USWNT fails to make Olympic semifinals for first time ever

The Equalizer Staff August 12, 2016 833
The USWNT is out of a major tournament at the quarterfinal stage for the first time ever. (Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports)

The USWNT is out of a major tournament at the quarterfinal stage for the first time ever. (Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports)

The United States women’s national team suffered its earliest-ever exit from a major tournament on Friday, losing to Sweden in the quarterfinals in a penalty kick shootout.

The two teams ended 1-1 after regulation and through extra time, forcing a shootout. There, U.S. goalkeeper Hope Solo and Sweden goalkeeper Hedvig Lindahl made a save each, and Christen Press missed the United States’ fifth and final shot as Sweden prevailed 4-3.

Stina Blackstenius came off the bench in the 18th minute and scored on a clinical counterattack to give Sweden the lead in the 61st minute, beating Solo at the far post.

Alex Morgan equalized for the Americans in the 77th minute with a close-range effort after a defensive error from Sweden, forcing extra time. There, the U.S. and Sweden each had goals called back in the final minutes, one by Carli Lloyd and one by Lotta Schelin.

Morgan led off the shootout and had her PK saved by Lindahl. Solo saved Linda Sembrant’s effort on Sweden’s third PK.

The Americans entered these Olympic Games as the three-time defending gold medalists and reigning World Cup champions. They had never finished worse than second at an Olympics since the Games welcomed women’s soccer in 1996, winning the gold medal four times and settling for silver in 2000. The U.S. has finished third or better at all seven World Cups, winning three of them.

Friday was the first time an Olympic women’s soccer match ever went to penalty kicks.

  • guest

    Megan Rapinoe’s comeback is a success:

    1) Corner kick straight out of bound – Checked
    2) Running around at Wambach speed despite being a substitute – Checked
    3) Kicking the ball to the other team – Checked
    4) Shot on goal missed so bad that the goal is not even on the same screen – Checked
    5) Wasted not one but two substitutions for her in 30 minutes – Checked

    Best coaching job ever!!!!

    • Terry Lash

      Ellis mishandled the Rapinoe situation completely. She never should have gone to Brazil.

      • Donald Trump

        Rapinoe handles the Rapinoe situation, just like Wambach handled the Wambach situation. This immutable law is now set in stone.

      • guest

        ellis should lose her job over her inclusion of megan rapinoe on the olympic roster. and the sports media should call ellis out over this.disgrace.

        • guest

          and the sports media should call out the uswnt for the neverending roster and allocation corruption. they should treat equally the uswnt and the usmnt. enough with the softball questions and opinions.

    • MB

      Possibly worst, keep Heath as a left back. Should have sub Kreiger and it might have stabilized things a bit.This team lacked imagination. Allie Long brought nothing and was very inacurate in her distribution. Might have been the worst that I have seen of KO (I am a huge fan).

      Lloyd :at least she tried. Hated that she again took the fk but she was combative throughout the game.

      Morgan: Again, came huge for the goal but since she never took a pk at this level, why risk it.

      Press: I love Press… she will feel this one for a long time

      Bad coaching all around but this might be the best thing for the next WWC. A young team that now knows the struggle. Some many young players that will have to work harder. Might be best in the long run. If not, fun to see the underdog win

      • guest

        Sweden is 2-0-2 against the U.S. since Sundhage took over. Just show you how bad Ellis is as a tactician.

        • JL

          Actually, it’s 1-0-3. Today’s game will be recorded as a draw. Matches that go to penalties are draws, and the penalties are just a tiebreaker.

          • guest

            Today’s game can be recorded as anything the record book likes but it’s an official big fat capitalized LOST!!!

      • Oregon

        Ironically Press against Sweden of all countries.

        Yeah, didn’t notice Long.

        KO chose to go for her own shots at least three times.

    • FawcettFan14

      I agree. It was a big coaching decision by Ellis, and it failed. She should be made to answer questions about this.

      • guest

        I have never in my life seen a substitute being subbed out for non-injury related reason.

        • Don B.

          Oh, it was injury related, just not in this game.

          • Donald Trump

            Agreed, there were 2 injuries. One to Rapinoe’s leg, and another to Ellis’s head.

      • Oregon

        Such is the power/weight of the legacy…It is an entitlement.

        Dorrance, where is thy overconfidence now.

      • USMNTfan4life

        No one was complaining out Ellis when she was coach and won the WWC in ’15. Stuff happens, and I am sure things will return to normal again.

    • Do not forget in the last game Rapinoe’s bad foul in the last game lead to a Columbia goal.

    • guest

      Rapinoe sub was wasted, Dunn sub was good, though JE doesn’t seem to have a specific instruction on what to do except score a goal. Dunn was everywhere trying to score can’t fault her. Dunn should have played in the RB instead of heat.

  • Kaley

    Still not convinced that Lloyd’s goal was offside…

    • WOSO Fan

      I thought she was called for pulling down the Swedish defender. OTOH Schelin’s goal should have counted. I guess karma prevailed in the end.

      • Kaley

        I guess. The commentators seemed really confused about why Lloyd’s goal was called off.

        • JL

          The ref signaled for offside.

          • CED

            An assistant can raise their flag for a foul also. The US has nothing to complain about as Schelin’s goal was onside.

          • Cc W

            Exactly right – and that will be lost in all of this. The US were given a gift going to PKs and they didn’t capitalize.

        • One of a Kind

          The commentators just putting a positive spin on things to fool new viewers…it was a foul regardless.

      • Cc W

        Not sure what was called, but did look like a foul. And yes Schelin’s goal was onsides – should have never got to PKs. Sweden won as it should have in ET

        • Ethan

          If that had happened, I wonder how much criticism Heath would have gotten. I haven’t seen another replay of the incident yet, but I thought she should have done better there live.

          • Guest

            I don’t think she should have ever been played as a RB to begin with especially with tired legs from playing wing for 70 minutes. I thought she really looked like she needed to be subbed out.

          • Cc W

            Yeah, I’m not sure she would have – it would be Ellis for not putting in Ali – but I agree with you, it was a lapse by the back line.

            And while I appreciate Tobin as a player – she needed to be better. She’s getting a big pass from everyone – a lot of hype about her pre OG.

          • Guest

            I thought Tobin was fine in the first half but sort of disappeared in the second. She didn’t see a lot of the ball and never should have been played at RB.

    • CED

      It was a foul, not off sides. The people on tv keep saying off sides b/c they seem to ignore the fact an AR can raise the flag for a foul that they have a better view of than the ref.

  • SEM

    I don’t know what Pia told her squad after the Brazil game because Sweden was practically a new team. I think the US was over confident and was in panic mode when the Swedes scored first. Sweden’s defense played very well and they were so focused. Its upsetting that the US lost, could’ve been avoided but congrats to Sweden, the better team won. Its a tough lesson for the US, but they will bounce back and be stronger than ever and they may even have a new coach…

    • brdn08

      They were the same team. The US doesn’t do well against cowardly bunkering. It’s been discussed ad nauseum.

      • SEM

        Sweden got their ass kicked by Brazil, they were horrible. They came out today with fire in their bellies. They believed, I still think the US was over confident and took too many careless shots.

        • I would be overconfident, too. Sweden has looked terrible for over a year. Shocked they even qualified for the Olympics, but they keep doing just enough to squeak by.

          Coming into this game, Sweden was the team I was least nervous about meeting in the Olympics because they have played so poorly since the World Cup.

        • Oregon

          Yes–Not playing truly urgently till extra time.

  • Cc W

    I’m not sure Pia out coached Jill, but the US had opportunities and did not convert. Let a team like Sweden get ahead and hang around, you’re just asking for it. Not good that Alex and CP missed, but I had a feeling CP was going too. Hope made one save – which is what she is supposed to do.

    There is a reason why no team has won the double. Manaus curse? Tired legs? No excuses! Schelin’s goal should have counted so you don’t even get to PKs. And it looked like on Carli’s goal she was called for a foul?

    It’s been a fun ride while it lasted. Congrats to Sweden – let’s see who else wants to win!

    • I’d say she out coached her. Subbing in Pinoe, and then subbing her back out. Should have kept her on the bench. Subbed Kling instead of KO and put Krieger in at the end. And PK line-ups alone… my goodness.

      • Cc W

        Pinoe did change the pace a bit – everyone pushing forward. Jill played for the win instead of playing defense. I can’t really fault her for that. Coaches coach and players play – US had chances and didn’t convert.

        • Frode

          That would make sense if Pinoe were fit and ready. She wasn’t and Ellis was worried about that after the Colombia game. Thus, Ellis was gambling and praying that Rapinoe could channel her former healthy self and pull off some magic. Fizzle. The team may have paid dearly for it.

          • Cc W

            But they didn’t lose because of Pinoe playing over HAO. They should have scored early and rolled Sweden. Jill called the hail mary and yes it fizzled

          • Don’t call the hail mary if your just gonna throw an interception!

          • Cc W

            Ahhhh but it happens all the time!

          • Believe me I know, I’m a Vikings fan for goodness sake 🙂

          • Cc W

            :o) And I a Seahawks fan – I was at the playoff game last year. I want to say everyone in MN was great – we had a wonderful yet bone chilling time! I really thought you had that last kick, but I think MN is on the rise – fantastic young defense!

          • “Next year is our year!” – hear it every year. This year, maybe? Funny, I live in Seattle now, as I think we’ve discussed before. Seahawks fans were nice enough at work on that Monday.

          • guest

            but they wasted two subs on rapinoe that could have helped the team win.

          • mockmook

            You’re ignoring some stuff:

            If the USA had brought a healthy player in for Pinoe (let’s call her Ohai for simplicity’s sake), then the following happens:

            Ohai can sub in the NZL and FRA games.
            Ohai can play the whole COL game.
            Ohai can sub in the SWE game and go the distance.

            This is a huge amount of minutes of rest that Ohai potentially could have given to the other players — and you have a healthy player who can be a big asset on offense.

            There was no reason for the “hail mary” — what the USA needed was a sound strategy for the whole tournament.

          • Cc W

            Trust me, there were several NWSL players that I wish were getting looks Ohai and Jess McDonald to name a few. But since the choice as set up was HAO vs Pinoe, I’m not sure it made a difference.

          • guest

            yes. rapinoe was included on the olympic roster for one reason. for one play. to try to duplicate the 2011 cross to abby wambach at the end of a game.

  • Cc W

    While i’m a big fan of Hope, I’m disappointed that she called Sweden cowards! She needs to apologize – I hate poor sports! Suck it up!

    • Guest

      Agreed. you win some, you lose some. PK are the worst but still give credit

      • brdn08

        Disagree you give credit to quality. Japan deserved credit in 2011, Brazil deserved credit in 2007. The headline from this game is that the US lost not that Sweden played great or even especially good football.

        • Steglitz49

          The ref almost stole the match from Sweden.

          • brdn08

            If Swede had quality they wouldn’t have played like cowards. Hope said it perfectly.

        • mockmook

          Sweden played excellent, quality football — they were a credit to the sport.

    • brdn08

      But their style of play was cowardly. Ronaldo wasn’t wrong when he said it at the Euros and Solo is correct here.

      • Cc W

        Eh, it’s a tactic. Cowardly? Seems a bit dramatic.

      • John

        It’s up to the World Champions to beat an inferior team. Why should the Swedes open up and get caned by the USWNT. They played their tactics well.

        • brdn08

          Doesn’t mean it wasn’t cowardly and doesn’t mean the US still isn’t the better team. Just means the US isn’t in the tournament anymore. You’re welcome to your opinion as I am welcome to mine.

