USWNT rolls past Costa Rica in Rio qualifying opener

The Equalizer Staff February 10, 2016 397
Alex Morgan scored 12 seconds into the match to lift the USWNT to a 5-0 win over Costa Rica in Olympic qualifying. (AP Photo)

Alex Morgan scored 12 seconds into the match to lift the USWNT to a 5-0 win over Costa Rica in Olympic qualifying. (AP Photo)

Alex Morgan scored early, Christen Press scored late and the United States women’s national team opened 2016 CONCACAF Women’s Olympic Qualifying with a 5-0 victory over Costa Rica on Wednesday in Frisco, Texas.

Morgan scored the quickest goal in CONCACAF Women’s Olympic Qualifying history and what is believed to be the fastest goal in U.S. team history when she found net 12 seconds into the match. Morgan said after the game that the kickoff is a designed play which the team has been practicing:

Carli Lloyd, who scored from the penalty spot in the first half, assisted both of Morgan’s goals. Lloyd had the flick-on header for the opening goal and the captain and 2015 FIFA Women’s World Player of the Year chipped a cross into the path of Morgan in the second half for Morgan to head into the net.

[MORE: USWNT worried about Zika virus in Brazil  |  USSF, USWNT in legal battle]

Christen Press would steal the show late after coming on as the United States’ final substitute. Press deftly controlled a cross with the outside of her right foot and her back to goal, spun and scored for a highlight-reel tally.

U.S. coach Jill Ellis switched to a 3-5-2 when Press came on, with the Americans already comfortably leading, 4-0. Crystal Dunn also scored for the Americans.

Mexico defeated Puerto Rico, 6-0 earlier in the night to open the tournament. The U.S. and Mexico meet on Saturday in Frisco.

The top two teams from each group advance to the semifinals, where the winner of each semifinal will advance to the 2016 Rio Olympics. The U.S. women are three-time defending Olympic gold-medalists and reigning World Cup champions.

Ellis called her team’s performance “the perfect start” to qualifying:

  • guest

    Jeff, The second paragraph should begin with Morgan, not Press.

    • Steg Patrol

      EQ again caught with laughable copy editing problems.

      • Steglitz49

        I am innocent.

  • Cc W

    Great start, and overall good game. I like the movement of the ball even if they have to become a bit sharper with their touches and passes. CP’s goal was sweet! Also great to see that Alex and Carli getting some chemistry. Early still, but this likes like a knock off of what Espana does or did to perfection. Not sure this team can get to that level, but I like the thinking and it has potential. The team doesn’t have to peak in February, so for me a nice win.

  • Timber Dave

    It was actually only 11 seconds…. You can see a picture in the comments about the separate story on Morgan’s goal (“Alex Morgan scores 12 seconds into the game”, link above).

    • mockmook

      They probably count seconds the way they count minutes — they always round up to the minute (or second) that the clock is moving into.

      If the video shows 11 seconds, that means 11 plus some fraction has past (maybe 11.7 seconds), so to be “safe/fair”, you say 12 seconds.

  • Kevin

    Dear Jill Ellis,

    MORE PUGH PLEASE!

    Sincerely,
    USWNT fans

    • Guest

      Why? She didn’t do anything other than have a good cross that Lloyd screwed up.
      Krieger and Dunn were dominating the right side of the field. Pugh and Kling play just dropped.

      • AnotherGuest

        Pugh is very composed on the ball and looked good taking players on on the flank even though she didn’t really see any double teams. It appears that she can she can create width and cut inside on either flank and play centrally. She also had good vision to pick out Lloyd for what should have been a goal or a least a shot on target. She could be a world class attacking midfielder in a few years if she keeps developing. Krieger and Dunn were better in this game than they were in the past but wouldn’t call their performance dominant. I didn’t like Klingenberg pushing up so far in the attack today. I don’t think she is as good moving the ball that high up the pitch in traffic. Also, what a touch by Press on her goal.

        • Kevin

          Agreed. This was the best game I’ve seen from the Dunn/Krieger combo, but dominant is a huge stretch.

          However, I do want to see Klingenberg pushing up as far as she can. That’s what she’s best at.

      • Kevin

        Why?!?!

        Because she’s looked good every time she’s touched the ball so far in two games.

      • schoup

        You’re clearly not cultured on the game. Pugh’s composure on the ball, understanding the right pass, making the runs even when the run is missed by teammates,..this all shows she is beyond her years in how she plays and understands the game. Pugh is a refined player and not a helter skelter 100mph player which is what the US has relied on for most of its tenure or being direct(Wambach) There has been talk of US chance in style and I hope it continues, as many of the younger players play a more Euro style of valuing possession such as Brian, Horan, etc..

        • rkmid71

          Helter skelter, 100mph is or was typical in the college game and was a major factor to UNC’s dominance in the 80s, 90s and early 2000s. As you know, many WNT players came from that program and era. The college liberal substitution rules, the crammed schedule, etc all combined to make platooning players a valid winning strategy — especially teams like UNC who had a deeper bench than most teams. Today, UNC is evolving, the talent pool is much deeper and spread across the college landscape, and the quality of play has improved. It would improve even more if they modified the sub rules and spread out the schedule — you would see a lot more parity than even today and the top players would become more readily apparent.

        • My2cents

          I agree with your assessment of Pugh and one thing that really stands out, is her quickness. She is very quick at getting around players while having firm control of the ball.

  • Ethan

    1) Even without Morgan’s confirmation, it was clear that it was a practiced play since Heath and Dunn were the ones kicking off.
    2) Unfortunately, another incorrect refereeing decision on the penalty.
    3) Two great finishes from Morgan, and I thought this match was the best I’ve seen Alex put pressure on a defense for a while.
    4) Great header for Morgan’s first and a great cross for her second from Lloyd. Unfortunately, she somehow completely scuffed Pugh’s great cutback cross.
    5) There were a few miscommunication issues on loose balls from the US in the second half, and play was somewhat sloppy/choppy at times.
    6) I didn’t watch a lot of the first half, but from what I saw in the second half, Cruz is pretty composed on the ball when under pressure.
    7) A pretty good cameo from Pugh. Great play on a chance that Lloyd should have put on target.
    8) Great possession play on Press’ goal, and that first touch from Press was ridiculous. If Heath’s chance from Brian’s goal had gone in, that would have been another great possession play goal.

    • Jersey Shore Rises

      Amazing to see you still take a swipe on My Jersey Girl Lloyd after her amazing assists on the header and pass…. Not surprised, my Jersey Girl once again will dominate the Rio 16….

      • Ethan

        How am I taking a swipe at Lloyd? Players are criticized all the time for such misses, even when they’ve already scored multiple goals and/or made multiple assists. I gave full credit to Lloyd on her assists, but that doesn’t absolve her of criticism for missing a point-blank chance. If she put that away, I wouldn’t have “take(n) a swipe” at her.

        • Jersey Shore Rises

          Ethan be honest, I’ve seen your previous comments about Lloyd and you would even admit they are not in a positive light. If you want me too I can re-post them?

          • Ethan

            I’ve not really made solely negative comments about Lloyd’s play in my review (with numbers) comment on matches. I do remember posting that Lloyd seemed a little off her game for the final matches of the Victory Tour, but that’s as negative as I got. Plus, she must have been somewhat off her game because I didn’t see you boasting in any of the comment sections. In all seriousness though, I’m not a Lloyd “hater”, and I don’t enjoy being accused of primarily talking about Lloyd in a not positive light when that hasn’t been the case.

            In other comments, I’m just as positive as I am critical, if not more positive. If you repost any “negative” comments, make sure to repost all positive ones. Go ahead and repost ones that are positive on the whole and have just minor criticisms as well.

          • Jersey Shore Rises

            Are you serious, how about this comment you made about Carli

            “I’ll be honest; Lloyd arguably shouldn’t have won Player of the Year. She was poor in the first 4 and 2/3 matches for the US at the World Cup, she became far less influential for the Dash after her first few matches after the World Cup (you mention this), and she wasn’t great in the Victory Tour after the first Brazil match. Lloyd’s Golden Ball-winning performances at the Concacaf Championships, her performance against Norway at the Algarve Cup, her performances against China, Germany, and Japan, those matches right after the World Cup, and her Victory Tour performances before the second Brazil match won her the Player of the Year award. I’m not sure I’d rate November to WC Sasic over all year Lloyd though.”

            If that is not someone biased about Lloyd when you imply Sasic deserved FIFA Women Player of the year over Lloyd..

            That is when your bias showed…

          • mockmook

            He thinks that Sasic MIGHT have had a better year.

            I guess you can call that bias (if you label all opinions as bias).

            He also acknowledged all of Carli’s great performances in the that quoted comment.

            Hard to call his opinion “negative” regarding Lloyd when he is only unsure whether she is the BEST player on Earth.

            You’re a touch too defensive regarding the Jersey girl.

          • JSR Watch

            JSR isn’t biased either. LOL.

          • Ethan

            You need to read more of my Sasic comments. I am highly critical of her. Plus, “I’m not sure I’d rate November to WC Sasic over all year Lloyd though” does not imply Sasic deserved FIFA Women Player of the year over Lloyd. It implies that I may still rate Lloyd’s year better and that she may have deserved it over Sasic.

            How am I being biased though? Ask around. Who thought Lloyd had a good first 4 and 2/3 matches at the World Cup? Who thought Lloyd was great in the last few matches of the Victory Tour? Who thought Lloyd was very influential for the Dash after those first few matches following the World Cup? I’m far from the only one who thought Lloyd arguably shouldn’t have won Player of the Year. Most people, including me, were just stating that she’d definitely win it, and I do for the most part think that Lloyd probably deserved it over Sasic and Miyama.

            You do realize that I also state all of Lloyd’s great performances. I will admit that the overall comment isn’t in the most positive light. However, I include every positive performance that was influential in Lloyd getting Player of the Year, and my examples cover a fairly wide range of matches. It’s just that Player of the Year on the men’s side is so heavily influenced by club play, and Lloyd was not great at all before the China match. Lloyd had a great 2015 year, and she definitely deserved to be in the top 10 shortlist, maybe even in a top 5 shortlist. I just don’t think she deserved to win the Player of the Year award, and that’s not bias.

          • We get it

            Please shut up about Lloyd. We get it – you think she’s awesome. Enough already. Your points are emotional not rational at this point.

          • Steglitz49

            Carli is awesome nowadays. She was not in FF in 2011.

      • Steglitz49

        Everyone takes a swipe at Carli except Steg49

    • ARED

      Cruz is a great player -very smart and composed on the ball. Unfortunately in a 0-5 matchup a player like her will always seem alone against a tidal wave.

      • guest

        Cruz is a very good player and in my opinion the best center mid in Concacaf. She is a top player for PSG too even though her injuries have slowed her down somewhat and she is starting to get up there in age.

        • ARED

          Hard for me to say if she’s the best mid in CONCACAF, but with Holiday gone could be I guess…

          Either way, she’s about the exact player I think the USA could use as a holding mid…lol.

    • guest

      I think Morgan had been pressuring defenses fairly well it just hadn’t resulted in a lot of goals and she happened to get 2 this games. I am pretty sure Heath chance from Brian came on a counter after a Brian interception. Press’ goal was some very good possession play albeit against a tired Costa Rica who can’t really challenge the US.

      • Ethan

        I agree that Morgan has applied some decent pressure on opposing defenses lately, but yesterday, she more successfully blocked clearances or forced poor clearances.

        Yeah, maybe I should have classified the Heath chance as a good counter-attacking move. I just remember a very nice pass into Brian on the wing, and then she whipped in a great cross for Heath.

  • Tay

    Thought the standout player was Morgan Brian who was everywhere while deftly breaking up plays and making a simple pass that would quickly transition from defense to offense. Glad Lloyd and Morgan developing better chemistry. Pugh is showing lots of promise. And wow that Press move and importantly a goal.
    I wanted to wait and see a few games before I made this comment. And since Alex has scored lately I feel more settled in stating that if she can continues to be a proficient goal scorer so be it that she is a lone central striker in this formation. But I think it’s clear that her natural position is neither a lone or classic central striker. Her strengths are not utilized in the middle on top alone. She is more like a Ronaldo and come in from the wings and to have someone to play off of. She’s great and perfect forward to start of you have a 2 forward formation. If you notice how she receives the ball on top when it isn’t perfect through or direct ball she reverts mostly to head flicks randomly to control the ball vs like someone with skills more adept to a central lone striker and hold up the ball or position themselves to receive the ball to their feet or control. It’s not her natural instinct (yet). This dates to her time in the spot on the Thorns. You know who is natural lone central striker — Press. And it’s a shame not to utilize her more on that spot. I get she hasn’t “proven” herself but like JJ and lots of other players you sorta can’t if you don’t give them time. Yes Press had a lot of time as a MF *cough* not her natural position. As much as Alex is clutch, I won’t mind seeing that hunger like she did back under Pia to prove she deserves her starter spot. Not a fan of token spots. Yes she’s elite but there was a long stretch she wasn’t scoring and that’s #1 job as a forward. And it wasn’t just the number of goals but her shot placement and efficiency was not good. She may never regain 2012 form but needs to better than the last couple of years.

    • ARED

      3 forwards with Press in between Morgan and ???. Take your pick from (Leroux, ARod), Heath, (Rapinoe), (Holiday), Lloyd, Dunn, etc, etc, and I think you’ll have a dominant attack. Esp if you have a good midfield as well (which the USA *should* have).

      • schoup

        The US can not play a real 4-3-3. They would get murdered in the MF vs any decent team. To play a 4-3-3 you have to have 3 absolute dominant MF’s that can hold possession. USNT doesn’t have that.

