Starting three players from the team that eliminated the defending champion USA from the Under-20 Women's World Cup in August, China showed off the improvement in its senior national team with a 1-1
tie with the USA in the first game of the women's tournament in Brasilia. Just 300 fans watched at the Mane Garrincha Stadium as a brilliant shot from Hang Peng
earned Hao Wei
's new-look Chinese the draw. Dec. 10 in Brasilia USA 1
Goals: Lloyd 23; Hang 67 USA --
Solo; Krieger, Rampone, Sauerbrunn, Klingenberg (O’Hara, 46); Holiday (Johnston, 59), Lloyd; Rapinoe
(Wambach, 46); Press, Leroux, Heath (O’Reilly, 46). China --
Wang Fei; Liu, Wang Shanshan, Wu, Li Dongna, Zhao (Hang, 44), Wang Shuang (Gu, 73),
Tan, Ren, Tang (Goa Qi, 71), Zhang Rui (Li Ying, 87). Att.:
The organized Chinese defense limited the USA to just six shots, the fewest
it has taken in a game since it was held to six shots in a 1-0 win over France in Jill Ellis
' first game as head coach in June. Carli Lloyd
scored her 57th career goal off a cross from Megan Rapinoe
in the 23rd minute but it was the lone goal for the
USA. The best chance it had after that came in the 60th minute when keeper Wang Fei
made an excellent save to deny Sydney
Ellis made only change -- Becky Sauerbrunn
for Whitney Engen
in the back -- from the team
that clinched a berth in the 2015 Women's World Cup with a 3-0 over Mexico in the semifinals of the Concacaf Women's Championship in October.
The USA continues its group play in Brasilia
with a game against host Brazil on Sunday and finish group play against Argentina next Wednesday.
China finished third in the 2014 Asian Women's Cup behind Japan and Australia. Since then
Hao has introduced midfielders Tan Ruyin
and Tang Jiali
and forward Wang Shuang
from the Chinese U-20s into the senior team's starting lineup. Two other U-20s are in Brasilia.
China was grouped with host Canada, New Zealand and the Netherlands in what shaped to be
perhaps the most even group at next year's Women's World Cup.
Game 2 Highlights: Brazil 4 Argentina 0.