          • BigBadBossMan

            The USA dominated possession and had like bazillions more shots no doubt about it. If you map the position of the ball throughout the match I’d estimate it was in Sweden’s half of the pitch over 80% of the time

          • Constant Weeder

            But, as many would be quick to point out if the US had won, what counts is how often the ball is in Sweden’s net.

        • mockmook

          They aren’t inferior if they play a smarter match and win.

      • One of a Kind

        Didn’t the USA score when a Swede was down injured? USA got outcoached fair and square.

    • D_Nation

      Correct. Calling them “Cowards” but falls back to dirty play like changing Gloves. Don’t know who is the real coward here.

      • Cc W

        Again – both are tactics – and I’m fine with both, but don’t call the opponent a coward for playing a tactic – and a tactic that worked.

    • guest

      That’s just typical asshole Solo. She’s classless and can’t leave this program soon enough. She’s been a stain on the program for years.

    • WOSO Fan

      Did she really? Hardly the Olympic spirit. Seems like such a dumb thing to do.

      • guest

        Is that kind of petty remark really a surprise coming from her? This is the same player who had a tantrum to the press when she got benched in 2007. It just goes to prove how classless she really is.

        • Cc W

          But now I think she may have done it on purpose – everyone will turn on her and not go after Alex and CP for missing their PKs – they come out unscathed and Hope plays the villain again. Not saying it is right – but seeing Alex’s tweet – she comes of untouched.

          • guest

            oh please shes only doing it because it always has to be about her, shes an attention seeker

          • Cc W

            Yup exactly! and maybe she’s playing right into the press’ hands – Trumps been doing it for a year.

          • Chak Khan

            you meant she took one for the team? It could be.

          • thegirlnextdior

            kinda heroic of hope. she took the attention away from her teammates missing their penalties by saying a few controversial things about the opponents after the match.

          • Cc W

            I don’t think it is heroic but I do think she is about protecting her team from outside sources, much like they have protected her with her issues. She brought most of it on herself, I do think because of her upbringing, she will do what she can to make herself the villain – she was successful at doing that.

    • Ethan

      That’s pretty standard in the men’s game when the opposing team bunkers down and plays all out defense.

      • Cc W

        Agreed, but it isn’t cowardly. Not going to defend the statement, but as I wrote here – I think she may have done this on purpose. No one is talking about the misses by Alex and CP – they are all talking about Hope.

        • Ethan

          I’ve heard that kind of reasoning for years regarding Mourinho’s comments while in charge of Chelsea. While it seems more plausible with Solo, I’m not sure at all about that reasoning.

          Morgan’s finishing has been notably better in 2016, but she still does her best when she hardly has any time to think/react (i.e. her good finish today and her finish off Dunn’s cross against Japan). Penalty kicks at the moment really look like the weakest part of Morgan’s offensive game; I hope she does better on them in the upcoming years.

          I really don’t know what to say about Press’ penalty kick. Hope she rebounds well; Chicago needs her in good form. I hope the same thing for Morgan, but Orlando’s not in as great of a position.

          • Cc W

            When NBC just talked about the game, they showed Sweden’s final penalty getting by Hope – no mention of Alex or CP. I’m sure both will be fine – I’m sure they think they have another shot at it. Some of the older players, not so much.

          • Steglitz49

            Alex yes. The other one, no.

          • FlyingSquirrel42

            I think we may be jumping the gun a little bit here. If you asked me right now who I thought would be more likely to be on the WWC19 or OG20 squad between Alex and CP, I’d say Alex, but it’s three years away. If CP tears up the field in the NWSL and starts racking up goals against top-level teams in friendlies and small tournaments, I find it hard to believe they’d still cut her just because of this missed PK.

          • mockmook

            Maybe not cut her, but she will be even more marginalized.

      • Guest

        Wilmots was heavily criticized for making similar comments though. That Belgium team and this US team are somewhat similar in that they really struggle to break down organized defenses in spite of their talent.

        • Guest

          And more power to Sweden and Wales. I think that any team who doesn’t try to play like this against the US that isn’t France or Germany is foolish.

          • Steglitz49

            Hear hear!

    • Chak Khan

      Did she? Does not the team have a PR agent? Well, if they did not; it’s time!

  • Kaley

    … How much longer does Jill Ellis’s contract last for? I feel like when we do win, its in spite of her.

    Also gutted that the next major tournament isn’t until 2019 so they have three years to stew over this.

  • D_Nation

    I’ve been a fan of the USWNT for quite a long time. Love their work ethic, attitude and far and foremost their sportsmanship. Watching many other teams ( i.e. brazil ) flopping, stalling and playing dirty made me even a bigger fan. But seeing Solo today doing that “Glove Change” did it for me! Massively dissapointed that the USWNT drops down to that level of play, that distinguished them from the others. And the Referees today. Holy Sh*t. Never seen something so pathetic. Sweden 2nd Goal was correct, even a blind can see it. Women Soccer will suffer as long as these low profile referees are present. SWEDEN WON FAIR AND SQUARE! GOOD JOB!

    • brdn08

      someone citing the US for bad sportsmanship in a game littered with intentional fouls many of which with arms out stretched and multiple takedowns by Sweden says a lot about the state of woso. height of hypocrisy.

      • WOSO Fan

        The Swedes seemed to be getting the worst of the hard fouls to me. Didn’t the USA score when a Swede was down from a hard foul?

        • brdn08

          a hard foul in and of itself isn’t bad sportsmanship, the intent is. A large sum of the Swedish fouls were intentional.

          • Steglitz49

            Which match were you watching?

  • BCAD

    As much as I am disappointed in this result, I am still 100% behind this team. I am USWNT diehard fan and have been since I watched their match against Canada 4 years ago in 2012 Olympics. I am proud of the players and all the work they put in and sacrifice for this game. I know all the other feelings I have, had, or may have will be covered by multiple people on this board in some form and then some. What’s unfortunate is the media will only focus on this loss and after a few weeks will go back to not covering this team at all.

    • Cc W

      Exactly – sometimes you come out ahead and sometimes you don’t. And I’ll take the WC win over the gold medal every day and every tourney! I fully support this team and believe the future is bright. This is the end of an era – WC players retired – Hope will retire – and even if Carli doesn’t think so, she’ll be retiring as well. Pugh, Dunn, Horan, JJ are your future. Time to get younger and develop the talent.

      • FlyingSquirrel42

        I’m not that down about the loss per se – it’s disappointing, but good players have bad games and, when you get right down to it, sports aren’t particularly fair and unexpected things happen. That’s been true of times they’ve won as well.

        I’m more concerned about how the team and U.S. Soccer will react. I do think there needs to be *some* rethinking of the approach to roster choices and strategy after this, and I’m worried that instead we’ll just hear excuses and rationalizations (“Pinoe wasn’t healthy” “We haven’t found a true replacement for Abby yet” “Hey, Sweden is a really good team!”). Or, conversely, there’ll be such a thorough housecleaning that even players like Alex and Tobin will feel pressured to step aside (or the coaching staff will be expected to cut them) even though they’re young enough that they could still contribute for another cycle.

        My hope is that they’ll accept the loss for what it was, and just resolve to experiment more over the next couple years in the friendlies and small tournaments. Don’t take a chainsaw to the roster right off the bat, but at the same time, no position should be any particular player’s to lose any more.

        • Cc W

          I think about the Canada semi last OG – US got a bit lucky – and sometimes it happens. I don’t think you blow it all up – winning a WC is way more important than the OG. I think the core of the 27-28 year olds are there for the next run, but the over 30 crowd will have to move on. You can have some core veterans and bring on the new players. The young guns will be hungry and if you keep them healthy and together, they can be good. They got experience this tourney – and that is good for the future.

          • Observed

            Time for the vets like Solo to move. Its shades of Angerer on the German side all over again: stayed far too long, with poor results.

          • Cc W

            Hope is retiring.

          • JL

            Angerer was a big reason why Germany got to the semifinal against the US in the first place.

          • JL

            The US has had a lot of luck in their history, and sometimes when they weren’t so lucky (95 semifinal, 00 final). Perhaps it was just not in the cards for the luck to fall their way today. That’s sports for you.

            Having said that, this was a horrendous management job by Ellis. Picking unfit players, poor tactics and lineup choices, and so on. Sweden put out a gameplan that worked, and they get to move on.

      • #1Fan

        JJ ? be careful there. She is by no means a lock to me.

        • Cc W

          Really – why not? She’s a solid CB who can contribute on set pieces.

          • #1Fan

            not good in possession, not a great reader of the game. Sweden killed then with ONE direct pass.

          • #1Fan

            you don’t measure CBs on how they do on set pieces. Its about how they defend.

          • mockmook

            You defend on set pieces.

          • #1Fan

            obviously, his implications was scoring from them. Why the nitpicking?

  • NYRick

    When I saw it was Press who was stepping up to take that 5th shot, to be honest, I had to look away. Feel bad for her, but it’s gotten where you just expect her to fail in the biggest of moments. It’s a shame really.

    • Cc W

      Me too – I walked out of the room – I knew she was going to miss and that’s too bad,

      • Observed

        When I saw it was Press to take the PK, I said, “Oh Geeze!” It was as if scripted in a movie. She freakin blew it, like Carli in WC 2011. About the same age as Carli then, so maybe some hope after all.

        • x

          Lloyd had an easier recovery, IMO, for three reasons:
          1) With Boxx and Heath missing before and after, they almost certainly would’ve lost even if she’d made the PK;
          2) She was already the hero from the 2008 Olympic final;
          3) She got to turn around and get to work on a major tournament in the very next year.

      • Guest

        I did too!!!!!!

    • brdn08

      Actually I was rooting for her. It was her chance to do something great. So she missed, she’ll wake p tomorrow and start anew. I’m not the biggest Press fan but most of it isn’t her fault, she just never fit into Jill’s vision of this team.

    • I literally said out loud. No, not Press!. And I love Press. But Jill doesn’t play her, ruins her confidence, and NOW she wants her to take the deciding PK in a knockout stage game? What kind of terrible coaching is that? She was never going to make that PK.

      • MB

        Actually, if Press had any Lloyd self confidence, it would have been her chance. I thought and HOPE that she would score.Why can this girl make it big! I really hoped she would have made a difference this time. And please Reality, dont comment on how X & Y are at fault. She is a consummed professional and was rooting for her more than the team.

      • NYRick

        Actually when you think about it, it was the coach finally showing confidence in her. It was a big moment and it would have erased a lot of doubt about her even if the shootout progressed and they still lost. As it stands, let’s face it, she will be remembered as the major goat in it. There is no hiding on the deciding shot in a PK shootout.

        I do feel bad as a fan of hers. This is a tough one. Hopefully she can move on and not take it with her too long, but from a sports perspective, not life’s perspective, what happened to her today she will most likely take to her grave.

        The great Herb Brooks line to the US Miracle hockey team AFTER they beat Russia in the semis (most people don’t realize that was a semi, not a final), and then two days later had to play Finland for the gold medal. After two periods they were losing. In between the 2nd and final period, Brooks screamed at his team in the lockerroom according to first hand accounts with the famous line, “If you lose this game today after beating Russia, you will take it to your EFFIN graves. TO YOUR EFFIN GRAVES!!” Now that was a coach.