        • Ethan

          Brian, Killion, and DiBernardo held their own in the U-20 2012 WC.

        • mockmook

          The 4-2-3-1 is essentially a 4-3-3 with the center Forward pushed up.

        • ARED

          Murdered? Worse than France/Australia/Japan have (on occasion) dominated the USA midfield? Or when South Korea did last year? My comment makes it clear that there are fewer great/proven options right now than there were 12 months ago, but I still see no truth to the idea that the USWNT cannot play a “risky” system (like a 4-3-3). Sure you are more open at times, but they are often open anyway -and, as we know, the US has the luxury of a great back line *and* Solo behind.

          They would have to set the players up well to succeed, but I think a midfield 3 from: (Holiday), Heath, Brian, Rapinoe, Lloyd, Averbuch (or a real holding mid) could absolutely succeed against any team, and dominate against most. They would have options and outlets all over the field (Press, Morgan, Klingenberg, Sauerbrunn, Johnston, Solo, etc).

          Last point, which seems to always be forgotten, is that you are not even necessarily more open or at risk in a 4-3-3; it easily can become a 4-5-1 or a 4-2-3-1 or anything you want really, so if you find a team over-running your midfield you just change it.

          • Steglitz49

            You’ve lost me but never mind.

          • ARED

            Short version: US fans seem a bit scared to “risk” anything beyond a 4-4-2, and lumping the ball forward to avoid “risky” lateral or *gasp* backwards passes.

            Their midfield has been generally poor compared to their talent level for years -why so set on holding on to that?

          • schoup

            You do now holiday is gone and that her and Lloyd were absolutely stinking the midfield up for the entire 1st half of last year till the formation change. They were purely incapable of controlling the MF, providing linkage play between def to forwards and both were turnover machines, Lloyd still is and always will be a turnover machine. The reason they moved her up is she can’t play CM, doesn’t have the legs and/or desire. Not tom mention she turns the ball over making foolish plays.

            People have become delusional of the back line. They gave up few goals but they also got luck by some absolute piss poor finishing by teams like Sweden, Germany, etc..

            Few teams actually play a 4-3-3 at top level soccer b/c it takes unique players to do it. Barca can b/c they have Iniesta, Busquets to control the MF, and Rakitic does the dirty work often. Another thing about 4-3-3 is that the width is provided by your outside backs, again you need backs that can do that ..Alves and Alba types.. Kling and Krieger are not those types of back…Kling is better at getting forward and Krieger is mediocre offensively.

          • mockmook

            The USA absolutely has the players to do a 4-3-3

            But, you are mistaken regarding attacking width. That is primarily the job of the wingers (with some overlapping help of the outside backs).

            I’d say that Kling and Kriegs do an adequate job in that regard.

            And, don’t forget that the OBs also have to play defense. Kling and Kriegs do provide that balance of offense and defense.

            This is just one way the USA could play an attack oriented 4-3-3:

            http://drawformation.com/post/56a588847a47b/sm-56a588847a47b.png

          • Guest

            Well I know women’s football isn’t men’s football but since women’s game seems to be becoming more like the men’s game, I am not surprised that Ellis is using the OB for the team’s primary source of width. Even Barcelona who has used a 4-3-3 pretty exclusively for the last decade uses the OBs for width and has their wingers in Messi and Neymar coming centrally. I would say that OBs are the primary source of width in the men’s game and that they are becoming that in the women’s game amongst all of the top teams. Think about Maier, Boulleau, Bronze, and Klingenberg just to name a few on the top teams. The Japanese sending their OBs forward directly led to the counter on Holiday’s goal in the WC final.

            I also wouldn’t play Press and Morgan as wingers or Lloyd as a CF. Dunn would probably be a good 4-3-3 winger if she was allowed to stay hight and in the future I think Pugh will also be a great wide forward or CAM in a few years. I honestly think the starting XI from the current formation would be fine if you removed Lloyd and inserted a DM(Sonnett) that allowed Brian and Horan to get further forward at the same time.

          • schoup

            You don’t know how an actual 4-3-3 works if you think the width isn’t provided by the outside backs. Btw, you formation is laughable.. Sonnett trying to play the holding MF. In a 4-3-3 th holding MF is even more important than normal.

          • mockmook

            So, who is the non-laughable DM (and why is she a better choice than Sonnett)?

            And, please, do tell me how a 4-3-3 works.

          • ARED

            1) Yes, the USA was much better suited for any formation before Holiday retired -I bring her up, b/c this discussion about “can’t play 4-3-3” has existed since well before the WC.

            My biggest point: Many/most agree the midfield is/was bad, so why are people so stuck to the idea it has to be the same formation and/or players? I agree Lloyd and Holday was a mess, so why not play 3 matches with just one and 3 with the other, and see how the team looks? But both always played, making each other and their whole team drastically worse. Finally Lloyd at forward (free CAM) allowed for a decent midfield behind her.

            2) The back line is better than any other I see in WoSo, and Solo is by far at GK. Yes they can be beat, but I generally find turnovers and poor play/defense from the front six to be much more at fault than the back line.

            3) I think the USWNT has unique players and talent in the WoSo world. They are like Barcelona, if they want to be. That’s why I say they could find a good holding mid, play Heath and Rapinoe/Brian (Holiday would have been ideal), and just see how it goes. They’d be deadly on the ball, and if you don’t have Lloyd in the midfield giving it away, you’d be well able to defend when countered.

            The US plays with their outside backs wide as it is; Klingenberg IS Jordi Alba in WoSo. Maybe better. Kreiger is good enough going forward, while O’Hara offers more spark. Again, they, or the two outside forwards, easily make a 3 man midfield a 5 man midfield. Who’s outnumbered now? Watch the USA-Australia match to see Van Egmond, Gorry, and Kellond-Knight completely ran the game against the USA midfield, thanks to Foord and Catley outside, and De Vanna and Kerr as well.

            So Australia is that much more talented than the USA? They *could* play it if they wanted. But Ellis agrees with you, too risky, better to try to eek out 1-0’s against Mexico -FIFA rank 26. ; )

          • schoup

            You’re living a fantasy. The MF isa disaster ans had been for a yr. it’s still not very good and you want to play a formation which by necessity requires an absolute dominant MF. It’s foolish thought.

            The USWNT has no Barca like players. There is no INiesta, Busquets, Messi, Alba, Alves, etc..types.

          • ARED

            I’m not talking about what I want. I’m talking about what is possible for the USWNT. We agree the midfield needs work it seems, so what would you suggest -since you clearly are strongly against a 3 player midfield?

            It wasn’t a foolish thought for Aus, was it? Are they somehow so much more talented than the USA?? I fail to see your argument beyond “it can’t work”. Barca needs transcendent players b/c the level in the men’s game is so high. USWNT is competing against a much lower level, so even if they don’t have the legend Iniesta or Xavi, they could certainly make it work.

          • ARED

            And I maintain that Heath, Rapinoe, Morgan, Press, Kling, Sauerbrunn, Johnston, are all at a “Barca-like” level compared to the WoSo standard. Brian, Averbuch, and Horan all play the right way to fit right in.

            It’s a different thought, yes. As I said, that’s why I bring it up. But different doesn’t equal foolish.

          • schoup

            A 4-3-3 would be a disaster. They can’t control the MF against even mediocre teams and it’s even harder in a 4-3-3. They need to 86 the 4-5-1 which was implemented to cater to Lloyd who doesn’t have the legs, ability, desire, skills to play CM any more. She is a turnover machine. They should play a 4-4-2, bench Lloyd she is slow, cumbersome, terrible touch, etc..she is the michael bradley of the WNT..a player hyped as being great but if you actually look and know the game they are overrated players who are actually poor at their actual positions of CM….bad touches, too may turnovers, stupid passes that lead to counters, etc…

            The should have a 4-4-2…Press and Morgan should be top, MF Heath(left b.c Pinoe is 1st choice but hurt. CM’s Brian and Horan. Right MF Dunn 1st choice for now but I would take a long look at Pugh, her understanding of the game, calmness on the ball, etc..is beyond her years.

            Btw, as I have said many times any decently organized team causes huge problems and Lloyd is taken out of the game. Lloyd did nothing against Mexico but turn the ball over and whine to the ref a ton.

          • ARED

            Well now I think maybe we’re getting somewhere. ; p

            I agree on the current system and Lloyd -I’ve advocated the consideration of moving her out of the core of the team for awhile b/c I think her style dictates she is on the ball a lot and doesn’t move it quickly or smoothly to connect with the team. Which is not ideal for a team as talented/deep as the USA in my opinion.

            I think your suggested 4-4-2 is probably the best choice in that formation. I’d be looking at Pugh/O’Hara/Dunn on the right side. And again you miss Holiday a ton having to insert Horan, but at this point she is probably the best option (though others could have been tried as well).

            However the details work out, I think it’s reasonable to have that as your first option or Plan A. But I think it’s far more crazy to think that they shouldn’t have a Plan B than to think that a 3-player midfield can work. And so that’s where I just don’t understand the reluctance (not just from you) about even trying a 4-3-3, a 5-3-2 (or 3-5-2) or other “different” formations.

      • schoup

        You do realize the midfield was a disaster most of last year. It’s hardly settled now and you think they should play the most difficult formation to play in regards to MF?

        • ARED

          That’s why I said “should” have a good midfield. They have been poor in recent years compared to their talent level, but nonetheless, they have the players if they want to do it and set the team up well.

          I don’t say the should play 3 mids, just that they could. And that they would gain a lot by having an aggressive, high-pressure team with more than just Morgan on the field out of their talented crew of forwards -of course, now significantly weakened without Leroux, ARod, and Rapinoe (who could be a forward in a 3 front).

  • Tikitaka

    That was a fun one to watch and I can’t wait for the team to get better and better! It’s always hard to say goodbye (or seeya later) to older favorite players, but these young ones are so inspiring for the future of the USWNT.

    And sidenote, I feel like Alex has been playing so much better since she officially left the Thorns. Don’t want to assume, but I feel like she wasn’t super happy there for a long while.

    • Guesting

      Probably had a lot to do with the way Riley was using her.

      • Tikitaka

        I’m just glad to see her scoring more for the NT. Hope she does work with Orlando too!

    • ARED

      Good point, but I think she wasn’t super healthy there more than anything.

      Also, a nice wide grass field is her always going to be her friend.

    • HOFCToDi

      Two healthy knees, two healthy ankles, one happy Alex Morgan.

  • newsouth

    Marta type goal from Press
    Lloyd is clearly the new Wambach 🙁
    Horrible, just horrible, just beyond horrible HOMETOWN penalty call
    Tomato Can Qualifications for FC USWNT
    Costa Rica got a lot of cuties on their squad.

    • Guest

      Press had an excellent touch and finish but I can’t say the goal reminds me of Marta at all.

      • ARED

        Marta makes flicks against the grain like that a lot, although it looks a bit different when she does it.

        Press did it to set up her left foot, which perhaps made it slightly less flashy -but actually more impressive….

        • Steglitz49

          You are making Christen Annemarie sound like Helmut Rahn …

          • ARED

            I’m making her sound German? ; p I said it was an impressive finish. I would have trouble taking that goal with my left foot, I know that!

    • Jersey Shore Rises

      Carli just showed as she has over the last year she can pass the ball. The unreal header to Morgan and the pass for the 4th goal to Morgan proves it…. Time for the nay sayers to finally say YAY…

  • Jersey Shore Rises

    This is for all the Carli Haters , Yes she had 1 goal and 2 assists including one that not any other USWNT player on the team could do…

    Congrats USWNT and especially my girl Carli Lloyd… I bet NYRick is puking atm….

    • guest

      Sure Carli was productive today but she didn’t really stand out to me. I only counted one assist btw and the notion that no one else on the team could make that cross is beyond ridiculous. What did stand out to me was the ridiculous 40 yard shot attempt when the counter was on and there were players to pass to in space. Pretty indefensible selfishness if you ask me.

      • Jersey Shore Rises

        Did you watch that game? If so your comment “I only counted one assist btw” is beyond comprehension…. Next..

      • Ethan

        Well, in Lloyd’s defense, the Costa Rican keeper was way off her line. Lloyd did get two assists; her first was the header for Morgan’s first. I do agree with you though that there are other people on the team capable of pulling off either assist. Jersey Shore Rises also doesn’t bring up Lloyd’s major miss on Pugh’s cross. That can happen to anyone though.

        • guest

          Maybe you disagree but I don’t see the goal keeper being off her line as an acceptable reason to waste a counter on a 40yd attempt on goal.

          • ARED

            It’s a terrible play -unless it goes in! lol.

            Beckham and Lloyd get one free pass at trying each season, after that, they get the evil eye just like anyone else….lol.

          • HOFCToDi

            The score was 3 – 0 at the time. No harm, no foul.

          • ARED

            Like I said….

            If I’m a teammate who’s sprinted 40 yards to give an option (after playing defense), I won’t mind it…buuut, if it happens over and over, or we are losing, I will mind a lot more.

          • HOFCToDi

            Actually the score was 4 – 0 and the shot took place at the 66th minute.
            You still want to complain?

          • ARED

            Like I said… … …

            It’s not a big deal if certain players do it at certain times, like this one. (But sometimes, it is a big deal).

            Who’s complaining again…?

          • Kevin

            The keeper was waaaaaaaaay off her line. Taking a shot there was fine.

          • Ehh. It would be a “waste” if it was against a quality opponent and the U.S. really needed a goal. The U.S. was already ahead, had a guaranteed win, why not take a risky shot with the GK off her line? Yeah, Lloyd’s aim was bad I don’t mind her trying that against Costa Rica. If she makes that decision versus a team during the She Believes Cup, that’s a different story.

