As Barça Femení announced the signing of 17-year-old right winger Giovana Queiroz on Friday, we analyse her trajectory and playing style.
This summer has been pretty quiet so far on the transfer front for FC Barcelona Femení. After most of the club’s transfer targets ended up signing for teams elsewhere, it was unclear whether or not Barça Femení were going to sign any players this summer.
But all speculation was put to rest when the club announced the arrival of forward Giovana Queiroz on Friday 17 July after reaching an agreement with Madrid CFF. Giovana had a contract with Madrid CFF until 2022, and Barcelona paid an undisclosed transfer fee for her services. The young Spanish–Brazilian will be decorating the Estadi Johan Cruyff this coming season at only 17 years old and has immaculate experience despite her young age.
Giovana was born in Brazil, later moved to the United States and finally settled in Spain. Versatile and with exquisite technique, nicknamed Gio, she has been an international in the lower categories of Brazil, the USA and Spain. These experiences with this many different team set-ups and environments show her versatility, a valuable asset for any player.
“My reference is the Brazilian Marta. It’s been a long time since I started following her and I really like how she plays“
after signing for Barça
After announcing the renovations of key pieces of the youth squad, Giovana Queiroz arrives in Barcelona to reinforce one of the most illustrious sections of the club. Despite her young age, Queiroz has already gone through the youth ranks of Atlético de Madrid. She debuted for Madrid CFF at just 15 years old in the Primera Iberdrola against Barcelona on 9 December 2018. Being the youngest of the competition, the forward played a total of 13 matches the previous season, nine of them as a starter for Madrid CFF.
With her arrival at the Estadi Johan Cruyff, Barça Femení continues to secure their future. Like the recently renewed Bruna Vilamala, Claudia Pina, Carla Armengol, and Candela Andújar, despite the latter three will be leaving on loan, the presence of Giovana Queiroz allows Barcelona to continue betting on a bright future on the attacking front.
Queiroz mostly plays as a right winger for Madrid CFF and Spain U–17. She is known for her speed and tenacity in the final third. Queiroz is a player who can run on the right side of the pitch for 90 minutes and who won’t stop tracking back when needed in defense. When she debuted against Barcelona in 2018, she outpaced Mapi all the time and was a thorn for the defence on the vulnerable left side of FCB Femení.
Giovana Queiroz will bring pace, threat and instinct to Barça Femení | Photo by AFP7 / Zuma via Imago
She often likes to get behind the defence and try getting one-on-one with the goalkeeper. Her pace and determination in holding the ball is something that needs to be watched out for. She has an excellent eye for goal with an incredible work rate. She is well rounded and clinical in front of goal, making her a threat in the final third.
You can watch some of her best moments from 2018/19 season here.
Barcelona Femení B looks thin in attack with the departure of Teresa Tere Morato and Alba and with the loans of Claudia Pina and Carla Armengol. Gio can play as a right winger, replacing Tere, who already left the club at the end of the last season. Gio also seems to be the perfect replacement for Pina, as she is press resistant and can hold the ball in tight spaces. Barça are adding quality players needed to win the Reto Iberdrola once again.
“It is a dream to play for Barça because it is a very good opportunity to keep growing and succeeding. The objectives I set are to achieve a lot of success, hopefully, win it all, and mostly add a lot to the team. To train with people with such great experience will help me grow and will be very helpful for me”
after signing for Barça
With Candela Andújar already on loan to Valencia and Claudia Pina and Carla Armengol having done so to Sevilla, Barcelona are in need of reliable back-up forwards, especially with the condensed domestic season ahead of them. In terms of her role with the first team, Gio can provide the depth and occasionally some rest for Caroline Graham Hansen.
If everything goes to plan, Gio likely won’t be getting regular playing time with the senior team this season but she can play out the minutes at the end of the matches. Despite the lack of incoming players, things are looking bright for Barça Femení with signings and renewals, and the signing of a talent like Giovana Queiroz only helps bolster a squad with seemingly limitless potential.
Welcome, Giovana Queiroz!
FCB Femeni’s January Player of the Month: Alexia Putellas
Another month down, another couple of wins for FCB Femeni. The team is in smooth sailing towards their second consecutive league title with an otherworldly wins-only season, including 73 goals scored and only 3 conceded. January was a rough month for the Catalan team, however, as they faced multiple match cancellations due to both a freak snowstorm and COVID-19 positives alongside an early Supercopa Femenina exit. Aside from the many downs, there were plenty of positives. FCB Femeni played a history-making match at the Camp Nou, the team’s first competitive match in the iconic stadium, and they dominated in a resounding 5-0 win against local rivals Espanyol Femeni. Later in the month, they smashed Rayo Vallecano Femenino 7-0, and at the end of January, they won the second-ever El Clasico Femenino against Real Madrid, scoring 4 at the Estadi Johan Cruyff.
Given the many iconic moments in this month alone, it was never going to be an easy choice. Plenty of players showed up big this month. Asisat Oshoala seems to have returned to form after a rough few months, scoring four goals and having many quality performances aside from her goalscoring. Melanie Serrano has had one of her best seasons in recent memory, and her performances this month were no exception. But if there was one player who came in clutch and made history, it was Alexia Putellas. She started the year strongly by being the first-ever woman to score a competitive goal at the Camp Nou. Her free kick in the dying minutes of the Supercopa Femenina saved Barcelona from going out in regular time against Atletico Madrid. At the end of the month, she drew first blood in the second-ever Clasico, imposing herself against Los Blancos with relative ease. Aside from her goalscoring, she once again had multiple dominant performances in terms of her assisting, passing, and attacking play. Once again, Alexia Putellas is deservedly our player of the month for January.