    • Chak Khan

      I knew it before either Press and Morgan even stepped up to the PK spot. Neither looked confidence. Morgan’s kick was a so weak it didn’t have any power behind it. Not good. I am wondering if any of the team members besides Carli even practiced PK kick because they were too confident they would not let their opponents take them there.

  • guest

    Gotta love that the worst ever finish for the US comes in Solo’s last major tournament. Can’t kick her out of the door soon enough. What a completely classless individual, calling Sweden cowards and being an all around deplorable person. Glad Brazil booed her off the field, too bad the American’s won’t have it in them to do the same.

    • John

      She was, for a while, the best keeper in the world. Not sure she was ever as good as she thought she was (i.e. the best ever).

      • JL

        When Solo was in her prime, she was the best ever. That was some time ago, and now that her biggest reason for staying is no longer valid, time to kick her to the curb.

        • John

          I’d have Silke Rottenberg ahead of her.Just.

          • Steglitz49

            Isn’t she a QB who rides Harleys?

  • Rami

    Heads up! This one stings, but on to the next one! Go USWNT!

    /also please fire Jill Ellis, thanks.

    • Steglitz49

      3 years to go

    • Chak Khan

      US fans are brutal. One fail and you’re fired! Look at Germany head coach is still respected!

      • mockmook

        JE has been failing upward for over a year, she just changed trajectory.

  • snishy

    Wow. I never thought this was going to be an easy game (figured it would be low scoring), but I certainly didn’t expect this. Nevertheless, Sweden deserved to advance fair and square after that botched offside call on Schelin. It shouldn’t have even gone to penalty kicks if the ref didn’t get that wrong; felt like a good dose of karma to me. As for the called off Lloyd goal, that felt fair to me. She did pull down the Swedish defender to get a better angle.
    We were just poor most of the game, especially on finishing. I think it’s easy to put the blame on Press and Alex during the penalties (though Press is sure to have a rougher time with that), but there were embarrassing moments/decisions all around: such as all the times Lloyd took the free kicks instead of allowing Heath to take them. Putting Pinoe into the game before other fitter healthier players (and then taking her out), which also pushed Heath into a more defensive position and we all know defense is not her forte. Our defense looked shaky on the counter with a lot of last ditch tackles (thankfully, most of them weren’t fouls). Not sure what to make of Solo in this match, but she did have that impressive penalty stop. A lot of things to think about with this game, but most of the issues I saw came from weird coaching decisions (though not all of them). Isn’t this the worst exit for the US in the Olympics? Yikes. At the end of the day, we didn’t deserve to advance and the game shouldn’t have even gone to penalties, a crushing but fair result.

    • SEM

      I agree with you. While disappointing, this loss will prove to be valuable for the team. I felt like the US didn’t have a strong showing in this tournament. Its no individuals fault that they lost, it was the teams. You win as a team and you lose as a team. The coaching should’ve been better, it’ll be interesting to see what happens next. If the rumors are true that many US players are planning to play abroad next season, then I believe that will benefit them immensely.

  • NYRick

    Oldest rule in sports on display today. When a superior team lets an inferior opponent stick around for awhile and gain belief, the result is always inevitable. This time anyway, the US lost out on will. Kind of a rarity, but it happened.

    • Cc W

      Very true – the US had them on the ropes in the first 15 minutes and didn’t score. Gave SWE lots of confidence

    • Ando91881

      Press should have entered the game around the 75th minute, not the 96th minute. Some of the starters were probably gassed.

      • brdn08

        I agree the Pinoe sub was wrong for so many reasons

    • Peter

      Regarding: “the US lost out on will”
      Please stop this nonsense of saying that a team won because its players wanted it more than the other team’s players.

      • NYRick

        You don’t believe that in sports? On the elite level, that is a very real thing. I mean for crying out loud, this very US’s program main calling card over the years has been their will. They never give up etc. and always find a way. Sometimes you don’t. Sometimes the other team has the answers
and has a little more heart.

        • Kevin

          That’s a very real cliche, but that’s all it’s ever been.

          I think you’re buying into too much of the lazy and uninsightful BS cliches spewed forth from the announcers and the media.

        • Peter

          NYRickm you respond by saying that “this very US’s program main calling card over the years has been their will”. Then the team loses today and it’s supposed to be because they didn’t want to win enough. Where did their vaunted will to win go? To me, saying that a team won because its players wanted it more, is more often than not a simple tautology (a statement that is true by definition) – because the inference to the effect of them wanting it more is made from the win, that is after the result is known. Did you see the faces of the US players after the end of the penalty shooting? They did not look like players that did not mind losing. For the US players, wasn’t a good bit of money riding on winning this tournament? (And most of them are not rich.)

      • Steglitz49

        The refereeing!? The refereeing?!! Had John McEnroe been an assistant for Sweden we know what would had echoed around the stadium

  • Ando91881

    Probably bad news for the NWSL attendance wise? Outside of Portland and Seattle that is, where Woso is kind of a serious deal. But the momentum from 2015 now comes to a halt and there is no bump for teams like Chicago Red Stars or some others. Three more years before a big tournament and mainstream media coverage. Bad news for the NWSL?

    • John

      You can’t base a sustainable league on the success of a National Team. To think that you can is folly. Not aiming this at you, but the general view that the USWNT has to win all tournaments otherwise the league will fold.

      • Ando91881

        They don’t have to win all of their tournaments. I’m just asking if it really slows down momentum. No bump in attendance.

      • brdn08

        Exactly, at some point the league has to stand on its own merits maybe without the National team having a tour this fall, the league can do just that.

      • x

        It would help if they were at least playing a full schedule. More chances for new people/casual fans to stumble on a game and hear the NWSL exists.

    • Cc W

      Actually with all the other internationals who are in the OG as well, I’m not sure you’ll see a drop off. Alex is still Alex to millions of young kids,

      • Steglitz49

        Luckily for her Blackstenius is Swedish.

        • Cc W

          Yes and so many other fantastic players!

          I wonder if Carli goes for the money now and goes to play for PSG or Lyon?

          • Steglitz49

            Why would they sign her? PSG let Lisa Dahlkvist go and Seger and Asllani.

        • Ethan

          Well, her penalty wasn’t, but her goal was a textbook example of how strikers should react to defensive mistakes.

    • Bruce

      Terrible, horrible news – particularly for teams like CRS that do virtually no marketing and have pegged fan-base growth to NT success.

      LOWER attendance next season is a real possibility. I can’t see how CRS can afford to stay at Toyota Park. It’s even fair to ask if they will survive as a franchise until the next WC cycle.

      • John

        You have to ask then, is a pro league sustainable?

        • Bruce

          Depends on the markets and teams. Portland does all the right things in marketing, plays in an optimally placed stadium and has the co-marketing support of a MLS sibling. They do great.

          Lots of other franchises seem content to just field a team an wish for the best.

        • Steglitz49

          If wealthy men’s clubs subsidize the ladies any league can carry on. Man Utd closed their women team down 10 years ago. How much are they spending on Zlatan and Pogba?

          • John

            How much money do the men generate?

          • Bruce

            Not enough in the US. But they can help greatly in creating awareness and co-marketing.

      • Ando91881

        They cannot play at Northwestern University. They cannot play at Benedictine University. They have no other options other than to move to a different city. St. Louis Red Stars?

        • Bruce

          Why is Benedictine out? DePaul?

          • Ando91881

            The field is completely unprofessional. The experience feels more like going to a high school game, and that itself limits the audience.

          • Bruce

            I’ve been to plenty of games there and agree. But beggars can’t be choosers.

        • Bruce

          The best thing that could happen to the franchise would be that Arnim Whisler sell his controlling interest to the group that own the Fire.

          • Ando91881

            What do you think the odds are of that happening?

          • Bruce

            Very small.

            The cost structure of the league makes it very hard to loose a lot of money. You can run a skeleton staff (mainly interns), and the combination of allocation dollars, subsidies and a pitifully small salary cap mean that you can totally mail it in and only loose a hundred grand or two per season.

            I doubt that the NWSL has any minimum performance requirements (marketing, attendance, etc.) built in to ownership agreements that could compel an owner to sell. It’s really needed to avoid having do-nothing owners sit on franchises in the markets of greatest potential.

          • Ando91881

            I just received the “newsletter” by email and read that the September 6th game (televised on Fox Sports 1) is giving away 10-15 free tickets to each youth group. So, right there they are admitting that the official attendance that weekday evening is going to be fake and filled with free tickets given away. Kind of embarrassing that they admit in the newsletter that each youth group gets 10-15 free tickets. When they release the attendance for that game and say that it was 2,700 we know that in reality only 1,700 were paid tickets.

          • Bruce

            Yeah, I got that too. I’ve worked with them this year to buy group tickets. It’s just not a professional sales organization.

    • Steglitz49

      Curtains for Chicago I suspect.

      • Ando91881

        Sad day for NWSL.

        • dw

          Picture of future NWSL crowd at a CRS game.

  • Cc W

    But you know, when i’m sitting here seeing what Hope said I’m wondering if she said all of this to draw attention to her and take the pressure off of Alex and Christen, Right now, no one is talking about their misses – they are talking about her. Say what you want about Hope but she isn’t dumb. This might be the ultimate taking one for the team?

    • That is the one thing I am grateful for right now. Hope taking on the media, right or wrong, and people will move right along about Alex and Christen.

      • Cc W

        I believe she might be doing this – she’s going to retire and doesn’t care. I really wouldn’t put it past her. And really by saying her team couldn’t score because of Sweden again takes the focus on their lack of success and makes her the bad guy.

      • mockmook

        But, it’s pure conjecture.

    • x

      Hmm, didn’t she kind of do that an Olympics or two ago by blasting Chastain while the media was focused on her terrible, no-good backline?

      • Cc W

        Yup – she took all the focus away from them and put it on herself. And you notice hours later, no one is talking about Alex and CP missing their PKs. I firmly believe that Hope knows the league needs those 2 players to bring people in and Hope is almost done, she doesn’t care.

  • MB

    Maybe have someone else but Abby or Lloyd take a PK would have helped for a ll those friendlies.

  • NYRick

    Question: why not sub in Krieger in the final minute of the second OT? They had one sub left (4 are allowed for OT). I remember it was Krieger who took the final winning kick against Brazil in WC11 shootout. Maybe some good karma there having her ready.

    • MB

      And with Heath making defensive mistake, it would have calmed the game down

      • Yep. Heath playing at RB for basically 40 minutes is a joke and terrible coaching.

        • NYRick

          It’s not just a defensive liability, it more importantly takes your best offensive player out of the central flow of attack and she has to really worry about defending a scoring chance as well. Stupid. Done to accommodate Pinoe. Press should have come on before Pinoe.

          • Totally agree with all of this. I am still stunned that Pinoe even saw the field at all today, let alone before extra time. At least save her for extra time and let her take a PK.

          • Frode

            I was stunned as well, and furious. Maybe if the US was up by 2 – 3 goals, you put Rapinoe in to rest a player for the semis, but down a goal? What did Ellis thinks she was going to do? Nostalgia doesn’t score goals.

          • Truly was a nostalgic move completely. And Pinoe proved all the doubters right. Looked slow and a step behind.

          • David K Anderson

            Exactly. Heath was the sole creative spark in the first half, and the biggest reason we had so many opportunities (albeit wasted ones). And yeah…all to let an injured, 20-minutes-fit player come on. I begin to see the argument of those who assert Ellis isn’t really in charge…or at least not fully.

        • CED

          It’s not if you’re pushing for a win to put Heath at pseudo RB They were essentially playing with 3 in the back which is a situation they practiced in some friendlies this year to simulate a situation of needing a goal late in game.

