Spain Senior National Female team lifted the World Cup after beating England Women National team 1-0.
With this defeat, England’s wait to win a first Women’s World Cup title goes on.
The Lionesses, looking to become the first England senior side since the men’s team in 1966 to win the World Cup, suffered heartbreak after being outplayed by a Spanish side full of flair and creativity.
Spain captain Olga Carmona slotted the winner past goalkeeper Mary Earps in the first half, capitalising after England’s Lucy Bronze lost possession in midfield.
England manager Sarina Wiegman, who has now lost two successive World Cup finals, introduced Lauren James and Chloe Kelly at half-time but Spain maintained control despite the Lionesses’ best efforts.
Earps, who won the golden glove as best goalkeeper at the tournament, made several stunning saves, none better than from the penalty spot to deny Jenni Hermoso in the second half.
The Manchester City stopper moved early to her left and caught Hermoso’s effort, the penalty having being awarded for handball against midfielder Keira Walsh following a lengthy video assistant referee review.
But it was one step too far for the European champions, who lost just their second match in two years under Wiegman.
Spain are crowned champions for the first time despite going into the tournament under a cloud of controversy following a dispute between players and the Spanish football federation.
Both teams came into the final full of confidence, having improved on their performances throughout the tournament.
England, who played in front of a sold-out Wembley crowd last summer to win the Euros final, started brightly, testing Spain’s defence with balls over the top and in behind.
Manchester City forward Lauren Hemp was direct and aggressive, and had England’s best chance but her curling effort from 15 yards hit the crossbar.
However Spain, packed with Barcelona stars who won their second Women’s Champions League title this season, imposed their quality and worked out how to deal with England’s high press.
They dominated large chunks of the game, exposing the spaces left by England’s attacking full-backs and took their chance when Bronze cut inside from the right and was stopped by a wall of red in the centre circle.
Spain intelligently switched play to their left and Carmona ran on to a simple pass from Mariona Caldentey before stroking the ball low past a diving Earps.
Spain had several chances to extend their lead – Earps blocked shots from Ona Batlle, Caldentey and Alba Redondo in each half – while Salma Paralluelo’s first-time strike brushed the post on the stroke of half-time.
It was a deserved victory for Spain but it will feel like a missed opportunity for the Lionesses, who have found a way to win so often under Wiegman but could not find the answers in the biggest game in their history.