      • Jersey Shore Rises

        Guess you missed the 2015 WV final…

        • Steglitz49

          Most people did.

          • Guesting

            Yeah I missed the WV Final! Where was it played?

          • Kevin

            In West Virginia, duh!

          • Steglitz49

            Women’s Volleyball?

      • The Mirror of the Guest

        What you miss, being a dope and pathological hater, is the fact that Lloyd makes the goals and assists and no one else does.

        Your imaginary other players are not doing anything. Saying anyone can do what Lloyd does means little, if these other players are not doing it. She is always improving, pushing herself, when these others you speak of are not.

        Lloyd has a performance history going back to high school. She is the epitome of a champion. Anyone looking at her record can see that. She will be remembered, when all is said and done, with the likes of Mia Hamm and will eclipse Wambach (some feels she has already).

        Check you hate.

    • guest

      I forgot the first Morgan goal was flicked on. Still assist is not one that no other player can make. Morgan in particular is also good at flicking the ball on with her head.

      • Jersey Shore Rises

        Yeah, name me another USWNT member that could make a header assist like that?

        Yep, You cant… Moron..

        • guest

          Morgan. I named her in the comment

          • Jersey Shore Rises

            You are a Moron that would even imply my Jersey Girl Carli had a bad game as you did….. All she did was pick up two amazing assists with the goal…

            Next, Moron…

          • guest

            Horan can also flick the ball on with her head. The moron is the person claiming that Lloyd has abilities that other players simply can’t match.

          • Jersey Shore Rises

            No the real Moron are people like you in these forums that still attack Lloyd after the team wins 5-0 and she has 2 amazing assists with a goal… That is the real Moron…

            IMHO when a team wins 5-0, the entire team should be given Kudos…

          • Kevin

            Ahh, another person who only looks at the stat sheet and doesn’t realize that when playing a tomato can a 5-0 win can actually have been a good or bad performance overall.

          • guest

            My words were that she was productive but that she didn’t stand out to me, not that she had a bad day. The position I am attacking is yours when you claim that Lloyd is making plays that other players don’t have the ability to make. Horan for example flicked on a ball to Morgan for a shot directed on goal in this very game.

          • Jersey Shore Rises

            So why even attack Carli with your comments after a 5-0 win?

          • guest

            I didn’t. That’s just your interpretation of what I typed.

          • Guesting

            Plus Horan flicked another one that lead to Dunn’s goal as well. She was impressive with the long ball she delivered into Lloyd that she flicked on for Morgan’s first goal. Looks like she may have locked down Holiday’s spot.

          • We’ve seen Morgan flick header passes like that. And probably Press, Pinoe, Brian, Johnston is good at headers. Maybe Horan. Maybe Kling.

        • ARED

          Horan did it…in this game….lol.

          (but I have long praised Lloyd as being great in the air -been better than Wambach for awhile now).

          • HOFCToDi

            Please don’t remind me about a certain bombastic individual.

            How about “Forget Me” instead?

          • ARED

            Who, AW? I’m far from her biggest fan..,.especially around these parts….lol. In fact, I only mentioned her to praise your beloved Lloyd! Lloyd has been better on set pieces for probably at least 2 years, so it made the “need” for AW even less than it was.

          • HOFCToDi

            Acknowledge the USWNT players that delivered victory in the semifinals against Germany and final against Japan of the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup

            drawformation.com/post/56bc60cb89182/56bc60cb89182.png

            I don’t see Christen Press in the starting XI, let alone coming off the bench in the two aforementioned matches.

          • ARED

            Again with Christen Press with you, eh?

            Sorry…ahem….but who was talking about her? I made a compliment of Lloyd, and emphasized it by taking a small shot against Wambach -and your response is to tell me about two matches from last summer and Christen Press???

            I know very well the lineup which won the WC, since the second Wambach was out of it and the Lloyd/Holiday “partnership” was finally ended the USA became a somewhat fluid and competent team again.

          • HOFCToDi

            The metamorphosis actually commenced in the quarterfinals against China of the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup.

            resources.fifa.com/mm/document/tournament/competition/02/65/34/85/eng_45_0626_chn-usa_tacticalstartlist_neutral.pdf

            The genesis of “Forget Me”.

          • ARED

            Yes, like I said….

            The China match Ellis was forced to 1) Bench AW -because it was clear to all that the “emperor had no clothes”, and, 2) Implode her terrible midfield, since Holiday and Rapinoe were suspended. The beginning of the change.

            Heath and Brian came in brilliantly, although with Holiday/Rapinoe out the US was a bit shorthanded and had never played that lineup before. Lloyd made her best pass of the WC early but ARod mishit it. USA ground out a 1-0, with another great header by Lloyd. Shortly after Press had a great left-footed shot from 25 yards that came off the inside of the post back to Lloyd -but she couldn’t handle the bounce and was called offside anyway.

            Funny how that works -you don’t have to treat one player as a leper for no reason, just to try to (weakly) prop up your preferred player(s).

          • HOFCToDi

            Shannon Boxx retired at the age of 38. Abby Wambach retired at the age of 35. Lori Chalupny retired at the age of 32.

            “Forget Me” times 3.

            A 40 year old, who incidentally can’t get out of bed without injuring herself these days, still has not got the message. The fear of prop up preferred player(s).

          • HOFCToDi

            As for your other comment, there are starters in this world (Alex Morgan, Carli Lloyd) and there are reserves (Christen Press). Once posters accept this reality, there will be peace on message boards “from sea to shining sea”.

          • ARED

            Yes, Morgan and Press looked terrible against Costa Rica….they better never play together again!

            They terrorize defenders. Lloyd can too. Calm down, eat a snickers, and maybe we can find peace after all…. ; p

          • HOFCToDi

            4 – 0 game over. Ever hear of the phrase “garbage time”?

          • ARED

            One might argue It’s garbage time in a CONCACAF Women’s tournament from kickoff until the Semis…. ; )

            In every moment before the WC in which Wambach did not play (rare as they were), ALL of the other forwards looked great, in any combination. Fast, skilled, dangerous, fluid. They have (had) 4 great options, not counting Lloyd.

            Put Leroux or ARod on Spain or South Korea, and they probably would jump into the top-10 and start regularly beating good teams.

          • Kevin

            Garbage time against Costa Rica starts with the opening kickoff.

          • NYRick

            Here’s an HOFC snickers ad for you.

            He starts out as Madeline Albright screaming “there’s a special place in hell for any woman who doesn’t think Carli Lloyd in the best player in the world.”

            (Have a Snickers Madeline). Better?

            She has now transformed into a smiling Christen Press.

            “Better.”

          • NYRick

            Seriously, tell me how many strikers in WoSo (including Alex or Carli) could have pulled off the ridiculous first touch, turn and goal that Press did in this match. That is absurd skill and practice to even think of attempting it. Yet you continually position her as a “reserve.” LOL. At least say the US team has a host of great players (certainly Lloyd and Morgan included) and it is difficult for any number of reasons to start on this team. Some of it very much political and sponsor driven.

            But you’re too small to ever say that.

          • schoup

            Press is the best player on the team in tight space. She can make/create space for a shot better than anyone and can do with either foot. Press is a pure goal scorer and has been misused trying her wide right, which essentially left her out of the line up. Press should be stating in 2 front, but they are catering to LLoyd who couldn’t actually play CM anymore, as she was stinking the joint up which was part of the need for the formation change.

          • #1Fan

            beware. I agree with you. BUT as long as LLoyd scores and the US win, what is the incentive for change ?

          • NYRick

            Honestly, I want to see Press as one of the two forward starters simply because I feel she is our best pure striker but…the US can beat 90% of their competition fairly easily (sans the you know who teams) with about our 9th or 10th best forwards in America. So you ask the incentive for change? Well here’s one. If I’m a big sponsor I want Press on the pitch and her mug all over the place. Money should talk, but on the US team there is a strange politics always at work. And Morgan won the “first-in” battle a long time ago over Press (ridiculously attractive high scoring forward).

          • rkmid71

            The incentive is to anticipate and expect that top teams will take away Lloyd and the US will need to be able to adapt. Don’t wait until it happens to try different combinations. Get them used to it now. Rotation makes a lot of sense. Keep them all healthier and fresher and more interchangeable.

          • NYRick

            Obviously, and I mean very obviously at this point, the only way Press starts at forward is an injury to either Alex and Carli or both. No other way in the calendar year of 2016. She can come on in the 76th minute of every game from here to Rio and score 2+ goals in every appearance and still would never start or get more than 20 minutes without an injury to the above two. There is no mystery here. What I can’t figure is why Ellis doesn’t at least rotate the 3 as starters whereby (heaven forbid) Carli comes on in the 70th minute in some matches or Alex doesn’t start and subs in late for either of the two forwards. Reason: Alex has to play for the sponsors. No one can convince me otherwise. And Carli has to play because Ellis has to wash her car for life for the Japan WC final.

            After the Rio OG, Alex most likely seems headed to starting a family and will miss 2017. That would be Press’s chance but by that time she will probably be bored or I think Pugh will be in line to team with Carli instead. Carli and Hope are never leaving till 38 at the minimum or basically post VT from WC19. That is in stone.

          • schoup

            2017 will be a nothing year. The USWNT plays 10 or less games the 1st year of a cycle, it’s a rest year. Pugh is going to be in college and isn’t going to see enough time with NT to be a starter. 2018 maybe for Pugh. Wcup quals are fall of 2018 and she will be in the fall of her junior year. I think that may be an interesting decision for her of what do come 2018 and into 2019 Wcup. It kind of makes sense for her not to turn pro now, but come 2019 Wcup she might leave college early.

            Pugh situation is all around going to be interesting how it;s managed. Say she makes the final Olympic roster, it requires her to miss all UCLA pre season training and beginning of the season likely. If they win the Olympics will she take call ups for the VT? Then since she is still age eligible for U20 wcup (captain of the team) does she go to that and Rio if selected?

          • ARED

            Agreed -also Heath is great in tight spaces, but often avoids them or turns away where Press often tries to exploit them. But both are players who are “open” even in a crowd.

            ARod is pretty good in tight spaces once she has control, after Press she might the best of the forwards for me (in a crowd, not overall).

          • Guest

            Press is great at getting her shot off on target with little to no space to work with but I don’t think she is as good at dribbling out of them as some of the midfielders are.

          • ARED

            Agreed, she’s best at finding quick/sneaky shots, with smart and efficient use of touches.

            Which midfielders do you think for dribbling in (and out of) tight spaces? I come to Heath again I guess. Rapinoe and Dunn are good and aggressive, but not exactly flawless. Holiday was efficient and smart, but she’s gone now. Lloyd can find her way through a crowd, more with power than control. Your thoughts?

          • Ethan

            I don’t know if Morgan can pull off that particular move, but I do think she is capable of pulling off moves of at least somewhat similar quality. Her touch for her disallowed goal against China was perfect, and her finish was even better. She also brilliantly beat a German defender with a nifty turn to set up Boxx in the 2013 Algarve Cup final. I can’t think of any moves off the top of my head with regards to Lloyd, but I wouldn’t be surprised if other posters could. Le Sommer, Cristiane, and Marta (if you consider her a striker) all have the ability, but I’ve never seen them pull off that particular move. Regardless though, it was a fantastic, world-class bit of play from Press.

          • It was a fantastic play, that’s for sure. But the U.S. has many players with great ball handling skills. We’ve seen Morgan pluck the ball out of the air and score on a single touch. We’ve also seen her with her back to goal, turn and score. So, I’m guessing Morgan could combine those two skills and could score a goal like that. I also think Arod could. She made some great scores with her back to the goal for KC. In fact, so did Holiday. Heath has fantastic ball control. I’m sure she could pluck it from the air like that. Not sure she could finish the shot, though, but it’s possible. It was a truly stellar goal from Press.

          • HOFCToDi

            Since the USWNT is on to the Olympics, Alex Morgan has proven performance under pressure.

            youtube.com/watch?v=8TTVF3_3JBU

          • HOFCToDi

            The truth hurts, live with it.

            Starters – Carli Lloyd, Alex Morgan
            Reserves – Christen Press

          • HOFCToDi

            Where was that moment of individual brilliance against Sweden in the group stage of the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup?

            resources.fifa.com/mm/document/tournament/competition/02/64/72/20/eng_19_0612_usa-swe_tacticalstartlist.pdf

            resources.fifa.com/mm/document/tournament/competition/02/64/73/21/eng_19_0612_usa-swe_fulltime.pdf

          • mockmook

            It was a beautiful, magnificent goal.

            But, whether she should be a starter also depends on what she does the other 99% of the time.

            Aren’t you one of the people (including myself) who have argued at times that Lloyd shouldn’t start despite her goal scoring prowess?

