Join Now  | 
Home About Contact Us Privacy & Security Advertise
Soccer America Daily Soccer World Daily Special Edition Around The Net Soccer Business Insider College Soccer Reporter Youth Soccer Reporter Soccer on TV Soccer America Classifieds Game Report
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalk Soccer America Confidential Youth Soccer Insider World Cup Watch
RSS Feeds Archives Manage Subscriptions Subscribe
Order Current Issue Subscribe Manage My Subscription Renew My Subscription Gift Subscription
My Account Join Now
Tournament Calendar Camps & Academies Soccer Glossary Classifieds
Time for U.S. women to shine
by Ridge Mahoney, September 21st, 2007 7AM
Subscribe to Soccer America Daily

MOST READ
TAGS:  women's national team, women's world cup

MOST COMMENTED

So far at the Women's World Cup, the USA has been more bruising than brilliant, but it might use the quarterfinal against England to refine its game a bit. England has reached its first quarterfinal by beating Argentina and tying Japan and Germany, and while it and Australia can be considered the weakest teams to reach this stage, there's been enough uncertainty in the U.S. game to gauge the English chances at something more than nil when they meet on Saturday (8 am ET, ESPN & TeleFutura). Soccer America's Ridge Mahoney previews the USA-England clash and the other three quarterfinals. ...

The Americans conceded two bad goals to North Korea while Abby Wambach had stitches sewn into a scalp wound, yet the loss of a forward for 10 minutes shouldn't trigger defensive chaos.

Sweden's pressure troubled the USA early before the Americans rode two lethal finishes from Wambach to win, 2-0. Nigeria conceded a deflected goal in the first minute and never did the U.S. get the second goal it should have scored although it held on to win and take first place in Group B.

Heather O'Reilly (North Korea) and Lori Chalupny (Nigeria) have scored goals in addition to Wambach's three, but attacking impetus from the midfield has been sporadic. Kristine Lilly served a nice ball from the left flank for Wambach to slam home the second goal against Sweden and a mis-cleared Lilly cross led to the equalizer against North Korea, and that effective wide play will be essential in the knockout rounds.

England has its own main threat, striker Kelly Smith, a 12-year veteran of the English team at age 28 who attended college in the U.S. and played in the defunct WUSA for Philadelphia. O'Reilly played with Smith, Rachel Yankey and Rachel Unitt for the New Jersey Wildcats club team.

Smith scored both English goals in the 2-2 tie with Japan and netted twice more in a 6-1 demolition of Argentina.

"Kelly Smith is a real key attacking player for them but they have some other very good individuals as well," said U.S. coach Greg Ryan.

England midfielder Fara Williamsis suspended for the quarterfinal and her absence should enable the U.S. to dominate midfield, where both Sweden and North Korea wielded control at times in the first round.

"I think she has played very well in this World Cup, in the game against Germany she was fantastic," said Ryan of Williams. "England represent a real challenge to us. They attack well, they defend well and they're good on their set pieces. There's not a lot of chinks in the armor."

GERMANY vs. NORTH KOREA
Saturday, 5 a.m., ESPN2, Galavision

The quick, aggressive North Koreans don't have the experience or polish of 2003 world champion Germany, yet they've shown the same confidence and zeal at the World Cup with which they overran their opposition in the Asian qualifiers. Birgit Prinz, Kerstin Garefrekes and Kerstin Stegemann are among many veterans of the 2003 team and their poise may be sorely tested.

NORWAY vs. CHINA
Sunday, 5 a.m., ESPN2, Galavision

The host recovered after being blasted, 4-0, by Brazil in the second group game to advance by beating New Zealand, 2-0. Yet it scraped past Denmark, 3-2, in the opener and Norway is better than Denmark.

China fell at this stage as host back in the 1991 inaugural world championship, 1-0, to Sweden. If it can ride the crowd's frenzy it can prevail against a most resilient opponent but it may lack the nerve the Norwegians always seem to have. They began the tournament by rallying from a 1-0 deficit with goals by Ragnhild Gulbrandsen and Ane Stangeland Horpestad to beat Canada, 2-1, and rebounded to thrash Ghana, 7-2, after surrendering a late equalizer in a 1-1 tie with Australia.

BRAZIL vs. AUSTRALIA
Sunday, 8 a.m., ESPN, Univision
.
The winner of this game plays the USA-England survivor and the delineation between favorite and underdog is just as clear. Marta, Cristiane, Pretinha, et al have dazzled, though only in stoppage time did they dispatch Denmark, 1-0, in the group finale.
Australia stunned Canada with a stoppage-time equalizer for the 2-2 tie that edged the Aussies, again like the English, into their first quarterfinal after they'd scored in the 83rd minute (Lisa de Vanna) to tie Norway.
They drew North Korea, 0-0, in the Asian qualifiers and slugged out that tie with Norway in the group phase, so they can be hard to subdue. Even for Brazil? We shall see.

 



No comments yet.

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent Soccer America Daily
USA-Costa Rica: Olympic tuneups end with easy win    
The USA closed out its preparations for the Olympic women's soccer tournament on Friday when it ...
Video Pick: Golazo by Dortmund's Dembele vs. Manchester United    
Why did Borussia Dortmund spend a reported $15 million to get 19-year-old Ousmane Dembele from French ...
Arsenal names roster for U.S. trip    
Arsenal's preliminary list of players who will travel to the United States includes American midfielder Gedion ...
What They're Saying: Axel Sjoberg    
"I don't think I have to sell myself to Dominic Kinnear. He picked the team and ...
USA-Costa Rica: Scorcher expected for final Rio tuneup    
The USA plays its last game before it heads off to the Rio Olympics when it ...
MLS Countdown: Marsch comments roil waters for derby    
Three times a year comes the question: will New York be red or blue? The Hudson ...
Crowd Count: FC Cincinnati sets another USL record    
FC Cincinnati set a USL single-season attendance record when it drew 16,127 fans Wednesday at Nippert ...
MLS Countdown: Quakes duo has red cards rescinded    
The San Jose Earthquakes will have their Panamaniacs available for a game at Real Salt Lake ...
MLS Moves: Orlando bolsters backline with Aja signing    
The first player signed by Orlando City after the hiring of head coach Jason Kreis has ...
U.S. Abroad: Ankle injury sidelines Hyndman    
Emerson Hyndman, who joined Premier League club Bournemouth from Fulham as a free agent in the ...
>> Soccer America Daily Archives