          • But they weren’t playing at 3 in the back, because Heath defended the whole time and was dead tired. Added nothing to the attack at all after she as moved.

          • It was simulated and laughed at already. Shouldn’t have happened again.

          • kernel_thai

            The problem with Heath isnt handling the wing role when they went 3-5-2, it’s that she wants to dibble out of trouble near her own goal which is a disaster waiting to happen.

    • Cc W

      Pushing for the win I expect

    • FlyingSquirrel42

      As a Krieger fan myself (I know, I know, she went to a wedding…) I have to question what really came of benching her for O’Hara in the end. I’m not saying that’s why they lost, but it certainly wasn’t why they won, given that, well, they didn’t win. Regardless, it’s not like she’s just completely useless at helping create offense, and O’Hara was already out of the game, so yeah, I’m not sure why they left her on the bench either.

      Not sure what to expect for her career after this. Even if she doesn’t get cut, if I were in her shoes I’d probably ask Ellis (or Ellis’s replacement, depending on what happens now) for a frank conversation over whether playing her way back to the starting lineup is even a possibility, and if the answer is no, consider retiring from international play. And I suspect she might like to go back to Europe for at least part of a season at some point if it meant a shot at playing in the Champion’s League.

    • Steglitz49

      Once Horan came on, there were no subs left.

      • Nicole C.

        Yup. They ran out of subs after wasting two on Rapinoe.

        • Steglitz49

          Bizarre. Do a WR.

        • kernel_thai

          If u forget Rapinoe u can bring Press on for about 80, get Pugh off and still have a sub to get Krieger on at the end.

    • x

      I don’t agree at all about subbing a player in at the very end to take a PK. They need some minutes to calibrate themselves and get flowing. (Italy just got burned on that in Euros)
      Of course I would’ve put Krieger in and moved Heath back up at the beginning of OT, so that should’ve been plenty of time to acclimate and prep for a PK.

  • I’m gonna play Steg for a bit… How much does the USWNT work on penalty kicks? Clearly not enough. And I’m not just talkig about Alex and Press missing. Even in the NWSL, hardly any of the NTers look confident or make penalties. It’s an issue.

    • NYRick

      Coming into a WC or an OG, any top team should be practicing them a lot. For certain, if it wasn’t Sweden, then there was a good possibility that Germany, France, Brazil, Canada, Australia, China are all quite capable of getting any match with you to kicks. The first 3 teams for sure.

      In the second OT, I started to think of my “five” and the order they would take them. I had Carli going first. You want to jump out to a lead and she has the most experience taking PKs. I had Alex as my 5th shooter, Press as my second shooter, Heath as my third and Brian as my 4th. From there, I would have bought on Krieger late in OT just to have her available or would have been good with Horan. If it gets that far, it’s all luck at that point anyway.

      • CED

        Every team works on it, the fact is some people are not just good at it. Smart coaches work on it after they do a practice heavy on fitness. The best time to work on it is when the plays are dead tired from a really hard practice to simulate the fatigue of 120 minute game somewhat. It’s harder to make Pk’s with heavy legs

      • Definitely started to think of my 5 as well. Carli has to go first. It sets the tone. I wouldn’t have had Press take one, as I already stated, and probably not Alex either. I would have went Horan #2, Brian #3, Probably Dunn at 4 – she is high on confidence right now at least. And subbed in Krieger for 5th.

        • NYRick

          Yeah, I like your 5 too. Who knows, when it gets to kicks it’s such a crap shoot anyway. I was really hoping we put them away in one of the OTs. But Lotta’s non goal was a goal, so they were extremely lucky on that as well.

          But Carli had to go first. This also gets back to a conversation we’ve had on here many times. Why does Carli take all the PKs? Even in tomato can matches. That’s why you have Alex take some. Press take some. Heath take some etc. One thing I do see in these shootouts though, the fear on player’s faces. You can just tell who is scared up there.

    • Steglitz49

      How much does the US hassle the ref team? In this case they did not even need to. The ref team’s incompetence almost stole the match from Sweden.

      FIFA must take action now. These refs need to see the opticians urgently, preferably tonight.

    • x

      Sketchy PK takers don’t struggle with getting the ball from Point A to Point B, though, they struggle with handling the pressure associated with shoot-or-die PSOs. You can practice and make the PK as automatic as possible but you can’t replicate the pressure.

  • BGH123

    There needs to be a cultural shift. The USWNT needs to create a culture where the best players go, and the best players play, no matter what anyone did a year ago. We did not lost because of Pinoe, but it toxic when you show up to a tournament with a few players included because of politics. What is sad is that Ellis actually believed Pinoe would win it for them despite not player for 7 months

  • Calci0

    Again this game played out like the Algarve Cup US vs Sweden game. Lots of chances by the US, not enough finishing.

    • Steglitz49

      Even with the help of the ref team as a 12th player they could not hack it.

  • Cc W

    WoSo is very competitive – right now GER- CHN is scoreless – anything can happen

    • Cc W

      China misses a PK in the 84th minute GER 1-0

      • Holy! I figured I better pretend to work a bit today and not watch this one. Wow, China. How bad would that have been if Germ conceded up a man. What as the penalty for?

        • MurderOnZidanesFloor

          Maier stuck out and arm and blocked the China player who had just knocked the ball past her. It was a really dumb foul to give away tbh.

        • Steglitz49

          Holding/obstruction. By Leonie Maier.

      • Steglitz49

        Hit the post but bounced out. Could just as well have bounced in.

        • Cc W

          Very true, but GER gets through barely. Pretty much every team now believes they can win it all! Brazil and France better watch out the underdogs are ready to bite

          • Steglitz49

            The QFs should be close. Games like last year’s WC-15 final should be rare occurrences.

      • Ashley C

        Germany has played some awful football but I would not be surprised if they reach the podium. Not sure what medal yet but it could happen. As we know…anything can happen at the Olympics in a KO game.

    • Terry Lash

      Are you watching a livestream? URL?

      • Cc W

        Sorry! I didn’t see your post!

      • Peter

        Now the game is over. But nevertheless, one way to watch:
        http://www.usagoals.co/football.html

        You will have to put up with some pop-up adds at the beginning. Ignore the claim: You need to create and account to watch. (Wrong). Also ignore: Some software on your computer you need to watch the game is outdated, update by clicking here. (Also wrong.) Both are attempts to get some malware on your computer.

  • luke

    Alex Morgan and Christen Press – two top world’s strikers missed two crucial penalties!

    • brdn08

      If Ronaldo can miss a penalty anyone can miss a penalty.

      • John

        Messi missed a crucial penalty in the Copa America final as well, Anyone can miss a penalty. Pele and Maradona missed plenty in their times.

      • luke

        Which Ronaldo?

        • brdn08

          Cristiano

          • luke

            Has Ronaldinho ever missed one in big tournament for NT?

          • brdn08

            I don’t know but I believe Messi and Cristiano are a cut above Ronaldinho.

          • Guest

            Maybe in terms of goal totals but other than that I think Ronaldinho is every bit the player those two are. He could have had some more great years if he just focused on training and didn’t let partying derail him.

          • luke

            Blasphemous, unthinkable, asinine.
            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BpAbhmGfMQ4

    • Don B.

      Strikers are historically the worst at penalties. They are strikers because they have an innate ability to spontaneously put the ball in the net in the run of play. They are not place kickers. There’s a huge difference.

      • JL

        Defenders are usually better at penalties.

    • MurderOnZidanesFloor

      Earlier in the year Ada Hegerberg, another of the top strikers in the world, was the only Lyon player to miss a penalty in the Champions League final shoutout.

    • Guest

      Would not say that they are the two best but definitely on the shortlist at least. Mine would be Morgan, Press, DeVanna, Kerr, Hegerberg, Bachmann, Marta, Christiane, Sinclair, Vero

      • Guest

        Bachmann and Vero are not strikers.

        • Guest

          Fine, then ‘attackers’

          • Guest

            It’s a pretty big difference. Not all players are comfortable spear heading an attack. You would play Pugh as a 9 would you?

          • Guest

            Yes I would

  • luke

    Whole game in HD quality – you may need polish IP though (use Hola):

    http://tinyurl.com/horrk9f

  • Gary Diver

    Poor Christen Press – this is not what she needed out of this tournament.

    • luke

      She missed her penalty, because she doesn’t have Alex Morgan killer instinct, oh wait…. 😉

      • Gary Diver

        Somebody else pointed out that strikers tend to be poor at PKs. So part of this outcome is on Ellis. Still Press fans were hoping she would shine during this Olympics. Press and Morgan will not get equal treatment, but life is not fair.

        • CED

          Poor is relative..people give Messi a hard time on PK’s but over her his career he has made just under 80% of Pk’s. But, people will remember the miss in Copa America and a few other ones lately

          • guest

            I mean… Messi is my favorite player and I thought Martino has done a terrible job managing some of those lost finals but Messi’s PK miss was atrocious. The pressure clearly got to him.

        • kernel_thai

          Press had a moment right near the end where she got a chance to tee it up and sent it into the seats. If she had slotted that shot they not only avoid PKs but it banishes a lot of demons.

      • Ashley C

        I rewatched the penalties. Morgan’s seemed very poor. Honestly there was just not much power behind it. Felt telegraphed.

  • Hans Castorp

    We got an injury report on Pugh yet? She’s got another tournament coming up…

  • anon

    Ding Dong the Witch is Dead… says every other team

    • Peter

      Great analysis!

  • Gary Diver

    Ugly Soccer

    I have heard it a thousand times. Results are the only thing that counts. If so, welcome to the world of ugly soccer. Park the bus and hope to score one goal on a counter-attack. We saw that in the recent Portland victory over Seattle.

    Even the CBC British commentator called Sweden’s play negative soccer. Is this the future? If so, I may need to change sports interest.

    • luke

      Polish commentator said Sweden didn’t deserve SF as well.

      • Steglitz49

        Poland and Sweden was one country for a few years but it broke apart. Sweden went on to be a big nation for about a 100 years and has remained independent. Poland did not.

        More relevant sweden prevented Poland from qualifying for WC-15 and again for Euro-17.

    • Steglitz49

      Dahlqvist hit a dream of a pass to Blackstenius who finished the job.

      Schelin’s goal in extra time was good but it should not have been necessary because a foul started the move that gave the US the equalizer.

      The ref team almost stole the match from Sweden.

    • Ashley C

      What Sweden did is nothing new. Tactically it happens all the time in world football. Mourinho, Conte, etc. Yes it can be ugly and negative but it can work and if each player knows the game plan/role, it can work out tactically.

      • Guest

        Conte and Mourinho play very different systems. Conte’s teams are always pressing while Mourinho’s teams like to sit in. Atleti beat Barcelona and Bayern in separate two legged champions league fixtures. Portugal won the Euros sitting back as well. Greece has done well in the Euros with similar tactics. It’s worked even against good teams for years.

        • Ashley C

          They play different systems to a certain extent – but Mourinho and Conte defend very similar. Many people called Conte’s football boring at the Euros but it works. Much like when Mourinho parks the bus. Both are often criticized for playing negative football.

          I don’t think Sweden are as confident on the counter in the way Atleti take chances on the counter – but the outcome was the same.