          • HOFCToDi
          • HOFCToDi

            Christen Press is not in the photo.

            ussoccer.com/~/media/Images/WNT/Gallery%20Images/2016/02/160210%20WNT%20vs%20CRC/160211%20WNT%20vs%20CRC%20Gallary02

          • HOFCToDi

            Christen Press is not the team captain.

            cdn-us-ec.yottaa.net/5682eca20b534438800014b5/www.ussoccer.com/v~11.10/~/media/images/wnt/gallery-images/2016/02/160210-wnt-vs-crc/160211-wnt-vs-crc-gallary05.jpg?h=538&w=800&yocs=4_&yoloc=us

          • HOFCToDi

            Where is the goal scored by Christen Press for the USWNT against Germany?

            youtube.com/watch?v=B7f5WIuSiY4

            youtube.com/watch?v=fDwJkjIag9M

          • HOFCToDi

            Where is the goal scored by Christen Press against England?

            youtube.com/watch?v=njzY5-MdwmU

          • HOFCToDi

            Where is the goal scored by Christen Press in a FIFA Women’s World Cup final?

            youtube.com/watch?v=ckqqFEnEf-c

          • HOFCToDi

            Where is the goal scored by Christen Press in a FIFA Women’s World Cup final?

            youtube.com/watch?v=mBosyOJ3PIY

          • Breakers fan

            What I like a lot about Press is her mental game. Her quick-thinking. Consider how quickly she had to develop (I use that word kind of sarcastically because there was basically no time to develop the idea; she thought of it pretty much instantaneously with Heath’s pass coming to her) the notion of doing what she was going to do, and did, brilliantly. That was not the typical thing to do with the ball in that situation. It’s this cerebral aspect that sets her apart from many. Her anticipation and quick action, in addition, crucially, of course, to her great physical and technical abilities. She’s not flawless, no one is, but she’s a damn good forward.

          • mockmook

            Look who the cat dragged in…

            “She’s not flawless”

            Blasphemy!!! You are a sick, sick “fan”. Probably believe that Carli doesn’t walk on water, too!!!

          • Breakers fan

            Haha, reporting for my flogging, sir!

          • Guesting

            Right! As long as we have someone like you, there will never be peace on this particular “message board”.

    • guest

      Why do you feel the need to like your own comments?

      • Jersey Shore Rises

        Why do you feel you need to attack Carli Lloyd no matter the facts whereby she had two amazing assists in a game?

        Finally why use a Guest for commenting and not put your handle out there?

        • guest

          Why is saying Carli Lloyd’s assists were not all that special an attack on Lloyd? They were good plays just not great plays that others can’t replicate.

          • Jersey Shore Rises

            When you make a comment like “Pretty indefensible selfishness if you ask me.” after having 2 assists in a game just makes your argument Moot.

        • Pot is Black

          Why use an alias and not your real name? Hypocrite.

    • schoup

      LOL.. Lloyd actually had a poor game. At least a dozen horrible turnovers giving the ball away on bad touches with nobody pressuring, misses an absolute sitter set up by Pugh. DShe missed another sitter in the 1st half but the Pugh one was absolutely herendous. The goal was on a PK, big deal and it shouldn’t have even been a PK.

      • Guest

        In the eyes of Jersey Shore Rises she can do no wrong. I guess that makes you a Moron by his standards. Shame on you! Be prepared to come under his attack for speaking ill of her.

  • Jersey Shore Rises

    I just love reading the comments from people that still hate my Jersey Girl, FIFA Women Player of the Year, Carli Lloyd. They still cannot admit she can pass the ball pretty well and give her kudos….. Love ya Carli, keep working it till the USWNT once again takes the Gold in RIO…..

  • Jersey Shore Rises

    Only in these forums can people complain and rant when the USWNT wins 5-0 and My Jersey Girl Carli Llloyd has two amazing assists along with a goal…. Yes, how pathetic is that…. 😀

    We are a team and do not need to attack players personally …

    • JSR Watch

      How many comments are you going to write about the number of assists “your” Lloyd made? You have six already. That’s trolling.

    • schoup

      B/c unlike you people here that no the game realize it was actually not a good performance, CR just really sucks. Try watching the game without blinders on , the replay is on NBC live extra for free. Count the number of bad touches, silly passes, passes to nobody, passing a player into trouble, just asinine turnovers. 3 times a player running in open space just touched the ball 10 yds in front of them and right to CR and they were on the break. The simple fact is the tem played like a team that hadn’t played in months instead of a team that had a month camp, a game, and another 2 weeks of training. 3 or 4 players ofthe 13 field players used had a good game overall.

      • Jersey Shore Rises

        The one wearing blinders are people like you that constantly only point out the negative plays that Carli has and never give credit for positive ones.

        • schoup

          The bad plays she makes are 20 to 1 to the good ones. She is the Michael Bradley of the WNT. A player that is mediocre and turnover machine that occasionally makes a good playbut makes much many more horrible plays, head scratching WTF plays.

    • chill

      JSR, did you play soccer at any competitive level?

  • HOFCToDi

    2016 CONCACAF Women’s Olympic Qualifying Championship
    USA 5 Costa Rica 0
    Date 2-10-2016

    concacaf.com/category/olympics-qualifying-women/game-detail/256290

    Players with the most passes attempted
    Lloyd – 49/12 (80.3%)
    Brian – 42/11 (79.2%)
    Horan – 38/10 (79.2%)
    Heath – 38/8 (82.6%)
    Klingenberg – 43/2 (95.6%)
    Johnston – 24/3 (88.9%)
    Sauerbrunn – 21/6 (77.8%)
    Krieger – 16/1 (94.1%)

    • Jersey Shore Rises

      Once again facts back up Lloyd but some people in these forums still want to ignore it… 😀

      • HOFCToDi

        For the posters who call Carli Lloyd a “forward”, Carli Lloyd completes a lot passes like a central attacking midfielder.

        • ARED

          Against Costa Rica, yes…..

        • Guest

          She isn’t playing as a forward and I’m tired of people stating that the team is playing a 4-4-2. For the last time, it’s a 4-2-3-1 or 4-4-1 because Lloyd is actually playing as a roaming AM

          • HOFCToDi

            You are preaching to the choir.

          • ARED

            I don’t see why it’s so crucial to nail it down to a science, especially when against such poor opposition any US player can slide around anywhere they want. The difference between “roaming AM” and “withdrawn forward” isn’t really the greatest thing.

            I think we can all agree Lloyd is in a roaming (or “free”) role, and is not a CM, which is what some of us often try to point out. Kaka is not a CM, or a “striker”. Niether is Lloyd.

      • HOFCToDi

        The comments are even worse in the other article:

        “Watch: Alex Morgan scores 12 seconds into game”

        • Jersey Shore Rises

          Just for giggles I read some of the comments in those threads and still laughing about people complaining that Carli’s PK was not spot on….. They need to get a life. 😀

          • HOFCToDi

            The “Press Gang Troll Brigade” will nitpick every little detail of Carli Lloyd’s game to no end.

      • Kevin

        What do they back up? That she touched the ball more than anyone?

        • NYRick

          Hey Kevin, quick question that you would most likely be able to decipher with your pristine stat analysis: HOFC posted some possession stats above, and surely there has to be some type of difference between the passes say a JJ is making and the passes a Horan or Heath need to make during the course of a match. I mean it didn’t look like the back 4 was under any pressure at any time and simply walked the ball up or made a safe pass to each other or to a wide open midfielder.

          You probably know more than anyone on here that stats often don’t lie, but sometimes can tell you anything you want them to be.

          • Kevin

            On the contrary, I’m at the other end of the spectrum. I probably think stats lie more than anyone. Like you said, a lot of times they can be used to tell any story you want.

            One person could use those stats to say Lloyd completed more passes than anyone. Another person could use the same stats and say she had more turnovers than anyone.

            As much as we often disagree, Steglitz49 already pointed out some of the questions that immediately come to mind when viewing those stats.

            • “Which passes were long and which were short?”
            • “Which passes were under pressure and which were at leisure?”

            Some players attempt more difficult passes and crosses (that may result in breakaways, scoring chances, favorable positioning, etc) where attempting a lower % pass is worth risking loss of possession.

            Sometimes the cause of the missed pass isn’t the fault of the passer, but due to a poor pass prior to that.

            Sometimes teammates don’t get in good position to receive the pass or make poor runs (such as Wambach in all of 2015).

            In the end, the only thing those stats tell me is that Carli touched the ball a lot, which is what you’d expect from players playing in the middle of the field, or someone like Carli who roams around quite a bit.

            Now if someone had some serious outliers, like 30 passes attempted, 15 completed (50%), it’s very likely they didn’t take care of the ball and were the root cause of a lot of the turnovers.

          • NYRick

            Great points. It’s just like watching an NFL QB go something like 15 for 27 for 212 yards, 1 TD, 1 pick. Now analyze it further if you really watched the game or rewatched the tape. You would notice that there were 6 blatant, bad drops, 2 were definite TDs, one was even going for about 75 yards. So then if things worked out for said QB, he could have been staring at a 21 for 27 for 380 yards and 3 TDs (i.e. an all-world game). Now if it happened in a playoff game or even an SB, then he becomes legendary. Phil Simms went 22 for 25 in the SB and Giants fans can surely never remember him to be that pinpoint accurate. But the stars aligned for him that day. There was even a crazy deflection off of Mark Bavaro into the diving hands of Phil McConkey in the end zone. Stats are interesting. Let’s leave it at that, but never tell the whole story.

          • Kevin

            There are also good incompletions such as throwing the ball away to avoid a 10-yard sack. So even though it’s viewed as a negative stat it results in a 10-yard gain (avoids a 10-yard loss).

          • NYRick

            Excellent point. A throw-away to avoid a ten yard sack and put you at 2nd and 20 is so important in the context of a game. Especially in a one score possession game against two evenly matched teams. Field position is so underrated in an American football game.

            But back to your points. I think you view it much like me from the standpoint of “what do my eyes tell me” when watching a match? A great lead up pass or defensive break-up and subsequent lead in to a quick counter and scoring opportunity don’t make it’s way to a stat sheet. But they are big plays. As important as a great cross or well placed header goal.

          • #1Fan

            the problem with all these WoSo stats is that they are mostly gained in games that are not competitive in any way, shape or form. It would be like recording NFL stats for drill vs the scout team.. US women rack up gaudy numbers, but against who ?

          • Steglitz49

            Why do you think that Marta is still considered the greatest?

            And of the two WC finals, outside of the US it is the 2011 one that will be remembered? –, even if 8-1 in 1981 is not.

          • Steglitz49

            Sometimes you kick the ball into touch because it is better than being robbed of it. Sometimes you have to concede a corner though you try to get it out over the long side and just concede a throw-in.

            A classic example of playing stupid was in the dying seconds of the QF in 2011. Brazil just needed to kill time down by the US’s corner flag but instead the player tried a trick to get yet another goal. The rest is herstory. Don’t show off; play safe. Play to win.

          • Steglitz49

            Thank you.

          • A_Dog_Without_A_Clutch

            A reading from The Bible…err The Complete Handbook of Pro Basketball (1992):

            “SHOOTING: You look at the Knick shooting numbers: .485, tied for eighth in the league and fourth best in the East. Seems like there is no problem. Wrong. See you can come out to .485 shooting .530 one night and .440 the next. Which is typical Knicks. A monument to inconsistency, the Knicks can look great one night, unworthy of a quick and painless execution the next.”

            Stats are just a byproduct of behavior. They give you a framing of the story, but they are not the complete story. You have to marry them with observation.

          • NYRick

            Yeah I like that, “Stats are just a byproduct of behavior.” Makes a lot of sense to how teams and individuals play within a system in really any sport. Don’t forget the system you play in. And the climate or stadium they play in too. For years, take someone like Peyton Manning who played half of his games in a dome (Drew Brees too). Not to say they aren’t fantastic QBs, but their stats get inflated indoors no doubt. Then someone like Eli Manning and especially Tom Brady playing in cold weather most of the time on the East coast makes a big difference. That’s why I consider Aaron Rodgers to be the best of all doing what he’s doing in frigid Green Bay.

          • A_Dog_Without_A_Clutch

            Roethlisberger has more talent in his pinky than all those QB’s combine (well Peyton may not deserve that sight). The problem with the Steelers are they are saddled with coach in Mike Tomlin who is doctor that gives consistently terrible diagnoses but gets the benefit of the doubt because he has a good “bedside manner”.

      • Scarlet Knight Watch

        Facts show Lloyd to be a ball hog.

      • F0OtballNowAndAlways

        Carli Lloyd had a great game, but it seemed to me like she was trying a little too hard to score in the run of play. I am not saying she shouldn’t have been making concerted efforts to score, just that she just seemed to be trying too much. With Morgan and Press, I just got the feeling they were simply trying, not trying too hard. I suppose it is a matter of individual perception, but that is what I saw.

    • Steglitz49

      Which passes were long and which were short? Which passes were under pressure and which were at leisure?

      Did neither Alex Morgan nor Christen Annemarie hit a single pass?

      • HOFCToDi

        The link was provided. Do your own research.

        • Steglitz49

          You typed the list but left the biggest name in US WoSo off and also your least favourite player, Christen Annemarie. Why on earth not include them?

          Just type them in, there is a good sport.

          • HOFCToDi

            Hannibal Lecter to Agent Starling:

            Pity about poor Steglitz49, though. Tick-tock, tick-tock, tick-tock, tick-tock.

          • weltmeister

            you are so stupid

          • Guesting

            Actually you both have a lot in common. While you waste all your time dumping on the NWSL or the US Soccer team, he likes to waste his time dumping on someone like you. Just beware of the fact finding mission he is on. You certainly want hear the end on it if you get on the bad side of him.

          • Steglitz49

            What have Peter Pan and Tinkerbell to do with this? Captain Hook

  • Guest

    Very O/T but I think I have to watch more amateur French football (!!!)

    https://youtube.com/watch?v=rK6OL9uCrkA

    • HOFCToDi

      Abby Wambach – Lady Andrade Round 2 pay per view?

    • Nicole C.

      That was a proper fight, not a lone sucker punch or that deranged BYU ponytail puller. I wonder what and who started it.

  • Silver Frost

    Thank you NBC for broadcasting this game, although only 7,000 people showed up.

    Thank you NBC for the 5 or 6 camera angles for the marvelous goal of Christen Press.

    Thank you Jill Ellis for putting MalPugh into the game.

