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Americans fall after blowing early lead
by Paul Kennedy, January 21st, 2011 1:50PM

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TAGS:  china, sweden, women's national team

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[USA-SWEDEN WOMEN] It took only 11 minutes for the USA to get its first goal of the year from Carli Lloyd, but it then let 2011 Women's World Cup opponent Sweden rally for a 2-1 win, marking the first time in almost nine years it lost match in which it had led.

The USA took the lead on Lloyd’s 23rd international goal with a header after Lauren Cheney flicked on Megan Rapinoe's driven corner kick, but Sweden equalized five minutes later on a goal by Stina Segerstrom off a corner kick of its own.

Kosovare Asllani then scored in the 60th minute to give Sweden the win before 16,000 fans.

“Our speed of play wasn’t good enough,” said U.S. head coach Pia Sundhage. “One thing as a team that we need to get much better at is moving without the ball. This game today tells us many things that we need to work on, but I am confident that we have enough time and enough games to prepare for the World Cup. This was just the first one.”

The loss was just the third of Sundhage's tenure that began in 2008.

Note: Sydney Leroux, the lone college underclassmen on the team, earned her first cap with the senior team when she came on in the 86th minute for a final push.

Jan. 21 in Chongqing
USA 1 Sweden 2. Goals: Lloyd 11; Segerstrom 16, Asllani 61.
USA -- Barnhart, Mitts, LePeilbet, Rampone, Buehler, O’Reilly (Leroux, 86), Boxx (Averbuch, 46), Lloyd (Lindsey, 46),  Rapinoe (Heath, 71, Cheney, Rodriguez (Morgan, 72)
Sweden -- Lindahl, Nilsson, Rohlin, Segerstrom, Svensson, Asllani (Almgren, 61), Dahlkvist (Fors, 78), Forsberg (Sembrant, 81), Sjogran, Goransson (M.Hammarstrom, 62), Oqvist (Edlund, 73).
Referee: Qin Liang (CHN)



2 comments
  1. . Lev
    commented on: January 23, 2011 at 8:50 p.m.
    I wonder if speed - or anticipation/reading the game - is the real problem? I would think that the US team is very fit.
  1. Sidney Hall
    commented on: January 24, 2011 at 1:07 p.m.
    Don't get me wrong, I'm a big time US men's and women's soccer fan. But, I don't think there's a country out there who doesn't look at our game films/tapes and know exactly how we're going to play. We haven't changes our style in almost ten years. Long kicks over the top, and chase, chase, chase.

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