          • Guest

            I didn’t think Italy were very boring at all at the Euros. They may not have had the talent to hold onto the ball like some of the teams they played but they pushed numbers forward and attacked when they had the chance. They defended like a team with many behind the ball but were constantly pressuring and denying their opponents any penetration. I thought they were fascinating to watched and operated as a team. Mourinho’s teams are all similar to one another. He has a good striker and a main creative player carry the offensive load by exploiting teams on the counter. I’ve seen him do some experimenting but when things get tough he always parks the bus and plays for counter-attacking chances.

  • anon

    Who is the idiot that thought Press should take a penalty kick?

    • John

      Press. Penalty takers usually volunteer.

      • I would hope they weren’t just up there raising their hands in a major tournament knockout game. That’s even more terrible coaching if that is the case.

      • guest

        i highly doubt press volunteered.

    • Guest

      Should have been one of Johnston or Heath

      • Alexis

        I still haven’t finished watching the game but I am absolutely shocked that neither of those two took one. Esp. Heath.

      • JL

        Johnston, yes. She showed as a rookie that she can step up under pressure and score a PK. Heath, no.

        • Guest

          I would have taken an exhausted Heath in that situation 10000000% over Press

          • x

            Sure, but with 10 field players and a 5-woman PK lineup, you don’t have to take either. Dunn, JJ, even Brunn were all available.

    • dw

      Who was the bigger idiot that thought she should go 5th?

  • Thus continues on the year of the underdog in soccer. Honestly, whoever wins the Australia v Brazil game really needs to win the Gold.

    • John

      I really hope it is Brazil. The genius of Marta deserves at least one major tournament win.

      • Guest

        And it would be awesome to see what happens to WOSO in Brazil if BRA wins. Sold out stadiums and Neymar fans converting to Marta lovers? The response already is awesome.

        • Guest

          Their fandom is disgustingly fickle and the womens side isn’t taken seriously anyway. I fear for them if they lose.

    • Ashley C

      I’d prefer Brazil or Canada to take it. Canada winning would help push WoSo in North America. Obviously not to the extent the USWNT has in the past but I think it would help.

      • As an American, I can’t cope with Canada winning. (kind of joking, kind of not) – Love the Aussies and honestly, just really want Marta to win something. She deserves.it.

        • anonymous

          same. I would be thrilled to see any team on the podium except Canada. Although, Solo is giving Canada a run for their money with sore loser remarks to the media.

  • Gary Diver

    Who decided who takes the penalties?

    • CED

      The coach and they usually have most, if not all of the 5 selected ahead of time. If they see someone is dead tired or cramping they change. If someone declines they change. They should know who are the best Pk takers b/c it is practiced

  • David K Anderson

    Absolute howler of a game by Ellis. Move the one player generating any creativity in the offense to RB for half the regular 90 and beyond? Completely waste a sub on an injured player? Odd substitution pattern? Check, check, check.

    Sermanni was sacked for failing on a far less lofty stage…I’m just sayin’.

    • John

      Ellis has won the Big Won 12 months ago. She will not be sacked before the World Cup in 2019

      • David K Anderson

        Oh, I have no doubt you’re correct…and we’ll continue to see more dubious decisions from her, too. And more political domination by the Old Guard…

      • Guest

        She literally was responsible for playing well 1 game in the world cup (Germany), and that is all. Other than that they looked like garbage. The Japan game, the set piece coach is responsible for since that was how they won. And I can barely even say she was responsible for them playing well that one WC game since it was other factors that influenced it more.

        • John

          In Simpsons parlance…”She pulled a Homer.”….but what a Homer.

          • Guest

            Reece Rampone at the helm probably could have won the USWNT the world cup

          • John

            But Heinrichs, Ryan and Sundhage could not.

          • Guest

            With the talent available in 2015 I bet they could have. I mean, even Reece Rampone would have known to have Brunn on the field over RVH in 2011.

          • John

            Heinrichs had the World Champions playing at home and couldn’t win it (with more talent than in 2015). Ryan may have won in 2007 but for making the worst call in the history of soccer by dropping Solo.

          • Guest

            I am referring to last year.

          • #1Fan

            is it the worst call? Or was it a call on Culture over talent? he made gutsy call and I for one totally respect him for it. I know from the inside that he considered Solo an cancer that no matter how talented, was a wild card that would hurt the team .

          • x

            He should’ve cut her or benched her after North Korea if he thought she was so awful. As it is he screwed over Scurry- she deserved SO much better than to have her last meaningful international game be an attempt to shake off 3 months’ rust during a major beatdown by Brazil.

          • JL

            Scurry’s last game before the Brazil semifinal was a friendly against New Zealand in August. She came in for Solo at halftime. So it was about 6 weeks, not 3 months.

          • #1Fan

            like everything..it is so easy from your armchair with hindsight

          • Donald Trump

            Haha.. yep.

        • mockmook

          And, in this OG, the only involuntary change made to the roster was the demotion of HAO.

      • JL

        I don’t know. Does winning the WC outweigh the worst ever finish at a major tournament?

        • John

          When you haven’t won the WC since 1999? Yes.

    • mockmook

      Sermanni didn’t “fail”, he was experimenting in a “meaningless” tournament.

      • Donald Trump

        Sermanni was a victim of a coup by senior players, who wanted to install a puppet who would play them in WWC 15, and they succeeded.

  • Guest

    Teh curse of Manaus?
    THe curse of Sweden?
    The curse of the World Cup?
    The curse of the Jill Ellis LoLzTrain?

    • kevin

      the uswnt never made it out of the amazon searching for the city of gold.

  • Guest

    Another USWNT game and more Carli Lloyd free kicks not on goal

    • David K Anderson

      And run-of-play shots, too. Carli picked a bad time to be the exact opposite of clutch.

  • Andrew

    Congrats to Schelin and Co. for keeping their hearts in it.

    • MurderOnZidanesFloor

      Schelin is a class act. I felt more confident that she’d score her penalty than anyone else.

      • Steglitz49

        She should have complained when her goal was disallowed.

  • Guest

    Will Press make it to 2019?

    • saghj

      LOL Pinoe wlil too. What a dark mark on the end of her career.

    • John

      I would say no. She’ll be 30 and possibly will have been eased out of the squad 12 months before. If she does not retire.

      • Bruce

        This is a player that will likely score in bunches in the NWSL.

        • Ando91881

          Yes. But will she be playing for CRS in 2017? Or off in Europe somewhere once again?

          • John

            If she decides to retire from the USWNT she’d make a ton of money playing for one of the top Euro teams like Lyon, PSG, Wolfsburg or Man City.

          • Steglitz49

            Why on earth would they sign her? Would you recommend her?

          • John

            She scores buckets of goals at club level. She’s even scoring buckets of goals at a club coached by the inept Rory Dames.

          • Steglitz49

            She has a reputation for choking and being marked out of matches. Missing that PK is not a good calling card. She also shot over in play.

          • Bruce

            I don’t think that will be the determining factor. Lloyd’s continued “leadership” of the team sets the tone for many, most particularly CP.

          • Steglitz49

            To which coach would you recommend her after today’s match?

      • anonymous

        She isn’t a bad player, thish team has kept on much worse and I’d say she still has development potential IF Carli Lloyd leaves

    • Hans Castorp

      I doubt it. She doesn’t need the money and can probably find more fulfillment in life at this stage doing something else than being a washed up sub.

      • Guest

        Why do you say she does not need the money?

        • Hans Castorp

          She comes from a very well off family IIRC and she has the means, support, and academic ability to train for a second career.

          • Guest

            Yeah I am sure she wants to feed off of her family for the rest of her life. And I am sure you know every detail.

          • Hans Castorp

            You asked for speculation, and I gave it. Feel free to give your own.

          • Guest

            what? she has banked a lot of money and has potential to make a second career.

      • John

        She’s got the looks for TV and she is doing some sports presenting on Web TV. She is also quite articulate so the sports media would be a good option for her.

        • Bruce

          It would hurt me personally to see her turn into Kate Markgraf.

          • mockmook

            She should replace Markgraf — has to be a step up.

            Did you catch Margraf complimenting Pinoe on how she was rounding into form after she dribbled a ball out of bounds?

          • Bruce

            Listening to Markgraf the casual fan has to be asking him/herself why we don’t just field Rapinoe and Lloyd and get everyone else out of the way.

        • Steglitz49

          Hard to do after blowing a PK.

          • John

            Every top player has missed a penalty. Missed one at the Copa America final.

          • Steglitz49

            I have never heard of Miyama missing a penalty that mattered.

            Her freekicks were equally as lethal.

          • John

            How many has she taken to win a match? Kumagai, a defender, took the one that mattered in 2011.

          • Steglitz49

            Miyama slotted home the very first penalty cool as a cucumber. Hope went one way and the ball in the other corner.

            The WC-11 final was Miyama’s match. She scored the 1-1 equalizer, hit the corner for the 2-2 equalizer, netted her penalty and picked up a yellow card along the line.

          • Frozen Blue

            Yeah but those top players have proven themselves time and time again, Press hasn’t.

      • Frode

        I have a different feeling about this. As long as Press’s heart and head are in it, she should be a central player on this team through 2020, particularly as they bring on younger, technical players.

        • mockmook

          Her “heart” isn’t in it. Not in the way we expect top athletes to be.

          Her stupid pass back to Pugh in the COL game and her missed PK just reinforced that she is missing something from her soccer “heart”.

    • x

      No. Since she went into this tournament a sub and she’ll be 30 by WC19, she needed a good, stock-raising performance to stick around. But she hasn’t done anything to close the Morgan gap and there should be more forward options breaking out between now and then. She’d have to do something big to stay in the picture because nobody wants a 30-year-old bench player with a reputation for disappearing in big games.

    • dw

      I vote no. See: Gaetane Thiney. Although Lavogez has survived.

  • Gary Diver

    For the lack of a nail, the shoe was lost. . . . For the lack of intelligent coaching the Olympics was lost.

    There was a lot of question concerning USWNT going into this game that resulted from the Colombia game. The free kick goal in that game would never have occurred if Ellis had not started a game-unready Megan Rapinoe. There a steady downhill trajectory from that point. The Butterfly Effect – everything is interconnected.

    • David K Anderson

      As I ranted about downthread, this was a terrible, terrible game on Ellis’ part. The one thing going right in the first half was Tobin Hearth’s creation. We had plenty of opportunities, with so much possession and so much pressure. Finishing was off, but the chances were there.

      So what does Ellis do? Why, move Heath to RB, of course! /headdesk

      Then Long off instead of Brian (who was invisible to that point and beyond, but did finally make her presence felt in extra time…and nailed her pk). Then completely waste a sub on an injured ‘Pinoe. Then…well…you get the picture.

      • Guest

        Dunn was a positive sub. I thought she was great. Lloyd however, should have never been on the pitch. My goodness she was awful with the ball at her feet.

        • David K Anderson

          No problem with bringing Dunn on (I’d have started her, in fact). Only with it being Long who came off, not Brian.

      • Ethan

        Yet, the two best chances, Lloyd’s shot cleared off the line and Pugh’s shot over the bar, came about when Heath wasn’t at right midfield. I wouldn’t say Heath had a bad game, but I didn’t think she was that great in the first half. Her best play of the game came while she was at right back when she robbed the Sweden player and cleverly dribbled away from her. I didn’t see any of that when she was at midfield.

        • NYRick

          I don’t think it was a great game either by Tobin by any means. Maybe one of the worst ones I’ve seen her play for the NT in months.

          • David K Anderson

            Strongly disagree, at least until she got shoved into the RB slot.

          • x

            I thought she did well to create space for herself to serve the ball in and terribly with the actual services. It felt like every cross was straight to a Swede.

