Amy Rodriguez puts away the winning goal. Photo Credit: David S. Dawson
U.S. Soccer News: U.S. Women’s National Team Wins With Late Goal
Fans Cheer @ Rio Tinto Stadium as U.S. Women's National Team Defeat Canada 2-1
The U.S. Women’s National team handed Canada a 2-1 defeat in the U.S. team’s Olympic send off match in front of 16,508 excited fans. It was a solid match from both teams, but a blunder by Canada’s defense in the first half, a controversial save by Hope Solo and a late goal by Amy Rodriguez sealed Canada's fate.
The U.S. came out strong pushing a hard attack on the Canadian defense. Canadian coach John Herdman said the US team comes out strong in the first half of every match and Canada’s strategy today was to try and hold the U.S. off through the first half, "they are likely the team to be taking the Gold, we wanted to show well against them and show that we are capable of competing with them."
Against a dominating US attack for much of the first half Canada did just that, with one glaring exception. US Midfielder Megan Rapinoe continually penetrated down the right flank, beating her defenders and punching crosses into dangerous territory right in front of Canada’s goal.
After 13 minutes of pounding down the right side, a Rapinoe cross found Canada’s Carmelina Moscato attempting to deflect the ball. It appeared she heard goalkeeper Erin McLeod call for the ball at the last minute. Moscato attempted to pull back but was already committed and her deflection redirected the cross toward goal, catching McLeod off the line as she was making an attempt to intercept the cross.
Canada did not let the own goal slow them down, however, and they continued to thwart the American offense for the rest of the first half. The Canadians made some real chances for themselves on the attack, and in a play that will likely make Canadian fans fall into the goal line technology camp the Canadians almost scored the tying goal in the first minute of added time in the first half. A poorly deflected ball found Solo scrambling desperately across the goal mouth to stop the slow rolling ball from crossing the goal line.
Canadian fans, and some of the players, obviously thought the ball had gone in but the ruling on the field was that Solo’s effort paid off. Moments later with the crowd excited from the efforts of Solo, US forward Alex Morgan found herself in front of what seemed to be a wide open goal. Morgan took the shot and in a flash Canadian defender Lauren Sesselmann managed to get onto the goal line and make the save deflecting the shot out of play effectively ending the first half with a 1-0 lead for the US.
If the U.S. dominated the first half, the second half felt like a completely different game. The U.S. attack seemed less precise and the defense found themselves working harder against a Canadian offense that seemed to come alive out of the locker room.
In the 56th minute the Canadian offense finally found an opening in the US defense as team Captain Christine Sinclair found a way past Heather Mitts and drove a crossbar reflected shot over Solo for the tying goal.
The Canadian goal took a lot of the energy out of the crowd and much of the next 10 minutes were played before a stunned American fanbase.
In the 84th minute Amy Rodriguez, who came in for Morgan in the 49th minute, took the ball, which was bouncing all over the box and put the game winning goal into the net.
Abby Wambach was credited with the assist.
The stadium became a roar of excitement, an excitement that was elevated even higher as the U.S. Women ran to the corner and proceeded to make “snow angels” in the grass. Rodriguez said, “We wanted to pay tribute to all the fans who were here when we played in the snow and made snow angels to celebrate. It’s a nod to the local fans here who came out way back then in the cold...a way to say thanks.”
|Rachel Buehler beats Canadian Goalkeeper Erin McLeod for a ball in the air and puts it right through her hands
The ladies now take a few days off before heading to London where they will open the Olympic games on July 25th with a Group G match against France at Hampden Park in Glasgow.
All Photo Credit: David S. Dawson
David S. Dawson writes for YouWorkout Digital Magazine - A LifeApps® Digital Media Publication
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