  • chive-on

    Fantastic game from the US in all areas. Imo assuming Rapinoe will not make it back in time for Rio, this is the starting lineup that should be at the Olympics. Agree with all subs – except Hinkle. Ellis must like her as she continues to see playing time at left back, but I have no idea why when O’Hara is far superior and keeps sitting on the bench. Horan and Pugh continue to impress.

    • schoup

      Actually it was pretty poor performance despite the score line. 3 or 4 players had a good game in reality.

  • weltmeister

    5-0 against costa rica,costa rica is 8 time olympic champion and 16 time world champion
    the uswnt win against costa rica is so AWESOME for the uswnt.

    sarcasm

    • Questing

      Wow, and thanks you for explaining it to us. Don’t let Jersey Shores Rises here you talk like that, unless you want to be added to his Moron list.

  • #1Fan

    Another game in which the only conclusion I can draw is that WoSo is pretty irrelevant. The playing field is so tilted that watching uncompetitive games is just dull. Until the RoW starts to care about WoSo, you can draw any conclusions you want.

    • Steglitz49

      The US does not have it all their way against every team and the SheBelieves Cup hopefully will be a bit more even.

      Nevertheless, your point is well taken that if WoSo now enters into a phase where the USWNT dominates everything then the NCAA college games in the US and the European club competitions like Champions League and FA Cup will grow in signficance, as will the European and Asian Championships.

      • #1Fan

        I hope it grows OUJTSIDE the US . I really do.

        • Steglitz49

          The German Chancellor showed up for the last ladies Champions League Final. She was also directly responsible for Germany hosting WC-11.

          The ladies FA Cup final last year was played at Wembley for the first time ever. >30,000 showed up.

          The game is growing in Europe but the US with its 315m is more than Engl+Ger+Fra+Spa+NL+Nordic countries combined

        • Captain Crunch

          Who invited Debbie Downer to the party?! Do you only watch Concacaf matches? If so, then made that would explain your pessimistic outlook. Japan made it to the WWC final and but for poor luck, it could have been England. France or Germany easily could have won WWC15 and Brazil will be tough in Rio as well. The US is playing well no question but no one is picking up their ball, going home and conceding defeat. Not to mention that the US college system has supported the soccer careers of many a foreign athlete. Look no further than Rodriguez at Penn St or Florida State’s success.

          Pretty much every women’s sport outside the top 10 becomes minimally competitive. This applies to women’s basketball, lacrosse, field hockey, tennis, etc. It doesn’t make it less enticing to watch as long as the top tier is playing at a high level.

          • #1Fan

            So a different perspective is not welcome? I actually don’t understand your point at all. What is pessimistic about hoping it grows OUTSIDE the USA? There is no compelling competitive reason to watch any of these games and I hope that changes.

          • #1Fan

            one more thing, I don’t know what you mean by “supported the soccer careers of many a foreign athlete” . My point is that the Us college system underpins the USWNT and as long as that incentive is there, it will be very hard for other countries to compete without huge state , private or corporate funding. Those athletes are here because they are good enough and also represent huge value scholarship wise when compared to local talent of similar ability

      • rkmid71

        I disagree. I enjoy watching Golden State (48-4 record as we speak), San Antoniio Spurs (45-8), UConn women’s b-ball team (60 game winning streak), Wooden’s UCLA Bruin teams with Walton, Kareem and 10 NCAA titles in 12 years. The old Soviet national hockey team (one of the most dominant teams of all time in international play) which beat the Canadian All-Star team 8-1 in 1981. That’s what makes the Miracle on Ice special. I love hearing stories about the Mighty Magyars. I want to see the USWNT dominate international soccer. In no way does that make it irrelevant — it’s expected that they dominate Concacaf opponents. It’s when the USWNT starts to dominate Germany, Japan, France, England, Brazil, China, and other top teams that I’m looking forward to. If and when it happens, I don’t think those countries will just say “we don’t care”.

        • AlexH

          But those countries aren’t enough. It is the Costa Ricas and Mexicos of the world that have to stick with it and they might just lose interest because they really don’t care. What makes the Warriors such a great watch is that they are destroying other NBA teams. If they were beating teams from Costa Rica and Ireland nobody would care.

          • Guesting

            Want competition. Why not have 4 US Regional Teams competing Internationally?

          • rkmid71

            Being in a weak confederation (other than Canada) doesn’t help the WNT. But I don’t get the sense that Mexico, Costa Rica, etc. are conceding anything despite the fact that they are not competitive at the moment. Heck if I recall, it wasn’t that long ago that Mexico somehow eliminated the US in 2011 World Cup qualifying. Why do you think T&T and some of these teams are playing 17-18 year olds against the WNT? Other confederations are quite strong, Japan is in for a battle in the AFC Olympic qualifying. UEFA is strong. CONMEBOL has Brazil and Colombia. Africa has some up and coming teams that are fun to watch (Cameroon, Nigeria).

          • nwslfan

            One way to improve Mexico team is to fire Leo Cuellar. Don’t get how he keeps his job.

        • Steglitz49

          It could be said of the Mighty Magyars, that they won all their matches except the one that mattered, the 1954 WC final.

          In many ways, the WC-11 final is its mirror image for the ladies, which is why that night in Frankfurt will be remembered forever.

          WoSo at the olympics — who cares? Not even the Norwegians by most accounts.

          • rkmid71

            I care. The women play with their full teams so makes it more meaningful, versus the men. The Norwegians might care if they qualify. And the Swedes? You likely will have most of the top 10 teams in the world — excluding England. And that the tournament is in Brazil, the spiritual home of football, adds intrigue and excitement and you never know, this could be Marta’s last big show. And the Swedes care about Marta.

          • Steglitz49

            It makes no sense to repeat the World Cup a year after. The men have got it right.

            8-1 in 1981 ain’t nearly as well known as Lake Placid but it was at Lake Placid that Stenmark took his double golds and Annemarie won her downhill gold and so did Stock. Annemarie went on to run a cafe/restaurant and Stock started a hotel that he still runs. Btw Andrea Henkel and her hubby Tim Burke live there. We stayed at a Best Western right down by the lake and woke up to see a loon on the lake, so loons have a special meaning in our relationship. Loony, you might say.

    • guest

      maybe one day they will be as competitive as the european men’s leagues.

  • Altius

    Ok, that Press goal was RIDICULOUS.

    While Heath has the best dribbling skills and Pinoe is the most creative, Press’ technique is second to none on that team. Astonishing, instinctive skill.

    Pugh is going to be a damn good player for the USWNT. Remarkable composure for someone so young.

    And Morgan Brian…rocky start but once she settled, she was everywhere – intercepting, ball-winning, distributing transitionally – excellent display. If I could have her do one tape study for the next year, it would be to watch game footage of Sergio Busquets nonstop. She’s that style of defensive midfielder…elegant, composed, relying on perfect positioning and passing, not your traditional tackling bruiser. I hope she studies him relentlessly.

    Decent game, overall. I was most impressed by the willingness to collectively press and hassle for the ball to regain possession. Encouraging sight. Will be very interested to see how this younger, fresh-faced team stacks up against the heavies in March – Germany, France, and England!

    • Ethan

      How do you feel about Luka Modric’s play? I will admit that I haven’t watched much of his play, but I have heard a lot of high opinions from people about his play, especially his defensive play given his physical stature. Maybe Brian can watch some of him and Makelele (a player who I have watched a lot of). She can also check out some tapes of Amandine Henry’s play if she can get a hold of them.

      Edit: Don’t let her watch the “peek-a-boo”. (Kind of just joking.)

      • Altius

        Modric is one of the best midfielders in the world, but he plays a much different role than that of Busquets and Brian. Modric is really a central midfielder, more similar to the Barcelona role of Xavi/Iniesta, while Busquets is the pivote, the silent conductor, the most essential part of the way the team plays. He’s responsible for the interception and the transition.

        Makelele (though I admit I haven’t watched nearly enough of him) was more of a physical, young-Yaya Toure-crossed-with-Xabi Alonso if I’m not mistaken? One of the reasons I mention Busquets is not only is he the best player in his position in the world, but he was underestimated and undervalued initially due to his slight, gangly physique. He doesn’t have the power or speed to perform like your average defensive midfielder…like Morgan Brian.

        Both Vincente del Bosque and Luis Enrique have said that if they could be reincarnated as any player in the world, it would be Sergio Busquets. They know. He’s that good.

        Also, Amandine Henry is amazing. I need to watch more France games if only for her and Louisa Necib alone.

        • Ethan

          Alright. Thanks for the info on Modric. I mentioned him because of his slight build and because he’s played a lot as one of the two in a double pivot. I brought up Makelele because he’s short, not all that physically intimidating, and played as a lone holder for Chelsea. He certainly wasn’t afraid to get physical and put in hard tackles, but his positioning and awareness are what made him so good. Makelele however wasn’t world-class at setting tempo and playing defense-splitting passes; so, Brian won’t learn anything about those two aspects from watching Makelele.

          Same with regards to Henry and Necib although I’m a Boulleau fan as well.

  • htm222

    The depth of the US team and imbalance of talent w/r/t these international matches makes womens soccer even more painful to watch than it already is. I just don’t find it fun to watch the likes of Lloyd and Multimillionaire Celebrity Golden Girl Morgan steamroll these little Costa Rican girls, who probably have day laborer jobs in addition to playing soccer on the side.

    • Frozen Blue

      Wow you must be a big fan not to have noticed how far Costa Rica has come. They had an amazing World Cup and although this was not their best game they showed alot of talent and held off the US for large portions of the game. Yes it sucks to have the #1 team in the world in your region but that is hardly the US’s fault, they have to qualify for the Olympics just like everyone else.

      • #1Fan

        the US have the #1 team because they ultimately PAY for it. No other countries have the same incentive to play. None.

        • Steglitz49

          No other country has the NCAA and Title IX either.

          • #1Fan

            Exactly my point

          • Steglitz49

            I wish other countries would put their femal sports effeorts into a sort of NCAA-Title IX system. Education and salvation, not damnation.

          • schoup

            No country has title iX but if you follow NCAA a lot of foreign player come to US Colleges and it’s increasing every year.

          • Steglitz49

            A lot of foreigners come to FSU and I think at least one has won the Hermann trophy, a fat lot of use it did her.

          • Ethan

            Smith played college football in the US, and she’s universally known as England’s best ever female football player. Georges played for Boston College, and she’s done pretty well for herself.

          • Steglitz49

            I was thinking of the Japanese lass who did not become part of the Golden Generation. Maybe she got injured?

        • Frozen Blue

          Wow so by your reasoning the US should be punished for paying their women fairly, instead they should be treated like dirt with no development, no pay and no support because their just women.

          • #1Fan

            You miss the point totally. The US has a pathway for young women to play soccer. That pathway is paid for by parents who are often in search of better college opportunities or scholarships. we are not talking about the pay of professional athletes. Well I am not. T9 has created that pathway and other countries do not have that pipeline.

          • Frozen Blue

            I just don’t understand why you are lamenting US parents supporting women’s sports and the government supporting women’s sports just because other countries are not so forward thinking. There are plenty of high quality men’s soccer players that come out of the same poor countries that women soccer players don’t have the pathway you are speaking of. If they can do it for the men, they can do it for the women, they just won’t.

          • #1Fan

            Im not. I am citing is as to WHY they have and will maintain the advantage over other countries where parents do not have the same incentive. Its not forward thinking. it is a by product of certain Mens sports generating HUGE revenue and T9 mandating it. Do you really think these schools WANT to lose $$ on sports. On the mens side …False. the men emerge BECAUSE here is a financial incentive to do so. The small Brazilian club that produces a player reaps a HUGE financial gain. TV revenue trickles down as it increases the total $$ in the game and raises that number. The womens game has no such thing. Without the college carrot, the State has to fund it somehow and that does not fly in countries that have better things to spend $$ on.

    • #1Fan

      could not agree more. Sports have to be competitive or they are no longer sports. Picking a US team is just not really hard. You could pick another 23 players and still win these games easily. This game is not going anywhere until others actually care. WoSo is a product of Title 9 hence the USA dominance

      • Guest

        How do you explain Germany and France’s support of women’s soccer then? As far as player development goes I don’t think they are behind they just don’t have the same size player pool. I think this is an economics and culture issue in some countries more than solely a product of title 9.

        • #1Fan

          Size of player pool is T9 driven. Having a college path increases the number of aspiring players and incents parents to foot the bill. In other countries, no such path exists so unless a club, or country is going to pay for it …

          • Guest

            That doesn’t explain Germany or France’s success just the US’s

          • #1Fan

            define success. France as a nation have their Clarefontaine academy. they hand select and develop . Germany are similar. So that is 2 countries. Even England are only recently starting to take it remotely seriously . And that is limited. Man united have no team at all. WoSo is just not competitive yet .

          • Steglitz49

            Man Utd closed down their WoSo ten years ago. Their WoSo team in City’s.

          • #1Fan

            Correct.

          • Guest

            They are all competitive with the US without having nearly as large a player pool. You claim there is no competition but I think there is at least among many of the top ten international teams in the sport. Brazil, Australia, Japan and Sweden who are all competitive even if the odds of beating to top teams ar stacked against them. Overall population is probably more important to the size of the player pool. Some evidence of this is the Olympics Medal domination of the USA and China.

            Also, it isn’t like the men’s leagues aren’t top heavy in Europe. The NWSL by comparison is rather well balanced despite many players having to settle to play for a very low income. The sport is still in it’s infancy. Growth will take time.

          • #1Fan

            well time will tell. Money drives sports and I just don’t see where the money will come form in other countries.