        • Guest

          Tobin had a poor game by her standards this year but I don’t think she was that poor. I thought her best play also came at right back but was the shot the Swedish keeper dove on to keep out.

          • Frozen Blue

            She is always more effective on the left and they should have left her there.

  • Gary Diver

    Coaches Determine Tournaments

    Pia Sundhage simply out-coached Jill Ellis, who knew what strategy that Sundhage was going to use and had no viable answers for it.

    • Steglitz49

      In this case the ref almost stole it.

      • Guest

        On both sides. It should have been 2-2 going to PKs

    • Frode

      She had viable answers but chose not to deploy them soon enough, either out of arrogance, overconfidence or fear. Sundhage forced the US attack out wide for long crosses while at the same time neutralizing the aerial threat with Fisher, Seger et al. The counter move would have been to attack centrally with players like Horan and Press, and keep Dunn/Pugh and Heath as wingers to pinch in, penetrate to endline close to goal for back passes on the ground. Of course this would mean removing Lloyd or moving her back, which actually happened for brief stretch before she drifted back up top.

  • Joel

    I am so proud of this team.

  • Gary Diver

    Is Morgan Brian healthy? Am I wrong, but she seemed a shadow of her WC15 presence.

    • David K Anderson

      She was invisible until the second period of extra time. I found it odd she wasn’t substituted when Dunn came on, instead of Long. Made her pk, though…

      • Terry Lash

        I think she was a positive presence in the first half, but almost invisible in the second half. But I agree that she should have made for Dunn instead of having Long come out.

      • CED

        There is no #6 they trust besides her in an important game. She took the best PK of all US players.

        • Guest

          I thought Horan’s PK was better. Struck hard, clean and on the ground.

        • David K Anderson

          She was also (finally) good in the second period of extra time. But at the time that sub was made, Long had been, by far, the more effective deep-lying mid.

        • Kevin

          Horan’s was better, perfectly placed with much more power.

          • CED

            Horan’s was actually saveable if you go the right way, Brian’s wasn’t b/c it was side netting.

          • Kevin

            Brian’s didn’t have much power on it and the keeper almost got it. Much harder to get to them on the ground, especially with any pace on them like Horan had.

          • CED

            Watch the replay Horan’s Pk was pretty central and saveable, Brian’s side netting with enough speed to make it unsaveable

          • rkmid71

            Somewhat related, I noticed that in Brazil Australia PKs, the Brazilian goalie stepped out significantly. Well before the ball was kicked. Especially at the beginning, less so towards the end. The rule is that goalies must keep on the line and not move until the ball is kicked. Refs typically allow leeway, particularly sideways. But I was surprised how far they stepped out, it looked like a couple steps BEFORE the ball was kicked. Maybe if they time it so it’s not too much before the ref will let it go?

    • Steglitz49

      Sweden were too good for them.

      • Anon

        Sweden wasn’t good and USA was a dumpster fire compared to potential due to mismanagement. It was two not so great teams grinding it out. When we drew Colombia I knew a PK shootout was in the future

    • I thought Moe was good today..

  • sudeep das

    Few random thoughts –
    So taking Megan Rapinoe to Rio did not work out.
    Don’t know why they didn’t involve Pugh more in the 1st half.
    Lack of finishing has been a lingering problem for the USWNT throughout past year.
    Did they ever practice for the penalty shootout?
    A France vs Brazil will be a dream final.

    • JL

      That will be a nightmare final.

  • Gary Diver

    Tobin Heath Strategy

    Is it possible that Sweden wanted Tobin Heath to work herself to death?

    I was amaze how often they let Heath get the ball and let her do all of the work by herself. Heath was effective in first half, but fatigue seemed to set in a little late in second half.

    • David K Anderson

      I’d argue that her second half lack of effectiveness was almost entirely due to Ellis moving her to RB. Absolutely absurd move…

      • Bruce

        1000% agree.

      • Guest

        She was at RW for a while in the second half but they didn’t work the ball to her as much and started rushing possessions.

    • Frode

      Sweden allowed the US their wide attack because they had the aerial advantage, and heath intelligently took a lot of those balls into the center.

      • JL

        And the US has a player that is excellent in the air, and taller than most of the Sweden players, but Ellis foolishly decided to go with Long over Mewis.

  • Guest

    For the hell of it, predictions for 2019 WC opener lineup?

    • Hans Castorp

      lol

    • Bruce

      The only person who knows is the one calling all the shots:

      Carli Lloyd

      • Guest

        Lloyd quote to ESPN “You best believe we will be back stronger in 2019 – 2020”

        Oh no

        • CED

          WNT will lose early in WCup 2019 if LLoyd at 37 has a role. It would show a complete lack of player development to have her around considering her poor play as an actual CM that has lead to a system catering to her inability to pay her actual position of CM

    • David K Anderson

      That list needs moar Lavelle…

    • CED

      Virtually impossible to tell for a dozen reasons such as new CBA terms, will it be as restrictive on floaters? Will the allocation process which locks USSF to player be loosened. How many people will retire…Solo, LLoyd, Krieger, etc.. What formation will be preferred, the current 4-5-1, 4-4-2, 4-4-3

    • Guest

      morgan isn’t going anywhere unless she wants to. She’s going to captain with Heath IMO.

      • anonymous

        seriously, she has carried this team on her back so many times what is with the hate? The stupid PK?

    • mockmook
      • Guest

        I forgot about Sonnett, here’s my new one:

        Heath…..Groom/Horan……Dunn
        ………….Pugh………………………..
        ……………………..Brian…………….
        …………….Colaprico……………….
        Short…Sonnett…..JJ……Gilliland
        …………………Naeher………………

        Perhaps Killion instead of Colaprico

  • Gary Diver

    Any Calls for Jill Ellis’ Removal?

    Her coaching decisions in this tournament, including her Rapinoe Experiment, were simply god awful. One bad decision after another. I would love to know what Michelle Akers is thinking right now?

    • John
      • NYRick

        99ers probably happy today. If this team won this OG, they could have layed claim as best US team ever in this 2-3 year run. Now the 99ers can breath easy again.

        • Guest

          They probably do not care. I doubt anyone remembers them besides people on this site.

          • NYRick

            Ex players remember. Especially a famous NT. The 72 Dolphins still enjoy 17-0 for the ones still alive.

        • Steglitz49

          The USWNT can’t cope with them Vikings.

      • Did she tweet anything else at all about the game? If not, ha.. awkward.

    • Steglitz49

      Neid survived WC-11 in Germany but Sasaki fell on his sword when the Nadeshiko failed to qualify for this OG.

    • JL

      I’m sure the calls for Ellis to be fired will come in the next few days.

    • dw

      #FireEllis

  • NYRick

    Hope called Sweden “cowards” in post game interview. Said they refused to play open game. Ah duh, Hope. Why should they? They played a strategy to give themselves a chance, and low and behold, they got that chance. Got the ugly game and took it. Stay classy Hope. Compliment your opponent and old coach on the upset. It wasn’t your team’s day.

    • anonymous

      She said that? OK, I take back pretty much every nice thing I ever tried to say about her. Gross. I hope she retires.

      • NYRick

        It’s on espnw.com now.

      • Guest

        Especially since Schelin is an old friend of hers. Bitter she scored on you, asshole? Not a good look.

    • MurderOnZidanesFloor

      Hope Solo’s lack of sportsmanship is a total joke. I hope Dahlqvist is still laughing at her.

      • Cc W

        It was a tactic – I don’t fault her for that just as I don’t fault SWE for bunkering, When CP missed, Hope knew that her only hope was to stall – it didn’t work.

        • Guest

          Explain the tactic? Taking the heat off of her teammates? you really think seh cares much about Christen Press? She loves attention.

        • guest

          Stop trying to defend her. She’s a classless asshole. She’s always been a classless asshole. This isn’t some tactic by her to take pressure off her teammates. This is just her being a petty, sore loser with a bad temper.

    • David K Anderson

      She deserves a suspension for that one…completely unacceptable, and an embarrassment.

  • southbayfan

    Well there goes the Victory Tour money.

    • Wow, actually didn’t think about that part of it. There goes $200k each for these players. That has got to hurt.

      • CED

        There goes all the bragging about projected revenue for FY 2017. USSF loses almost 2 million on the OG, less now b/c they get to go home early but still losses of 1mil +. That money is recouped by a VT which isn’t happening now.

        • John

          They’ll line up a bunch of high profile friendlies in the next couple of weeks. Just watch.

          • Already have 2 in September. How many have we had this year? Don’t they have a 20 friendlies a year contract.?

          • Bruce

            2017 FY Budget (p 57): 10 Victory Tour friendlies was the plan…

            http://resources.ussoccer.com/images/160127-AGM-PDF-FINAL.pdf

          • tonysocref

            Contact don’t specify minimum number of matches for the year. Only specifies 10 match VT for gold and 3 matches for silver and bronze. No medal = no guaranteed # of matches.

          • CED

            They already pre scheduled 2 friendlies a month ago for the next FIFA window. Thailand and Netherlands are going to have much lower attendance not being on a VT. Thailand is a joke game.

      • Steglitz49

        More like 100k but still more than any of the swedish players earn.

        • CED

          Way more than 100K..

          75K individual bonus

          1.8M team bonus from VT

          $1.20 per ticket sold pooled for team

          25K US Olympic Committee bonus which they do for all sports

  • Kevin

    Time for Carli to hand her jersey over to the team’s new #10… Mallory Pugh.

    • Observed

      Only after Pugh has a doctor look at that “sprained” ankle.

      BTW, our U-15 team beat MEX a few days ago. Our U-20s and U-17s are fierce. Time to give these girls a look. Dump the old ladies for WC2019.

  • Sunny d

    In this one I’d say a big reason for this loss was coaching errors made by Jill. A lot of coaching errors. In my opinion she’s done more trying to convince us that her techniques are great instead of doing so. I saw a comment once that said the USWNT is like the kid that never study’s for a test but ends up getting an A. This time they failed.

    Defense was not good at this Olympics. Jills “modern fullback” Kling did not impress me at all. O’hara was good but also got burned a lot. Engen was alright having not played a lot this year. Broon, well broon handles her business as usual. Oh jj 🙁 . Krieger was good whenever she was allowed to play. And Hope had one great game against France but everything else was no Bueno (that’s just my opinion, don’t kill me)

    Rapinoe should not have been in Rio. Waste of a slot and waste as a sub. Tobin Heath should have never been at Right back. Carli Lloyd should never take free kicks.

    Finally, the refs weren’t that good

    • Ashley C

      Jill’s tactics have never been all that convincing at times. She has her moments but the team often does well in spite of her. Not saying she doesn’t deserve credit at times but this team often wins on their sheer athleticism and individual skill – and not always because of Jill’s tactics and subs.

  • sudeep das

    The Zika chants have definitely gone to Hope Solo. Now she calls Sweden cowards for not playing an open game (similar to Ronaldo calling Iceland – only he won the Euro). The entire world knew that the Swedes will bunker down and play on counter attacks. USWNT were not creative enough to solve that. Another problem that has developed recently is the disappearance of Lloyd’s long rangers in the effort to play that possession style till the final third. How effective her shots could have been in this game!!!

    • Guest

      You mean like her past 25 free kicks that have landed in the stands? Please

      • sudeep das

        The long rangers during play as well as the free kicks. Somehow that confidence and accuracy has gone from her game because of trying to play this style.

        • Guest

          Yeah, when is the last time she scored from long range? She stopped shooting from long range since her shots all end up in the stands.

