NEWCASTLE, England — Colombia's rising star Yoreli Rincon, called the "new Marta," said Tuesday she may not continue playing for the national team if coach Ricardo Rozo remains in charge.
Her comments came after Colombia was eliminated from the women's Olympic football tournament following a 1-0 loss to France in Newcastle.
Rincon, often compared to Brazil's five-time world player of the year Marta, played for the first time at the London Games after replacing injured teammate Catalina Usme just before halftime at St. James Park.
The 19-year-old Rincon said that she doesn't think she will be able to keep playing if Rozo stays in charge, but added that it's too early to make any decision.
"I'm going to wait," she said. "But I don't think it will be possible to have a relationship with this coach after what happened. I personally don't have any problems with him but we don't get along well. I don't know what's going to happen. I don't know if he is going to continue as the coach or if I will continue as a player. I just don't know right now."
Rozo had been saying Rincon wasn't fit, but the player said she had fully recovered from a left foot injury before the tournament and was in condition to start from the beginning. She said she still doesn't understand why she wasn't given a chance to play in the previous games.
"I had been playing well, I still don't believe in what happened," she said. "But for me it's all fine. I trust in my potential. When I got into the match I showed what I can do on the field."
After the match ended, Rozo went straight to Rincon to congratulate her and gave her a kiss on the cheek.
"I was completely surprised when that happened," Rincon said. "I really didn't expect that."
There had been plenty of suggestions back in Colombia of a conflict between Rincon and Rozo, prompting her father to say in a radio interview that her daughter was in perfect shape and claim that she was being "persecuted by the coach after leaving the club he coaches and signing a professional contract in Brazil.
Rozo had said there was "absolutely no conflict" and nodded his head when asked whether the accusations were invented by the father.
Colombia's Olympic tournament ended after three straight losses in Group G — 2-0 to North Korea, 3-0 to two-time defending Olympic champion United States and the 1-0 defeat to the French.
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