Primera Iberdrola – RCD Espanyol Femeni (Camp Nou) (6/1/2021): 5-0
• Minutes: 90
• 1 Goal
January 6th marked a historic day for Barcelona as they entered the Camp Nou pitch for the first time after 50 years. The Blaugranas started the game on a bright note with Alexia dictating the play. At the 4th minute of the game, Alexia had a tame shot at the goal following a cut-back from Melanie Serrano. As the shots racked up in the beginning minutes, it looked like Barca would follow this season’s pattern of scoring an early goal. However, Barca were devoid of any clear cut chances after that, and Espanyol started to grow defensively as time went on.
The second big chance fell to Alexia Putellas in the 43rd minute after a cutback this time from Patri following a beautiful couple of moves inside the box. Again, Alexia’s shot was too weak with her right foot and it found the hands of the goalkeeper. However, Alexia made up for her misses when the turning point of the game came in the 45th minute. During a stoppage-time corner, Alexia raced past the marker to head the ball into the far corner of the net, giving Barca some much-needed breathing room going into the half-time. Barca cruised to victory in the second half with a scoreline of 5-0 after goals from Melanie Serrano, Marta Torrejon, Lieke Martens, and Ana Maria Crnogocevic, which ended any hopes of a comeback for the local rivals.
Spanish Supercopa Femenino: Semi Finals – Atletico Madrid Femenino (A) (13/1/2021): 1-1 ( 3-1 PT)
• Minutes: 120
• Goals: 1
Barca played Atléti in the Spanish Supercup semifinal on January 13th. Both the teams were going into the game after Spain’s freak snowstorm, “Filomena,” canceled all the league’s Madrid-based weekend matches. Atlético Madrid announced the re-hiring of manager Dani Gonzalez on the eve of the matchday, sparking a lot of excitement going into the game. The game followed a similar pattern to that of the one played in August when Barça defeated Las Colchoneras to clinch a spot in the UWCL semifinals. As expected, Atleti defended with 9 women at the back and played long balls to Ludmila whenever they had a chance to counter.
Even though Barcelona dominated the game, they failed to score and paid for their lack of effectiveness when Atléti were awarded a penalty in the 66th minute. Merel van Dongen then converted it to give Madrid the advantage. It looked like everything was lost until the 90th minute when Alexia was brought down at the edge of the box. Although it looked like Barcelona was going to lose in regular time, the midfielder had other ideas and took matters into her own hands. Alexia scored a sublime free-kick past a diving Hedvig Lindahl who, until then, was keeping Barca at bay for 90 excellent minutes. In the end, it was not enough for Barca as they paid the price for not converting their chances, also being kept down by some harsh refereeing decisions not going their way. The Catalans ended up losing to Atléti on penalty kicks and were knocked out of the tournament, thereby missing their first possible title of the year.
Primera Iberdrola – Rayo Vallecano (H) (20/1/2021): 7-0
• Minutes: 72
• Goals: 2
FCB Femeni came into the game after their tough semifinal loss to Atletico Madrid in the Spanish Supercup, hoping to get back into their rhythm. Barça scored an early goal inside 5 minutes after Alexia’s header was parried into the feet of Jennifer Hermoso. After the first goal, it was one-way traffic for the home side as they punctured Rayo’s defense with another 3 goals- Alexia being the catalyst of each of them.
Alexia scored her first goal of the game following Melanie’s cross. She stayed in position and gracefully chipped over the keeper’s head to double Barca’s lead. She remained a key part of the midfield in tracking back and dictating the entirety of the half and scored her second goal following a well-worked team move. In the 40th minute of the game, Asisat Oshoala was sent through by Jennifer Hermoso, and Asisat teed up Caroline Graham-Hansen to score from close range. However, Hansen’s shot was blocked and the ball fell into the path of Alexia for an easy tap-in. Barça easily swept past mid-table Rayo to remain top of the table after the matchday.
Primera Iberdrola – Real Madrid (H) (31/1/2021): 4-1
• Minutes: 87
• Goals: 1
• Second Assists:1
Barça faced their new league rival Real Madrid Femenino in the last game of the month, 11 days after their match against Rayo due to multiple match cancellations. This was expected to be a totally different game compared to their first encounter, as Los Blancos have grown into the league and were occupying the second-place position at the time. All the match previews indicated that Real Madrid were in great form, recording only 3 losses in 15 games, with a much more balanced and cohesive team than their first game against the Blaugranas. Additionally, if the team from Spain’s capital won at the Estadi Johan Cruyff, they would’ve gone to the top of the league.
The match started with Real Madrid and Barcelona both going on the offense and trying to assert themselves. Despite Madrid entering the match bravely and attacking well, Barcelona scored first just 14 minutes into the match. Once again, it was the captain, Alexia Putellas, who kicked it off for the Catalan team. Alexia was intuitive in collecting the ball at the edge of the box and scoring a blistering strike to the top left of the net that Misa Rodriguez struggled to get a hand on. From then, it was a similar pattern as the first Clásico, and Barça advanced to a 3 goal lead by the end of the first half. The match proved that Madrid’s women have improved a lot, but they were never a match to the 2019-20 champions as Barca ran out winners 4-1 at the end of full-time.
When Alexia is fit and firing, there isn’t a way to stop her from creating chances and scoring goals. After her breakout out season last year, she’s continued her form and is having yet another world-class season. Alexia only continues to get better and better, and with a lot of important competitions in the next few months, her performances will be integral to the success of the club.