        • Kevin

          She’s never had accuracy from long range or short range.

        • rkmid71

          Have you seen Lloyd’s NWSL stats? It was gone a long time ago. In 2015, 56 shots, 15 shots on goal, 4 goals, 0 assists. What accuracy are you referring to? I don’t know what style was in Houston, but it certainly didn’t help the team win.

    • Steglitz49

      Lisa Dahlkvists pass was a dream and Stina Blackstenius cool finishing absolute class.

      The useless ref team almost stole the match.

      • NYRick

        Lighten up Steg. You won. Be happy.

        • Steglitz49

          It should have been 1+0 in regulation. Sweden had to play an extra 30 minutes. It also should have been 2-1 in extra time.

          With refs like these, who needs to play the matches?

          • NYRick

            It’s not very sporting to complain about the refs when you win. If you lose it also tends to be sour grapes, but it is understandable sometimes. And I agree, this match had some strange calls, least of which was the howler of a flubb on the Lotta goal in OT.

  • Gary Diver

    Rope-a-Dope Soccer

    If ugly soccer become the new norm, it will be the death of this game in the United States. Even long-time soccer commentators called Sweden’s play ugly.

    Soccer is supposed to be the “Beautiful Game”. This kind of soccer is not beautiful and if this the future I am out as a fan.

    • Hans Castorp

      US would have been fine with a healthy and full roster IMO

    • MurderOnZidanesFloor

      Its a tactic that has always been around. Its nothing new.

      As a neutral I actually really enjoyed the game. The downside was the officiating, not either side’s tactics.

      • sudeep das

        The Italians since the 50s were famous for this style of defensive play called Catenaccio

        • John

          Mourinho plays it as well.

        • Steglitz49

          It is not known whether LagerbĂ€ck’s insightful comments on the Brazil game had some effect but the Swedish defense tightened up.

          The refereeing was appalling. The refs must know the rules at least. It helps if they can see too.

  • NYRick

    I guess the “equal pay thing” with the men’s team will have to be tabled for awhile with no VT matches.

  • Frode

    Lloyd looked devastated in her post-match interview, but she said all the right things. The only first person pronoun she used was “we.”

    • Cc W

      I’m sure she and the players are devastated – they had been on a roll. But like every streak, it has to end at some point.

      • Steglitz49

        Lost to China in a friendly. China just lost 0-1 to Germany but they missed a PK which hit the post and bounced out — while they played with 10 as well.

        • Cc W

          Friendlies are fine, but Abby’s final game when all they did was try and get Abby to score over and over and over. Tourney play matters.

          “She sorta believes” cup coming again next year

    • Steglitz49

      It is we when she loses.

  • Ashley C

    I know Solo is mad and she wants to win but yikes @ her post-game comments. I think WoSo needs a good villain but Solo is never going to be like that with her off-field problems. Better teams are outplayed and win all the time but I don’t think that makes Sweden cowards. That’s football and tactics for you, Hope.

  • NYRick

    Serious question: does this match effectively end the Lloyd and Hope era, and maybe Pinoe too?

    • Cc W

      Yes

    • Steglitz49

      Yes. At least in a sane world.

      • CED

        WNT decisions aren’t based on sanity….they took Rapinoe to an OG

        • dw

          And used 3 subs on her in 2 games.

    • Terry Lash

      Not with Ellis as the coach. She will keep them on the team.

    • John

      You would have to say that for Lloyd and Hope yes. Carly will be almost 37 at the next WC. Hope almost 38.

    • NOPE. no chance we will be that lucky. Maybe Hope, but no way Carli.

      • Cc W

        I think Carli’s body is going to fail her. She’ll try but she won’t be there for 2019

        • Yea that is the more scary part. If she remains mostly “healthy” she will still be even slower than she is now, which will be a disaster. If a coach can’t cut her, we are doomed.

          • Cc W

            Jill will cut her at some point – my guess at the end of next year. They’ll do their “She sorta believes” cup next year and it will be obvious that changes will have to be made. I also wouldn’t put it past Carli to go get a big paycheck playing for Lyon next year.

          • Guest

            I doubt Lyon would be foolish enough to sign her. Plus they have Maro, Abily and Lavogez for #10s. If anything they need a DM

          • Agreed – they don’t care about the American “star” that isn’t Alex organ. And Lloyd’s play does not jive with Lyon’s style.

          • kernel_thai

            She keeps talking about Liverpool

          • Cc W

            She wouldn’t have to learn French – I think she’s going to take a pay day at some point.

    • Kevin

      Most likely the end of Lloyd, Solo, Pinoe and Krieger as anything but backups.

      Wouldn’t be surprised if Sauerbrunn wasn’t a starter in 2019 either. She was great all tournament, but she’ll be 34 & 35 years old for the 19WC and 20OG amd lose at least a step or two between now and then.

      • Cc W

        Broon might be able to stick around, CB can have a longer career.

        • Kevin

          Agreed… that’s why I didn’t include her in the initial list and more of a “maybe”.

          Also, next cycle will probably be the last for Heath, Klingenberg, Press, O’Hara and Alex.

          Fortunately, Pugh probably has 4 cycles left in her. I can’t wait to see how great she becomes over the next 8 years.

          • Cc W

            Agreed – your 28yo players make it through the next cycle. You have an experience core, and you can bring lots of early 20s and younger along to develop.

    • Cc W

      Hope will retire at the end of the year – probably after the NWSL season. Her house is for sale her in the Seattle area. She might go get a big paycheck from a European team and be out of the public eye.

    • dw

      Notice you excluded Press? I think she’s this year’s Gaetane Thiney. Sorry, Rick.

      • NYRick

        No I see your point. I was more talking about the above 3 from a longevity and age standpoint, and really being a big part of immovable culture core on the team.

        As for Press, I don’t know what to really say. It’s frustrating but the human being in me has to feel really bad for her. Even aside from the PK, she had a great look in the final minute of the second OT stoppage time and she sailed a shot top right over the crossbar. That was her moment right there. That would have erased all the negativity and doubters forever if she buried that for the winner. HOFDiC would not have been able to put a single mindless link hereafter. For some, I guess it’s not meant to be. A shame since she seems like a really nice person and one you would like to see how her one big moment on this team.

        She seems like someone who would take it really hard. You can have sports amnesia, but this one was tough and is going to linger. What that means to her NT career, well you do the math? Next big tournament is still 3 years away. This was her window (this past cycle) and you’d have to figure she’s done as well. I see her maybe even playing club soccer in Europe for a year or so more and than retiring and going into media etc.

  • Steglitz49

    This is the worst refereed match I have seen.

    FIFA must urgently do something about WoSo refereeing. Meanwhile the ref team must see the opticians asap. Hopefully it is not contagious.

    The refs need to know the rule book as well as be able to see.

    • Gary Diver

      What were the worst 2-3 calls?

      • NYRick

        Lotta non goal is 2nd OT is an embarrassing call given the circumstances. That’s number one.

        Also, the game was chippy, but that was to be expected. Both teams have chippy players and this was an elimination match.

        • Cc W

          Such a bad call. And the soccer gods made it right.

      • Steglitz49

        Schelin’s goal was a goal.

        The US goal came from a move that started off with a foul. Other fouls were not given, including at least one near the US box.

        The ref repeatedly ignored off-side flags in the swedish area but when Lotta scored she did not.

        She should have stopped play sooner when Rolfö was injured. Why the US did not put the ball out I can’t understand. Later in the game Dunn played it back to sweden after the Swedes had put it out for an injury, which must be counted Crystal for merit.

        It could be argued that too many decisions went against Sweden to be truly considered to be chance occurrences.

        • MurderOnZidanesFloor

          I noticed another one very early, when Rolfo was going for a header on a corner and Long seemed to be halfway to ripping her shirt off. Something tells me we won’t be seeing those officials in the medal matches.

          Can’t agree with the last sentence though, the officials were incompetent, not biased.

          • Steglitz49

            They were lopsidedly incompetent.

        • Ethan

          Fair points, Steglitz49, but Lloyd was incorrectly called off late in the first half, and Dunn was incorrectly called off on a promising buildup from Pugh’s nutmeg pass. Offside decisions were poor all game for both sides.

          • x

            You could see the ref/linesman’s OT2 clustermess coming all game from the poor offside decisions they were making throughout.

    • Camoes

      I am a total amateur when to comes to ref performance, but even I could see Schelin was robbed. Then Kate MarGAFFE (NBC commenter) said she would have to look at that one again to see if Scehlin was not offside. OK, Kate, look again and get back to us.

    • Chak Khan

      Aren’t they volunteers? If true, what more is expected of them?

  • calvester

    No one on this board should ever criticize France for not being finishers. The US had plenty of looks at the goal today, plus lots of set pieces. One of those should have gone in. Carli was unlucky to be called offside in the first half when she wasn’t, but the US got plenty of calls their way including Sweden’s breakaway in extra time, and Rapinoe’s boot to the stomach that led to the US goal. The bottom line is they should have been able to put away a game that they totally controlled in regulation. It’s hard to say if they would have won if they started without Carli, and had not subbed in Rapinoe. Carli’s wasted free kicks and horizontal runs to nowhere without dishing off certainly didn’t help. Her only value was as a human wrecking ball on defense. I’m amazed she doesn’t get called for some of her challenges. I like Christen Press, but that open look on goal with the entire right side of the goal open and then firing centrally into a defender definitely didn’t improve her stock.

    Time to say goodbye to Hope, Carli and Rapinoe. I’m hoping Becky has a few more years left in her.

    • Cc W

      Very true!

    • Guest

      And Krieger. Would not mind seeing Kling go as well honestly. Long is probably gone also.

    • MurderOnZidanesFloor

      I’m sure Sauerbrunn will make the next World Cup if she wants to go on. Her strength isn’t in her athleticism, its in the way she reads the game, I don’t see that declining anytime soon.

      • x

        My fear with Sauerbrunn for 2019 is that her athleticism will decline so far the mind and technique can’t make up for it anymore.

        • David K Anderson

          CB pairing of the future: Portland’s “Great Wall of Emily.” Sonnett, good as she is, isn’t the best CB on Portland’s roster. Menges deserves a call-up.

          • x

            I’d like to see both of them over the next few years, yes. Playing internationally in all combos with Brunn/JJ/each other.

          • BarcaSiempre

            Totally agree. I had no problems with Engen but Sonnett would have been an even better replacement for JJ and might have kept her on the bench. Menges is a very good player and has so much speed and is so heady, right now they could be the CB’s of the future.

            I agree that Horan would have been a good replacement for Brian and she does pass quickly. People say she is slow but she is a great passer and deadly with her head.

            Maybe some Thorn bias here, but when you have have Kling, Tobin, Horan, Long and Sonnett all playing together you see the chemistry and I agree with David, right now Menges is our best CB.

  • Gary Diver

    The Gang Who Couldn’t Shoot Straight

    I was amazed with the number of long-distance shots by USWNT that went 2 to 4 feet over the crossbar. I realize that were long shots, but the accuracy has to be better. Did a single shot come close to hitting the goal post?

  • Carli – in her post game interview today – still on the field said “we’ll be back for 2019 and 2020” – seriously. I can’t watch 4 more years of her starting for this team.

    • Guest

      Sound familiar?

    • NYRick

      Can’t give the company line today. You just maybe have to say, “Look, we’re devastated. We didn’t play our best and this one is going to hurt for awhile. Congrats to Sweden and Pia and good luck to them the rest of the tournament.”