          • Steglitz49

            WoSo in Europe changed when Lyon started to put money into their ladies and it paid dividends. Soon the Emir followed suit at PSG. Arsenal have long had a WoSo side but did not spend too much on them but many of the men’s clubs are.

            Fiorentina in Italy have just started a WoSo section. They have gone one step further and proposed that only men’s clubs with a WoSo section should be eligible to play in the men’s Champions League. That would chuck out Real Madrid and Man Utd!

          • #1Fan

            All true. If you link the sports then all of a sudden some things change. BUT the pipeline of players will almost certainly flow to where the $$ are. So you will see US players going to Europe UNLESS USSF pays them huge $$ to stay here in NWSL

          • Guest

            It’s also about striving for parity in the NWSL. There are some owners in the NWSL who can afford to pay over the cap and still make money.

          • #1Fan

            Germany and France have taken a national approach, The taxpayer is footing the bill

          • Guest

            The best domestic clubs in France and Germany pay many of their players almost as much as the US player earn playing for the NT

          • Steglitz49

            No. That is a gross exaggeration. Very few of the women playing in Europe earn more than $125,000 a year. Most earn next to nothing if not actually nothing.

          • #1Fan

            This. And we are talking about development of players not necessarily paying pros. Those pros you refer to can come from a variety of countries and do .

          • Guest

            Most of their NT players are paid well. Lindsey Horan was paid very well. The issues are not much different for the non NT players in the NWSL

          • #1Fan

            you are missing the point . I am talking about who is going to pay to develop those players. Not how much a top pro makes once she is developed.

          • AlexH

            That’s the Achilles heel of development for women. An academy makes sense if you can expect to produce 1 player every couple years that can either attract a big transfer fee or avoid the necessity for shelling it out. There are no big transfer fees in woso and hence very little incentive to develop talent. The same can be said for the USA men BTW. MLS has such a hard salary cap that there is very little to be gained by investing in home grown players.

          • #1Fan

            back to my point . the female “academy” is the ECNL. parents pay. Colleges recruit. parents think they are getting a return on investment. Most are not.

          • Steglitz49

            Even their NT players are paid a fraction of what the USWNT clean up.

          • Guest

            In the WC and Olympic years sure. But a lot of that has to do with the USWNT popularity in the states and the revenue the team generates.

          • Steglitz49

            How does that help the poor European lasses?

          • Silver Frost

            I thought the big league men’s teams had female academies. That is where development takes place, no?

          • #1Fan

            no. not at all . there is no commercial incentive to do so in most countries.

          • schoup

            The development in France and Europe has come from the government and the club teams. The big clubs in europe have womens teams and the money they have to spend on them is pittens. The entire womens club salary/expenses is less than what they pay any starter and most bench players. They don’t really care it loses a few million euros, it’s nothing to them in the bigger scheme.

          • #1Fan

            they do? Some do. Most do not.

          • Guest

            State vs Individual. Policy founded on the distribution of wealth. Big brother knows best approach.

          • Oregon parent of 17-year-old

            Would prefer it be the taxpayer like in Germany, France and England. — Not the parent. And those players still get their FREE college or training.
            Crushing debt is still the reality for most US college students, even athletes. Let’s not sugarcoat it.

          • Guesting

            Let’s not sugarcoat it. It would mean paying a hell of a lot more in taxes for your free ride.

          • AlexH

            Free college also would require that fewer students go and that those students actually study something real. Otherwise we will just have a giant taxpayer subsidized endless summer camp program

          • AlexH

            I don’t think that a college scholarship is what is incentivizing girls to play soccer or their parents to foot the bill. Far better to put your money in a college savings plan than to spend it on club soccer dues.

            I do think that the opportunity to play in college however is an incentive, because it gives girls a chance to continue doing something they love at a higher lever. This is also probably the reason that women want to play in the NWSL despite the fact that most will play for peanuts and they know it.

          • #1Fan

            Do you have a daughter? Are you involved @ the youth lvl? If you are then I am very surprised you don’t see it . Since T9, the number of clubs, trainers and players has exploded. Why? A sudden love of the game? No. because colleges are offering a pot of gold. A rainbow that many players and parents are chasing and the clubs have EVERY incentive to stoke the dream because they make $$ off of it.

          • AlexH

            Yes I have a daughter and I have precisely made the calculation about the “value” of club soccer vis a vis getting a college scholarship. Fortunately I have the means to provide my daughter a high level sports experience while still setting aside money for college. If that situation ever changed and I was forced to choose the college fund wins and it isn’t even close.

          • #1Fan

            again ..of course. But we are not talking about guys like you who see the fake value proposition. Many parents fall for it .

          • nwslfan

            I feel ya. I watched game on my phone bc I was w my daughter at pricey, but good, training last night. I doubt she gets a sniff at a sports scholarship, but I want her to be active in middle school and high school + develop a lifelong love for the game.

          • Terry Lash

            While I agree that the possibility of a college scholarship has encouraged female youth, and maybe even more their parents, to be serious about playing soccer, I also agree with AlexH that most families would be financially better off putting money into a college fund than spending money on travel teams and training. And, yes, I have been active in youth soccer, primarily with girls’ teams.

          • #1Fan

            of course they would . I agree with what SHOPULD be better, but that is not always what happens. The clubs are selling kool aid because that is how they get paid. they tell you how great your kid CAN be and then praise you when she gets 10k of soccer money to go to a poor D1 school. Most parents are somewhat blind when it comes to assessing their own.

      • sudeep das

        Agree with you regarding the lack of basic technique and quality of opposition outside the Top 5. However the last World Cup 2015 showed that other nations are catching up in spite of their cultural, financial inhibitions. And that is interesting. As a lover of the beautiful game we should encourage the women’s game considering that they have a handicap of about 70 odd years. The She Believe Cup will make some very good viewing – can’t wait.

        • #1Fan

          Are they catching up? How do you define that? WC Final was pretty one sided. I happen to believe that the US has such a massive advantage that IF they get development correct, they will never be caught. No other country has the same incentive. Some HS age kids are securing in effect 250 k “contracts” to play College soccer. That is more than most female pros earn. So the drive and incentive is there. In other countries, unless there is a commercial logic OR a nationalistic one – See Japan, France Germany AND they luck in to a golden generation, I cant see how they catch up UNLESS the US stubs its toe

          • Steglitz49

            This is more than true. College scholarships are not to be sneezed at and some of the very best women’s sports colleges are also among the very best universities in the world.

          • #1Fan

            Yes. There is a massive incentive. they are among the best universities AND amongst the most expensive.

          • Steglitz49

            $60-65,000 per year for Stanford and the likes. If you are not a CA resident, Berkeley and UCLA are not far behind.

          • #1Fan

            add accommodation … now its 80k per year x4

          • Silver Frost

            Plus, a degree from a top school is an excellent calling card for future employment opportunities, even if the player turns pro for a few years.

          • #1Fan

            it is the best deal out there if you can play at that level. However, not many kids actually can. And there are maybe 10 top destinations for soccer and academics.

          • schoup

            There’s more than 10.

          • #1Fan

            depends how you define to soccer. the top 30 or so academic schools in the USA are fairly uniformly agreed on. Just look at the list an then tell me who the perennial soccer powers are. I struggle to come up with 10 who achieve both tbh.

          • rkmid71

            I don’t think “perennial soccer powers” will really exist anymore. Recently you would have to say FSU — as they’ve won multiple times and consistent college cup participants. In the old days, obviously UNC. Heck UCLA had a losing record last year. Is that perennial? I think it’s going to be much more wide open in years to come — and even more so with certain rule and schedule changes.

          • #1Fan

            I am talking about 10 schools that combine academic and soccer excellence. cant put FSU on that list. UCLA are a perennial power as are UNC. Losing record or not – and lets be honest ACC is BY FAR the toughest conf, If recruiting classes are anything to go by, and early commits projected fwd, the rich are indeed getting richer from a soccer POV. This years UCLA class is certainly special and they project to add one of the top players next year as well. The desirable places to play don’t change.. 24 of this years top 25 are ACC or Pac12 15 ACC , 10 Pac12

          • rkmid71

            I think you’re putting too much credibility on those rankings. Many a college coach has said below the top few players, there are not significant talent differences and as you know projections forward are unpredictable. If the rich continuing to get richer, why isn’t UNC winning as much? As you know, the college cup had 2 Big 10 teams (incl. winner), 0 Pac 12, 2 ACC. Change the sub rules (more in line with int’l FIFA rules) and spread out the games out (so you’re not playing back to back or 2 in 3 days) and let’s see what happens. Re: the 10 best soccer schools that are in the group of top 30 academic I would name the following: Duke, Stanford, Ucal Berkeley, UCLA, UVA, UNC, Michigan, Notre Dame — and Princeton, USC, BC did reasonably well soccerwise this last year.

          • #1Fan

            First off, great discussion.
            UNC are doing fine. They play in the top conf and the very nature of the College Cup makes is like the FA Cup on steroids. Giant killing will happen esp when you go to penalties. If you put Penn State or Rutgers in the ACC last year, no way they win the league. In fact Rutgers probably struggle to finish 500.
            I would applaud the rule changes you mention, but I think that would widen the gap. UNC have taken advantage of these rules forever and I think they have dropped a bit because they have tended to recruit the same type of player and attempted to “pressure” other teams to death. As overall technique has improved, this works less well that it once did.
            Sounds like you are agreeing with me .. I think there are 10 schools that can lay claim to top academics and consistently strong soccer. I can only judge the last say 10 years, but the names have not changed much. If you look at say the current u17/u17 player pool , they are mostly committed to the same group of schools. It is very self fulfilling.

          • rkmid71

            I think we agree on many things. UNC is adapting and will be fine though one wonders after AD retires — but that history will always be a draw. For top soccer players, most rational people with strong academics are going to focus on the top academic schools — so those schools have a built-in recruiting advantage. Some top players will bypass D1 and even go to top academic D3 schools. Speculating about Rutgers in ACC, I’m not sure they wouldn’t do better than you think — their defense and goalie would keep them in every game. They shutout UVA which not many could do last year and very few goals allowed on the season. Re: the rule changes, my theory is that many teams can find and recruit 11-12 really good players (starting 11), especially at the better academic schools — that can be competitive with the top schools mentioned above. The difference is that those 7-8 bench players at the top schools are better than the 7-8 bench players at other teams — so the level doesn’t drop much with subs. So if you have liberal sub rules, those teams with better subs will use that to their advantage — and it’s compounded by having games close together with minimal recovery time — essentially forcing the teams with less depth to spread out playing time — thus weakening themselves.

          • #1Fan

            Rutgers -the GK is fantastic. I think UVA had a poor finishing day and RU defended well. 2-0 in a shoot out,you expect to win. Works well in a one off game, but i think in league play, they would be exposed. I hear you on the subs, but from what I see,give a better team more time to plan and rest,they will be better. Again, good debate 🙂

          • Guesting

            So are you saying at Stanford, the scholarship money doesn’t cover housing?

          • #1Fan

            not sure on Stanford.

          • Guesting

            In most cases, full ride scholarships I am aware of, include food and housing, too.

          • #1Fan

            yes they do . I was just saying not sure if 65 was tuition only.

          • Steglitz49

            The figure I quote for Stanford covers everything, except travel to and from Stanford.

          • schoup

            If you’re not CA resident you have very very slim chance of getting into those state schools. It’s even hard for CA residents.

          • rkmid71

            I’m hearing that CA colleges have been opening themselves up more to out of state students — that are able and willing to pay the high out of state tuitions. I’m assuming that’s largely driven by the need to shore up their financial position.It allows them to keep tuitions low for in-state — though fewer in state would be admitted.

          • I don’t think the 2nd-best team made it to the Final of the WC this year. That’s why it was one-sided. Japan had quite a bit of luck making it through to the Final. I think you would have seen a more competitive game had the U.S. been playing a different team.

          • Steglitz49

            Most people would agree that FIFA’s biased draw and fiddling with the seeds not only helped the US, as it was designed to do, but also incidentally helped Japan.

            The fact that France could have gotten themselves over to the weaker side of the draw had they played smart instead of enjoying a pyrrhic victory, is not FIFA’s fault.

            Finally, you could argue that by definition the teams in the final are those that deserve to be there because they got there. The US had luck on its side against Germany.

          • Ethan

            I couldn’t agree more on Japan having luck on its side in its progression to the final. Just getting by Switzerland and Cameroon, only beating Ecuador 1-0, winning via an offside goal against Australia, and Bassett’s own goal winner in the semifinal. Even Japan’s win against the Netherlands wasn’t entirely convincing. (That goal was absolutely fantastic though.) Honestly, Japan’s play once the game was 4-0 was probably the best the team played all tournament long. I know people say you make your own luck, but if Japan had won the 2015 WWC, it would have been the most unconvincing tournament win I’d ever seen.

          • I felt bad for both Australia and England, both of whom I thought played better than Japan the whole tournament.

      • nwslfan

        Agree with you. CR Fed has lavished more resources on its men’s team. If it put more resources into its women’s program, particularly at youth level, it will reap better results. How T&T Fed treats its WNT should be criminally punished.

        • ARED

          But to be fair, it’s not as if Costa Rica’s men side gets red carpets and golden airplanes either….

          Money has to come from somewhere, and tiny nations can’t be expected to subsidize sports teams blindly or endlessly. In fact, it’s a major issue when they do -adding to corruption and other problems. Colombia in the 90’s, Central America and the isle nations at times, Africa most of the time. Even Ghana, and African success story, had a WC meltdown over money and disorganization.

          • Steglitz49

            On the NT level we can look forward to an increasing dominance by the US, Ger, Eng and Fra. They could be the perennial SFs of WoSo.

