now agreeing to extend his stay at the club to another year. In his 22 games in charge, Cano registered 13 wins, seven draws and just two defeats.

Atletico de Madrid v Real Sociedad - LaLiga Santander Photo by Denis Doyle/Getty Images

The objective is loud and clear – qualify for Europe in 2023/24.

“The way we have finished the season is very important, and we want to start the new one with the same momentum in order to qualify to the Women’s Champions League,” Cano said after his renewal earlier this month.

“It is the place where I want to be, and to be able to continue with a job that we started five and a half months ago. I am very happy to be able to continue in a club that for me is my home.”

Banini, another Copa de la Reina hero, also signed a contract extension for another season following the final.

“I am very happy, especially now that we have achieved something very nice. I am happy to continue being part of this family,” said the Argentina player, who played 32 of the 34 games this season.

On the other hand, a number of players have bid farewell to the club, including Virginia Torrecilla. The midfielder, who overcame a brain tumour, leaves as her contract expires.

Real Madrid V Atletico De Madrid - Copa De La Reina
Virginia Torrecilla of Atletico de Madrid celebrates the victory with the winner medal during the Spanish Women Cup, Copa de la Reina, Final football match played between Real Madrid and Atletico de Madrid at Municipal de Butarque stadium on May 27, 2023, in Leganes, Madrid, Spain.
Photo By Oscar J. Barroso/Europa Press via Getty Images

Torrecilla joined in 2019 after four seasons in France with Montpellier, and after overcoming her personal battle, she took to the field again in last January’s Spanish Super Cup.

Maitane and Barbara Latorre are also leaving the club, with Maitane having played 23 games while Latorre just 16 in an injury-plagued campaign for her.