[WOMEN'S WORLD CUP FINAL] Only nine minutes away from winning the World Cup in regulation and only three minutes away in overtime, the United States fell to Japan 3-1 in a shootout in the Women's World Cup final when it missed its first three penalty kicks. Homare Sawa's goal off a corner kick in the 117th minute tied the score at 2-2.
Abby Wambach's goal off a cross from Alex Morgan in the 105th minute had given the USA a 2-1 lead. Some horrible defending had allowed Japan to equalize on a goal by Aya Miyama in the 80th minute. Morgan had scored in the 69th minute to give the USA a 1-0 lead.
3-1 Japan: Kumagai (goal)
2-1 Japan: Wambach (goal)
2-0 Japan: Sakaguchi (goal)
Heath (saved by Kaihori)
Nagasato (saved by Solo)
Lloyd (over the crossbar)
1-0 Japan: Miyama (goal)
Boxx (saved by Kaihori with trailing leg).
End of overtime-
122nd minute: Heath shot off scramble following free kick is blocked.
121st minute: Iwashimizu issued red card for taking down Morgan just outside of the area.
120th minute: Wambach shoots over from close range.
119th: Substitution-Iwaguchi on for Maruyama.
117th minute: Sawa equalizes with goal off corner kick. (Tie 2-2)
115th minute: Rampone clears away with Solo beaten after Kinga breaks free on pass from Sawa.
114th minute: Substitution: Heath for Rapinoe.
112th minute: More bad work by the U.S. defense in its area gives Japanese several chances, but they fail to connect.
109th minute: Maruyama shoots wide from outside the area.
104th minute: USA presses down left wing and Morgan finds Wambach to score on a header at the far post. (USA 2-1)
97th minute: Yellow card to Miyama for delay of game.
96th minute: Wambach feeds Morgan with long ball but Morgan shoots wide.
92nd minute: Wambach's header saved by Kaihori at near post.
End of regulation-
89th minute: Japanese getting numbers forward but Sakaguchi shoots wide.
80th minute: Miyama equalizes from close range after Buehler fails to clear the ball. (Tie 1-1)
69th minute: Long ball from Rapinoe finds Morgan, who beats her defender, Kumagai, and scores with her left foot. (USA 1-0).
66th minute: Substitutions-Maruyama comes on for Ohno and Nagasato for Ando.
64th minute: Kaihori makes best save of the game to stop Wambach's header off O'Reilly's cross.
64th minute: Ohno has breakaway but is wrongly called for offside.
Stats: USA 15-5 edge in shots. Teams tied with 1 shot on goal and 3 corner kicks apiece.
52nd minute: Wambach feeds Lloyd, whose shot goes wide.
49th minute: O'Reilly feeds Morgan, who hits near post with left foot for third U.S. shot off the woodwork.
Substitution-Morgan comes on for Cheney, out with an ankle injury.
U.S. striker Lauren Cheney was forced to come off at halftime of the Women's World Cup final with an ankle injury suffered in the first minute of the game. Alex Morgan came on for Cheney to start the second half.
The USA totally dominated the first half of the Women's World Cup final against Japan. The Americans had half a dozen clear chances but the best they could do was Lauren Cheney's shot stopped at the near post in the first 30 seconds of the game. Abby Wambach hit the crossbar, and Megan Rapinoe had a shot off the outside of the post. Japan's short passing game was largely nonexistent until the latter stages of the half.
Stats: USA 12-4 edge in shots. Teams tied with 1 shot on goal apiece.
38th minute: Kawasumi shoots over bar from top of the area.
35th minute: Cheney's free header in the middle goes over the bar. U.S. totals: 12 shots, 1 on goal.
31st minute: Ohno finds Ando in area with through ball but she shoots weakly at Solo.
29th minute: Wambach breaks clear down left wing and cracks ball off crossbar.
18th minute: Cheney puts Rapinoe through, but Rapinoe hits outside of near post.
12th minute: Cheney feeds Rapinoe, who misses from seven yards.
11th minute: Clearance comes to wide-open Lloyd inside the area but she shoots over bar.
8th minute: Rapinoe finds Cheney at near post but her stab just misses wide.
1st minute: Cheney steals ball from Iwashimizu and Kaihori stops her at the near post.
U.S. coach Pia Sundhage dropped Amy Rodriguez from the starting lineup for the Women's World Cup final against Japan. Megan Rapinoe is starting for the first time at the tournament, while Lauren Cheney moves up front.
USA (4-4-2): 1-Hope Solo; 11-Ali Krieger, 3-Christie Rampone, 19-Rachel Buehler, 6-Amy LePeilbet; 9-Heather O'Reilly, 7-Shannon Boxx, 10-Carli Lloyd, 15-Megan Rapinoe; 12-Lauren Cheney; 20-Abby Wambach.
Japan (4-4-2): 21-Ayumi Kaihori; 2-Yukari Kinga, 3-Azusa Iwashimizu, 4-Saki Kumagai, 15-Aya Sameshima; 11-Shinobu Ohno, 6-Mizuho Sakaguchi, 10-Homare Sawa, 8-Aya Miyama; 7-Kozue Ando, 9-Nahomi Kawasumi.