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Female footballers in Chile established their own players’ association, Anjuff. The organisation is collaborating with the Chilean players’ association and FIFPro member, Sifup.

Three important women behind the establishment of Anjuff are Iona Rothfeld, Christiane Endler and Romina Parraguire.

Iona Rothfeld is the interim President. The University Catolica and national team player is also a law student.

“Women’s football has an amateur status, but we are under the wings of professional institutions”, she said in Ultimas Noticias.

She added in Pelotero: “Only a handful of clubs, more in specific the top teams, have the finances for things such as a technical staff, facilities, logistics. We are depending on clubs’ goodwill. There are no regulations to force clubs to provide basic resources.”

To illustrate the lack of progress, Rothfeld refers to the status of the national team, which has not played any match since 2014 (according to rumors due to lack of finances) and has dropped in the world ranking from 41 to 133.

Rothfeld: “We have a common objective, we have to work for better conditions for women’s national football and defend what we do on a daily basis. We deserve respect for the development of our sport.”

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Fernanda Pinilla (Universidad de Chile), Iona Rothfeld (Universidad Catolica), Camila Garcia (former player), Romina Parraguirre (former player) and Javiera Moreno (Universidad Catolica)

Christiane Endler is one of the board members. She used to be the captain of the national team, when it was still playing. The 25-year old goalkeeper is Chile’s most well-known female player. This summer she moved to Valencia, her second team in Europe after Chelsea. In 2012 Endler won the women’s Copa Libertadores with Colo Colo, the most important club title in South America.

Executive secretary Romina Parraguire is a former goalkeeper and national team player. The 25-year old recently finished her active football career. “I retired due to psychological fatigue. It was tired of always being in the same situation. I cannot live on experiences, memories and friendships alone”, Parraguire explained in Ultimas Noticias.

Anjuff, which is supported by players from among others Universidad Católica, Colo Colo, Universidad de Chile, Santiago Morning, Unión La Calera and Audax Italiano, has drawn up a list of topics to tackle. One of the main issues is travelling for away matches, as such trips can be over a thousand kilometers.

Sifup supports the female players. Its headquarters was used for meetings between the Anjuff management and the players, while Sifup also offered its advice and expertise.

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