            Let’s hope other countries, like Australia, Norway, NL, Seden and Spain will get a look-in, even Brazil, Russia, Argentina and Japan — but I would not hold my breath.

    • Steglitz49

      In 1999 the USWNT inflicted the biggest defeat of Japan ever (9-0). In 2011 Japan repaid the favor by hoisting the WC trophy. The Nadeshiko have continued to be a factor in WoSo in spite of their small sizes and lower weight. Punching above their weight, you might say.

      • Guest

        As the technical side of the game catches up with other bigger more physical teams, size will eventually be a problem for them.

        • Steglitz49

          I would say that the WC-15 final is a good example.

          In a year or two the Golden Generation will be gone and the Nadeshiko will be a middling team. They lasted longer than one might have expected and unlike the Mighty Magyars 60 years earlier the Nadeshiko won the WC (and reached a second final)!

        • ARED

          They lost the WC final b/c of the inability to compete with the USA on set pieces.

      • AlexH

        It’s not size and weight it is fitness and toughness. Japan might have been small but they were extraordinarily tough and didn’t allow themselves to be pushed around by the bigger teams and they had the energy to play their game for 120 minutes. Sawa may be an artist, but she is an artist with elbows.

        • Steglitz49

          Judging by the fact that they won WC-11 dismissing not just the US but the hosts, Germany, and sweden (who had beaten the US in their group game) says a lot.

          They then reached the final of WC-15 too.

          I suspect that time has more or less run out for the Golden Generation but at least they have their success, unlike the Mighty Magyars of 60 years before.

    • Silver Frost

      Never is a long time. If the princess decides to have a family post-OG, then Press would be the starting FW. And Morgan might just retire.

      • htm222

        I wouldn’t be surprised if she follows in the footsteps of her good friend Leroux, who seemed similarly into the limelight, but has a lot of charm/charisma so that makes sense. I never understood how Syd played with those big breast implants though… I would be so nervous about falling or getting hit hard.

        • #1Fan

          at times the qualities you speak of seem to be more valued that ability. leroux is not a good soccer player. She is a fast player with an interesting story .

          • htm222

            I don’t even find Morgan all that charismatic, but she is good looking enough and a striker. Same with Lloyd, I find her really offputting for some reason, but I have a feeling she’s not the warm and fuzzy type and her teammates don’t really have a close relationship with her either. Syd probably had the best personality but yeah, not too many memorable performances.

          • ARED

            “I have a feeling she’s not the warm and fuzzy type”
            -Lloyd didn’t even let her fiance attend the WC…lol. So yeah, I think your feeling is pretty accurate….ha.

            Rapinoe has to be mentioned for charisma/personality!

        • Steglitz49

          Please withdraw the second sentence of your comment.

          • Lorehead

            The post you were replying to consists of a single sentence.

          • Steglitz49

            It does not. There is a fullstop — sorry, a period — after the words “that makes sense” and before the offending material.

            With losers like you, how can WoSo hope to get respect?

            Are you StegWatch, StegPatrol and StegWorld all rolled into one?

            Please go back to figuring out the difference between a subsidy and a marginal profit while you are at it.

          • Lorehead

            It was edited later to add a second sentence, and Disqus showed me only the original version. Yes, that second sentence was pretty bad.

            I’m sorry that my explanation, of why your assumptions about the profitability of the Thorns and the USWNT are wrong, flew over your head.

          • Steglitz49

            Always check your references and look before you leap. Six hours is 6 hours. Granted it is not a week.

            You can redeem youurself by downvoting that garbage comment by htm222 now, please. That will help the cause of WoSo.

          • Lorehead

            Checking references is a good idea, but Disqus does make it very inconvenient to reload, re-read and notice small changes.

          • Steglitz49

            I have not found that but never mind. You can still downvote him (less likely to be her, but you never can tell).

    • Kevin

      I’d rather watch the USWNT steamroll someone than watch the USMNT squeek out a win over Iceland, a country with a population of 320,000 of which less than 60,000 are males ages 15-40. USA population = 321,000,000.

      Talk about painful to watch.

  • AlexH

    After last night I’m now OK with the livestream. These games are definitely not must see TV. Maybe the team should go on strike as our scrubs would probably make for a more interesting game.

    • guest

      You’re right, the B team would certainly make for a more interesting game. It’s not even a fair competition against our A team.

    • ARED

      This is why I said I thought the TV deal the USA got was “fine”. Sure it’s nice to have all games on TV, but honestly will you draw many new fans who happen to see 5-10 minutes of a game like that?

      Just wait until Puerto Rico…..(highest ever FIFA ranking: 92)…..

      • Steglitz49

        Will the SheBelieves cup be televised? Maybe if you log on to some site that picks up French, German and English channels? I can’t remember what has been planned.

  • guest

    CR was slow, slow, slow. And the US pounced on every ball. Maybe if they practiced more with men (or boys) they could increase their tempo a bit, and we wouldn’t have to watch all the lopsided games in this confed? Kudos to NBC for the truly free webcast. It may be they’re upping their game now that foxsportsgo offers free stuff on the web. Still no excuse for NBC’s horrid olympics coverage though.

    • Silver Frost

      The stream last night was peerless in HD quality. I wish NWSL could do something like that. I would pay a fee to watch, if it was.

  • schoup

    Hardly a good performance overall despite the score. Only 3 or 4 players had a good game of the 13 field players used. Ridiculous number of horrible and unforced turnovers by MF, Defense, etc…75% of the team seemed like they were playing with stone feet most of the game with bad 1st touches, passing people into trouble, making passes centrally that weren’t there. Even Broon and JJ did that on several occasions making a central pass that was intercepted that would be a dangerous counter against a good team.

    • AlexH

      I think that once they were up 3-0 the players just dialed it back and were looking to get out of the game without injury rather than trying to run up a score. That ref BTW was horrific and if I were on the field I would be saving my energy and mailing it in.

      • JL

        Tournaments are a marathon, not a sprint. Even tournaments with lesser competition like this one. No sense in continuing to burn energy when the job was pretty much done 15 minutes in. The players probably realized it was better to save something for the next game.

        • My2cents

          After jumping ahead 3-0 in the first 15 minutes, it would have been an opportune time to have the players focus more on connecting more effectively with their passes, on building from the back, working through the midfield, especially against a lesser talented team. But then that all comes back to Ellis and her approach to coaching. Just seemed like a wasted opportunity to practice on things in a game situation.

          • AlexH

            What they should have done was pass the ball around the back and try to kill the clock. See how long they could keep it up. Yes it makes for a boring game to watch but there will absolutely come a time where killing off a game becomes the most important thing in the world. If the WNT can do it for 60 minutes against CR maybe they could do it for 6 against Germany or France.

          • NYRick

            You’re right on this. I know the strategy is attack, attack, attack. But there is a very creative skill by a complete team in knowing how to take the air out of the ball and kill off the game on the ground. Typically it would be easy for the US team because players like Brunn and JJ in the back are good short fundamental passers and Hope organizes a backline very well. Besides most teams would be exhausted by the 60 or 70th minute mark from holding off the US in their third most of the match and offer little resistance in the final 20 minutes or so.

            Did you ever see the old Dean Smith “4 Corners” in his heyday with the great NC B-ball teams? In the days of college ball before the shot clock, Dean figured out that his team could put games on ice (even against top teams) with great passing and top notch foul shooting. That is a thing of beauty, teamwork, cohesion and skill to watch. Incredible disclipine and not boring by any means. When you watch something great, you know it and appreciate it.

          • nwslfan

            I don’t agree. I thought it was good strategy to continue a possession oriented attack, with an objective of scoring goals in 2nd half. USA kept the ball mostly in attacking half for last 45. Very few real counterattacking threats developed. Why not have this young team problem solve and create quality scoring chances when all 11 opponents are dug in their defensive half?

          • AlexH

            If they played keep away they would still have the option of attacking because the CR team would eventually have to come out to get the ball and the US could take advantage of the gaps.

          • ARED

            To an extent, yes. I will always maintain a team as good as the USWNT should be able to slow it down and speed it up within the flow of a match.

            Draw CR out with 2-3 spells of simple possession in the back, almost any team will push out somewhat even after only 25-30 seconds of possession. Then hit them hard when they do come out. (If they don’t come out, you wasted what, 3 minutes trying?).

          • Steglitz49

            The harsh reality is that matches between imbalanced teams are rarely entertaining unless you get your kicks out of your team ratcheting up a cricket score.

            Eventually, other nations in CONCACAF will be able to achieve what Japan did in less than a decade. Let’s hope there will be some regional development by 2023 and preferably already 2019.

            The SheBelkieves tournament will be the moment of truth and it is to USSoccer’s credit that they were able to stitch this together when the Algarve cup was denuded of good NTs.

          • nwslfan

            Hard to practice building from back if opponent generates few goal kicks. Hope didn’t boom many free balls forward, she played the ball to her backs. USA was not discourteous. This was not a friendly. USA worked on breaking down 11 in defensive half instead.

        • newsouth

          the draw is full of banana republic teams. what marathon?

        • schoup

          It doesn’t take energy to do simple things well. Passing the ball, having a good 1st touch, not passing people in a cul de sac, etc…You actually waste more energy scrambling after doing the silly things listed in the original post, than just playing nice possession game once ahead .

  • Jersey Shore Rises

    Watching the game last night I did notice the stands looked fairly empty for the stadium. I now see the attendance was only 8K which is probably the low for the team since pre WC2015. I guess not many women soccer fans in Frisco Tx and hopefully the semi’s and Final in Houston will sell out.

    • Eh. I do think Houston is a bigger soccer city than DFW (Frisco). USWNT games are seen as “family-friendly” and that seems to be their target market. A week-night game isn’t going to draw as well with families. There will be more attendance on Saturday night.

      • F0OtballNowAndAlways

        Yesterday’s weeknight game seems to have been big with 5 or 6 year old girls. I am pretty sure it was a different set of tykes the camera showed every time it zoomed in on a group chanting U-S-A.

      • Steglitz49

        Excuses, excuses?

        • Lorehead

          Steglitz, some regressions have more than one independent variable. If you want to predict WoSo attendance, on a weekend is one important variable, and our team playing is another.

          • Steglitz49

            If Frozen blue is correct that the MNT drew 9274 vs Cananda, then this match at 8k must be seen as the failure it is.

            Let’s wait and see what Saturday night has in its store and, more relevant, the SheBelieves tournament. Matches like Eng-Ger, Fra-Ger and Eng-Fra will be the litmus test.

          • Kevin

            3 games over 6 days at the same location is not a fair comparison to a stand-alone game. People who have to travel more than an hour or two are probably going to pick the weekend game tomorrow against Mexico.

          • Steglitz49

            I was exaggerating for effect.

            Nevertheless, Costa Rica was seen as rising NT and a possible qualifier, with the current Hermann trophy winner in their squad.

          • Kevin

            I think you’ll see a much bigger turnout today. I know of two friends flying down from Cincinnati, Ohio, to take their daughters to go to the game today. My guess is they won’t be at the game on Monday though due to work/school.

          • Steglitz49

            Of course. Well understood.

            Let’s trust they will get value for money.

          • Lorehead

            15,032. A shame CONCACAF dropped the ball on the TV deal and the rivalry game that determined whether the U.S. would advance didn’t air live.

        • guest

          At least our NT doesn’t live off the public dole like the NT does in Sweden. They charge about $2 for a ticket to watch their WNT. It’s true–$2. I bet the public transport network in Sweden works a lot better too. No hours-long drives into the city and sitting in traffic jams. I would bet that for the average US fan it takes at least an hour to get to the stadium and the tickets are, what?, minimum $30. So please shut up before you criticize fandom in the US.

          • Steglitz49

            Your comment applies to any NT in Europe except possibly England.

    • schoup

      Week night game during school time.. Crowd will be much bigger for the game saturday, the semi is on friday night and the final on sunday. USWNT crowds are heavily dependent on kids more than MNT.

      • Steglitz49

        Excuses?

        • Frozen Blue

          USMNT Feb 5, 2016 vs Canada (a Friday) attendance…9274, what is their excuse?

          • ARED

            No one wants to watch a team that resembles a ship adrift at sea? ; p

          • Steglitz49

            9,274 > 8,000

          • Steglitz49

            How does that help WoSo’s cause? That the women can’t even beat the men for attendance.

          • HOFCToDi

            The attendance at the Algarve Cup is deplorable. Fix your own backyard.

          • Kevin

            3 games over 6 days at the exact same location.

    • Steglitz49

      8K? Holy cow!! Where is HOFCToDi when we need him?

      • HOFCToDi

        26 November 2015
        Germany versus England
        Attendance: 6,705

        • Steglitz49

          Thank you. But. Those were firendlies. This is a qualifying for a tournament that Americans seem to care for even if the ROW do not.

          • HOFCToDi

            The USWNT attendance is still better than most recent German Women’s National Football Team attendance.
            End of story.

          • TC

            That’s the difference between having a passport and not. Soccer is a world sport. Many Americansare uninterested in “world sports” – apparently it’s un-American. Whatever. It’s sad. Lacrosse is an original American sport and it’s still undervalued and unappreciated. The rest of the world grows up in favelas and barrios with a hand-sewn soccer ball at their feet. Soccer’s a sport for the working class irregardless of where you are in the world. Unfortunately, it’s a concept many Americans don’t grasp, neither is cheering for your home nation in any sport. It’s ok, there’s a minority population (my family included) out there who cares, just look at American Outlaws.

    • HOFCToDi

      MLS Attendance

      mlssoccer.com/post/2015/10/26/mls-sets-new-attendance-records-seattle-hold-highest-average-league

  • F0OtballNowAndAlways

    Christen Press needs more minutes. And she needs a better agent, because YouTubers consider her the best thing since flat screen monitors.

    Carli Lloyd needs better finishing.

    Carli Lloyd deserves more credit for consistently scoring penalties.

    Penalty looks like a dive only when viewed on replay in slow-mo. Viewed as it happened during the run of play, it was an absolute hacking. If you believe it did not happen in the box, that is one thing, but it was a foul.

    Alex Morgan needs a little finesse on her shots. Blasted two right at goalie. Sometimes, a chip might be good idea.

    Costa Rica needs more athleticism.

    Costa Rica needs better strategy. If you are playing an opponent pressuring you in your own defensive third, a more feasible strategy would be trying to lob balls upfield to hopefully connect with teammates, rather than making short passes withing your defensive area that go nowhere, and that are often intercepted.

    Alex Morgan makes runs to draw opponents to herself so her teammates could make hay? I guess she doesn’t employ that strategy in every game because I saw none of that yesterday. All I saw was a player striving to engage the ball as much as possible. Didn’t observe any of those “runs”. I guess they will never be mentioned when she plays well, as she did yesterday.

    It should have been more than 5 – 0. I doubt Lloyd misses chances like the Pugh cross again. The header straight to the arms of the CR goalie I chalk up to maybe underestimating the net minder.

    All in all a good game. If only the team wore shorts that flatter women, then my happiness would be complete. No, I am not talking about volleyball-type shorts.

    • Steglitz49

      You are living dangerously with — “If only the team wore shorts that flatter women” — seeing that time caught up with Sepp eventually.

      Where are StegWatch, StegPatrol and StegWorld when we need them? Do we need those inadequate types, come to think of it.

      It is a pity that WoSo needs reminding that there is nothing wrong with being feminine.

      • AlexH

        I think the reason that the woso players don’t wear flattering clothes is that they fear that doing anything differently from the men will cause them to be taken less seriously. Thus women wear the same saggy-baggies that the men do.

        If this were 1975 I’m pretty sure the gals would have no problem wearing the short shorts and would probably be aghast if anybody suggested they show a little less leg. So if people feel strongly about woso players showing a little more off, then hope that the bros start wearing the Uraguay kit.

        • Steglitz49

          Beach volleyball and track-n-field would argue against your case.

          I doubt that the WoSo players have even thought about it. They are so tied up with playing the game they love, that such basic points escape them. Some of them, like Alex, seem to understand the value of marketing — or, at least her agent can explain it to her.

          When the sportsgalas come along the ladies glam up, like Carli in Zurich, but that is because the PR-teams and designers take control. Stephanie Roche is another example and someone who really maximized her 15 minutes of fame.

          • ARED

            I don’t know….have/do any of you folks play!!??

            Now you want the girls to play on turf, and not only that, they have to expose more skin??

            Girls do wear different/shorter shorts than men, and in the days/levels when that isn’t true you saw/see a lot of extreme rolling and sewing done to compensate. I’m not sure what you want, aside from the Puma scuba shirts that Arsenal/Uruguay/etc wear…?

          • Steglitz49

            The line between acknowledging the audience and getting selfabsorbed in your sport is a fine one for sure.

            Nevertheless, if the spectators do not turn up neither will the sponsors and then you don’t have a business — excpet being kept by a wealthy sugardaddy be it a rich owner or a wealthy men’s club. The women had better chose.

            Warmth is not the issue. Virtually all the NWSL matches are played in the warm part of the year. Likewise, the big international tournaments, except the ladies Champions League and the ladies top divisions in France, Germany and Spain play in the summer too.

            Protection against sliding on artificial surfaces is valuable — yes, of course, well understood.

            But. Remember. What are you selling? A slower and weaker version of the men’s game — soccer for rabbits and chipmunks — or a game of lionesses, tigresses and leopardesses? In that case, let it be clear fom the stands that it is the female of the species out there kicking the ball about. Ponytails are not enough.

          • rkmid71

            Clearly these women are lionnesses, tigresses, and leopardesses. Check out the Victoria Maidens of the Legends Football League. That no doubt is too extreme for soccer. But what those women are doing is simple marketing to pack stadiums, gain sponsors, to have matches aired on TV. As you say, men are naturally bigger, stronger, faster – and the games therefore match this standard. This is more for the women to debate amongst themselves, but I don’t see much harm in the women having a little shorter shorts and tighter jerseys and flaunting their assets — especially if it gets more fans in the seats, etc. and they get paid a lot more. I think feminism is about women deciding for themselves.As others have said, athletic bodies are a healthy image for young girls. Morgan’s bodypaint was amazing, sexy, tasteful, classy all at the same time.

          • ARED

            I just posted elsewhere, that I’m not sure how anyone can think the progression hasn’t been towards trimmer/slimmer cuts and more modern styles.

            I also don’t think there is any doubt about who is playing -after all, plenty of comments on this very site imply or say this outright (when talking about players they find attractive). Go on youtube or instagram and see the creepy(er) and over the top comments. If any athlete wants to take off their clothes, that is their choice. But asking them to do it on the field, for the satisfaction of strangers is gross. If the sport dies without creepy dudes/chicks sitting in the stands, then let it die. I know plenty of ladies who will still play in the park.

      • F0OtballNowAndAlways

        The designers of the current women’s jerseys seem to have gone out of their way to shear it of all femininity. The trouble with women, though, is you can’t efface physical attractiveness. Their physical beauty still comes through nonetheless. Women generally prize their physical attractiveness, and I wouldn’t be surprised if some of them thinking about taking up the game might be concerned about how it would affect their femininity.

        There is a difference between saying a woman is pretty and saying all she is is a pretty face.

        • Steglitz49

          It could be argued that the only thing you see is their faces.

          • F0OtballNowAndAlways

            It could be argued, but the argument would be weak. If I call a women pretty, I am making a specific, isolated comment about her. That description does not preclude me from ascribing other attributes to her. That is just one of many things I could say about her. I could additionally describe her as smart and talented, for example.

            Saying that all a woman is is a pretty face, on the other hand, distills her entire essence to that description and disqualifies alternate, potentially elevating characterizations.

            Moreover, women themselves love being called pretty. Now a gesture is not necessarily wholesome because the person or group it is directed to raises no objection to it, but that circumstance usually enables the person making the gesture to avoid censure or charges of arrogance.

          • Steglitz49

            I am on your side but the PC and Fi brigade ain’t let alone all the inadequates that hide behind StegWatch, StegPatrol and StegWorld.

        • ARED

          “The designers of the current women’s jerseys seem to have gone out of their way to shear it of all femininity”….

          Have you ever seen what women’s jersey’s looked like in the 90’s!!?? ; p

          • F0OtballNowAndAlways

            Well in the 90s they were hardly spending anything no women’s soccer. Wasn’t there a documentary where they alluded to sowing the numbers onto the Jerseys themselves?

          • ARED

            Probably. I’m just pointing out that if anything, the progression of women’s uniforms at the highest levels of the game has been from huge/baggy/classic fits and styles towards trim/fitted/modern ones.

            I seem to be in the minority here, but I think the uniforms should: 1) Bother you as little as possible while playing, and, 2) Look somewhat nice/patriotic -esp for national teams.

            Wearing makeup or doing photo shoots is one thing, but wanting players to adhere to “sex sells” while on the field is ridiculous -and I would add, insulting.

          • F0OtballNowAndAlways

            Not “sex sells”, more like “looking attractive” sells. I mean, don’t you think these shorts are a little too long? Wouldn’t slightly shorter shorts be more attractive and at the same time comfortable? As for the stripe down the side of the shorts, how about the classic 3 instead of 1? And how about the stripe terminating in the “V” cut at the bottom?

            What about material? I think Nylon is a very good, aesthetically pleasing material for shorts.

            I am not interested in objectification. I wouldn’t be support of outfits the team couldn’t wear in front of adoring first or second graders.

          • ARED

            Well, I do prefer Adidas to Nike if that’s what you’re saying…. ; )

            I don’t know, I try to avoid this conversation b/c I just don’t see the need for it I guess. I posted elsewhere: If women’s football goes broke b/c there isn’t enough sex appeal or attractiveness so be it, I don’t want any part in that. You can play for free in the park, wearing whatever feels good.

            I think the women look pretty darn professional and stylish on the pitch these days.

        • Sheik Urbooty

          Please get off the topic of revealing uniforms. If you want sex appeal, get a Playboy magazine. You should be happy they don’t have to wear head scarves. I am a dude btw and in my opinion, they reveal plenty.

          • F0OtballNowAndAlways

            You misunderstand me. I am not pushing for anything that objectifies women, just outfits that highlight their attractiveness. For example, which make women look more feminine, evening wear or Jeans? Most would say evening wear. Now, unless you are looking at an attendee of one of the awards shows we’ve had in recent years, where women have felt compelled to dress like hookers, would you call the average evening wear revealing or objectifying? Of course not.

            That is what I mean.

          • Sheik Urbooty

            How can you draw a distinction between “anything that objectifies women” and “outfits that highlight their attractiveness”? Get your mind out of the gutter!

          • TC

            This is awesome! “…be happy they don’t have to wear head scarves.” Best intellectual back slap ever. You must be on the greenside, brother.

    • Ethan

      Like her chip goal against Harris at the end of the 2015 NWSL season and her disallowed chip goal against China? Yeah, I wouldn’t mind more of those either.

      Agreed regarding the Dunn foul and Costa Rica needing a better strategy.

      I’m not quite sure about your point regarding Morgan’s runs, but I do remember her not drifting out wide as much as she usually does.

      • F0OtballNowAndAlways

        “I’m not quite sure about your point regarding Morgan’s runs, but I do remember her not drifting out wide as much as she usually does.”

        When a poster opines that Morgan did not score or take any dangerous shots in a particular match or series of matches, some of her fans often respond by claiming the reason she didn’t put up any numbers was because she made runs during the match to draw some of her opponents to her and therefore create space for her teammates to operate in.

        Yesterday, Alex Morgan seemed interested in only one things – going after the ball.

        Which is what I have always thought a forward should be doing.

        • Ethan

          I understood your point; I just can’t recall all the runs that Morgan made. I brought up her not drifting out wide as much because her going out wide generally opens up space in the center of the field.

          I think Morgan always opens herself up for a pass (“going after the ball”) when she moves out wide. Sometimes though, that allows a player to run centrally and be in a better position to receive a pass, and as a result, that player receives the ball instead. (This pretty much describes the lead-up to Rapinoe’s penalty win against Colombia.)

        • ARED

          It’s not necessarily that Morgan doesn’t score b/c she runs for the team and creates space, but it’s to point out that even if she doesn’t score she is helping the team. At the WC this was very evident -even without scoring she was the one who was charging at and past defenders, creating fouls and chances for teammates. Of course you’d love her to finish 1-2 more herself also, but she clearly helps the team even without scoring.

          Other forwards do this too, to varying degrees, and the USA has a lot of good ones. (But this is meant by those who say that Wambach needed to be dropped -b/c she was not doing this, and in fact was a net-loss when it came to covering ground, creating space, etc. Not acceptable when you have a full stable of talented, and fast, forwards).

  • AlexH

    So, I had to turn off the game midway through the second half. How did the 3-5-2 work out? I’m a huge fan of that system and was wondering how it looked and who played where.

    • guest

      It was Kling, Broon, Hinkle; Pugh, Brian, Horan, Heath, Lloyd; Press, Morgan.

      • Steglitz49

        You could just have typed the starting X (+ Solo) of Rio — except I see Christen Annemarie as a supersub.

  • sweetjazz3

    The important thing for fans of US soccer is that we rush to the message boards to criticize the team 15 seconds into the match against Mexico for getting off to a slower start than in their first game. We never want to miss an opportunity to be negative!

    • ARED

      Well played, jazz.

    • TC

      I love it! So glad sweetjazz3 said it.

      Meanwhile, true fans with high sports IQ are busy studying the opponents of US Soccer in lieu of participating digital, barlike fights about what player’s better than the other. Yes, individuals inspire. But teams execute the legendary conquest.

      And players often shrug off praise after dominant wins anyway, preferring to point to the big picture and their ever-present quest for the “perfect game.”

      “Every game, we have everything to prove,” Rapinoe explained. “One thing that I love playing for this club, it’s not like we play our best game every game. But the style that we have and the mentality and the philosophy is always going toward the goal of playing the perfect game. We never do.

      “But it’s just having that drive and mentality and not being satisfied with what we have, even if it’s been incredibly successful.”

      – Megan Rapinoe

      Anyone notice there’s no “I” in this quote? When will people get their heads around the concept of TEAM sport?

      The whole is greater than the sum of its parts. – Aristotle

      • mockmook

        So, I think what you’re saying is that Rapinoe agrees there are things to criticize in every game.

        • TC

          Mockmook, it’s okay. I needed a hug after the last game, too. A wave of frustration and disgust came over our household. Even our pets were frustrated. Alas, we did some evening yoga and all was right in the world.

    • HOFCToDi

      Perspective.

      During the 2012 CONCACAF Women’s Olympic Qualifying Tournament, the USWNT beat Costa Rica 3 – 0.

  • AlexH

    So the attendance was poorer than a lot of recent matches and it got me wondering about who actually is putting on this tournament and who makes the money if the attendance is good or if the games are televised. There is no reason why the meaningless friendly in SD should have gotten 24K while an official match got no where near 10K.

    • mockmook

      Apparently you have never visited SD — I’d go there to watch “turf” being installed…

  • AlexH
    • #1Fan

      WoSo or Pugh ? or are we already at the point where Pugh is now WoSo 🙂

      • AlexH

        Well they are plugging their player of course. But all publicity is good publicity.