      That’s what a captain of a championship team and a real leader says.

      • Frode

        That would have been a gracious post-game interview. I thought Lloyd did OK, but maybe I’m just comparing her to Solo. Yikes.

        • NYRick

          I think Solo believes her own BS after awhile. She has been propped up so high in this program by coaches and fans alike that she can’t accept the fact that the only other team maybe outplayed them and outwitted them.

          • #1Fan

            except one …Ryan. He got trashed for it

  • nwslfan

    Ugh it hurts so much bc we care so much. Go USA!

  • Nicole C.
    • Guest

      Shooting practice all off-season for everyone.

      • Chak Khan

        yup, corner kick and PK are a must!

      • Oregon

        Passing practice

      • Bruce

        Coaching clinic, more like.

    • MurderOnZidanesFloor

      If only the US had a clinical finisher like that Le Sommer for France!

      • Guest

        Don’t pressure the poor girl like that. Now that the US is out, I hope France wins gold and beautiful football prevails. They have been willing to play pretty physical and direct in this tournament though. Mbock really impressed me with her work against the US. Her and Renard covered Morgan without any issue at all.

      • BRA 4 vs SWE 0 OLIMPÍADAS

        LMAO LE SOMMER

    • BigBadBossMan

      Exactly. I blame Morgan more than anyone for this. I saw her waste so many easy chances over and over again. Morgan is super overrated. We needed Press a lot earlier in this match.

      • #1Fan

        She is overrated, but many of them are, She is not clinical at all , but is treated like she is

      • Ethan

        Apart from her goal, the only chance she should have probably done better on was the shot off of Press’ pass, and I don’t think I qualify that as the “easy” you’re thinking. I also thought she did well on the almost own goal in the first half. I’m wondering how closely you watched the match.

        • necron99

          Pk was saved.. at least it was on frame..

  • Gary Diver

    Strategies: Sundhage versus Ellis

    Sundhage decided to play rope-a-dope soccer and hope for a counter-attack to score a goal. When Sweden got the ball, they counter-attacked quickly which sometimes put USWNT into a panic. (This was somewhat like what we saw a lot of Euro 16 teams do.)

    Ellis played into Sundhage’s strategy by not counter-attacking quickly. When USWNT got the ball more often than not they played around in the backfield passing the ball around so they could “organize” their forward attack. That always gave Sweden time to get back and create their defensive form. It was hard to break down the organized Swedish defense. Ellis bringing her defenders up into the “organized attack” left USWNT extremely vulnerable to a Swedish counter-attack.

    Long Abby-Ball only works if you’ve got the people who can do it. It was amazing how many times long passes where attempted, but nobody was open or the passes were not accurate. Sweden’s rope-a-dope strategy wanted to wear USWNT’s patience down and make them do stupid things like launch a long ball to nowhere.

    • MurderOnZidanesFloor

      The US actually got their goal off an aerial ball forward, which Dunn flicked on and Morgan capitalised on the confusion. With Sweden sitting so deep and so narrow I do wonder whether Horan would have been the better forward partner for Morgan, rather than Dunn/Press.

      • NYRick

        For me, this game screamed for Horan over Long or maybe even Horan as a forward in some formations. For one, Horan is a Euro player and knows these players well and secondly, the US had a ton of corners and I think Horan is their best player in the area on sheer technique. Also, what has happened to JJ on corners. She has become a non-factor.

        • MurderOnZidanesFloor

          I think Horan definitely needed to enter as forward. She’s great technically and in the air, both of which would have helped against Sweden’s packed defence.

          Good point on JJ too. Although the deliveries have been pretty poor all year from what I’ve seen of the US, so it might not be so much down to her as the lack of Holiday/Rapinoe from last year.

          • Dilma

            How many corner kicks did Rapinoe blast into the stands today?

          • MurderOnZidanesFloor

            True. But Rapinoe of this year is incomparable to Rapinoe of last year.

          • Dilma

            I hope Ellis learns from this that you can’t play someone who is a memory. Sport is about the here and now.

          • Gary Diver

            Did Ellis learn anything from the Colombia game?

          • Guest

            Heath’s deliveries have been pretty up and down but she served some dangerous balls in today. She had a couple stinkers too but so did Pinoe. Without a player like Abby though the US really should not rely on set pieces for a significant portion of their goals.

          • kernel_thai

            Well the big question is why if u thought Heath was doing a decent job on CK why have Rapinoe taking them when she is out there?

      • Guest

        That Morgan goal was due to individual heroics, and nothing to do with the coach.

        • Cc W

          And then the missed PK with one player to beat. Unfortunate turn of events.

        • Oregon

          Morgan’s goal: Due to misplay and then rebound from Swedish defender who took.a ball to the face. Rebound from her face.

          The Swedish goal and assist were more about team play and clinical
          nature of the assist and strike.

  • petitepea

    The bunker strategy was not a surprise, or at least it should not have been, but the US did not seem tactically or mentally prepared? Despite gobs of individual talent, comparatively more investment (to other women’s sides), the offense did not work effectively as a team, nor did they finish their chances – why not? The defense had issues but that’s not why they lost.

    What happens next?

    I was really pleased to see players like Usme from under resourced sides do their very best with the limited investment given to them. Watching Renard was really fun too. Lots of good soccer left on the board I hope! Good luck to Marta et al!

    • Cc W

      Wide open tourney – can France take advantage? All the underdogs will be inspired by Sweden.

      • Observed

        I just wonder how fast these Nordic women can recover in time to face a more powerful opponent in Brasil.

        • Cc W

          Not fast enough. The let down will happen, but don’t be surprised if Australia beats Brazil. Much like the US all the pressure is on Brazil.

    • Gary Diver

      “The bunker strategy was not a surprise”. A number of us states recently that it would be the best strategy to use against USWNT. Ellis’ response to this challenge was awful.

      • petitepea

        That’s what I mean. Why?

        • Frode

          Perhaps arrogance that the USWNT attack can eventually break down any defense. And also perhaps fear of changing things and failing. It seems that many coaches at this level will stick with what’s winning, even if there are warning signs, and only change if they are forced. (The Rapinoe thing is an outlier. Just crazy.)

          • CED

            The thing is if you look at past games against teams who played “bunker”..2 lines of 4 defending the US has depended on fortunate bounce or an individual moment of brilliance to win over breaking the team down. Morga’s goal today was fortunate to fall off a deflection off a Sweden;s players face. In comparison Sweden hot the US on text book counter that would make Diego Simoene proud.

  • NYRick

    I think many forget just how close last year’s WC was almost a disaster.

    This team had a bit too much hubris in them. I don’t think they looked all that great in the 3 previous games either. Sometimes teams just think they need to step on the pitch and the opponent will shake in their boots. They were/are the #1 team in the world, but the margin is not overwhelming.

    • Totally agree. That is why I was so critical and skeptical of the “heavy favorites” line coming into the tournament. Really, the gap was not big. Way over hyped by the US media.

      • NYRick

        Ray Curren article on here: “Should be no contest.”

        Dorrence: “Expect the US to dominate.”

        Sometimes, just shut up and play.

        • Guest

          In fairness they did dominate every statistic except the only one that really matters.

          • NYRick

            Soccer is the cruelest of sports.

            But from a tactics standpoint, they had to know Sweden was going to park the bus. In fact they only had to look back to last June to see a replay of this match.

          • CED

            The comments to me were silly. The US results against Sweden had been poor recently. They play the style the US doesn’t solve and they have quick forwards to hit US on the counter. Neither of our Cb’s are quick and were both beat by 35 yd ball and were not fast enough to track the player down. Sweden also had a chances on corners which were not defensed well, France exposed how poor our corner and free kick defense was earlier in the OG as they had a 3 or 4 free headers close in they missed

        • Cc W

          It is a bit ironic that the team that beat us bunkered rather than high pressing. All we heard is that they were trying to connect passes to get out of the press. Many passes were likely connected today, but it didn’t matter a bit.

    • CED

      I say it all the time and most on here go crazy. Ellis got lucky in the Wcup and her poor coaching and tactics was shown. She was thoroughly out coached. Wcup US were fortunate even in the Germany game b/c JJ should have been sent off and Alex should not have drawn a penalty b/c it was not in the box. The score was 2-0 b.c germany had to be reckless in the end b/c losing 1-0 or 2-0 is irrelevant and they gave up Ohara’s late goal

    • Ashley C

      I think a lot of the success of the team comes from the sheer individual play/brilliance and athleticism from players and not necessarily Jill’s coaching and tactics. Not saying she doesn’t deserve credit but the margins are very thin. And when the players look to her when the pressure is on I’m not so sure she can deliver tactically. I also think slowly but surely other countries are obviously getting better at women’s football and that helps too. Parity exists but it’s not as huge as it once was IMO.

  • NYRick

    Really not trying to be a wise-ass (because believe it or not I’m super pissed at this result) but does this loss effectively end Carli’s quest to become Best Player of All Time?

    • Guest

      Carli was never the best player of all time and no one ever really thought she was. Marta is the best and Carli can’t shine her boots. Akers is a close second to Marta though.

      • NYRick

        Galanis has boasted that was their goal.

      • Hans Castorp

        If she somehow scored a winning goal in this Swedish game then again in the final she could have easily made the case for most important player of all time, if not best technically. But she didn’t and it’s all over now.

      • John

        Akers was a World Class centre forward and a World Class defensive midfielder. She could have played at Centre Back as well and been equally as good. Best player the US has ever produced.

      • x

        Hmm, I think Marta needs a title to cement the claim. But as I’ve said upthread I’m hoping she gets it here.

      • thegirlnextdior

        Peep all of carli’s favourites on twitter. I’ve seen one where she likes a shade towards Marta lool

    • Cc W

      Yes

    • Ashley C

      I don’t think she ever was – but yes.

      She’s done a lot of great things and come up big but she’s always been a bit of an enigma to me as a player.

      • NYRick

        Hopefully you can see the degree of sarcasm in my post.

    • Anon

      I don’t know how to post gifs but when press came on where she could really be a hero I was all Tyra banks “I was rooting for you we were all rooting for you ” when she gaffed her two shots. I think she needs to drop the zen and bring back the fire she had at Stanford

      • Steglitz49

        Christen played marvelous soccer for Göteborg. Probably the best she ever played. She was much loved and admired.

        I guess she has her WC winners medal to put under pillow to help her sleep.

    • dw

      Not to Carli.

  • Guest

    Carli’s tweet “This one hurts. I am proud to be apart of this team. I am not stopping and will be more motivated in 2019 and 2020. Back to work soon enough”

    WTF. You are captain of this team. It is not about YOU. You are supposed to be the voice of your team, especially after such a devastating moment. Enough with the “I I I I I I I I I”

    • John

      Hope she means back to Houston…

    • Cc W

      Lyon – French champs back to back 2019-2020

    • Futbol5

      You can’t spell Carli without I.

  • Andrew Alberico

    Geno Auriemma takes heat for playing so many UConn women. And playing basically the same non-UConn women also. But he accomplishes something by doing that. Continuity. Chemistry. Better team play. I think whoever coaches the USWNT in the future should pick a starting team, and stick with it. No more damn experimenting. Soccer demands team play, chemistry. The USA has an embarrassment of riches. Too much great talent. It is not always the most talented team that wins, but the team that best plays together. Witness USA vs. Soviet Union hockey, 1980. Pick a starting team….stick with it….use subs the last 10-20 minutes or so. The interplay between the back line, mid-field and forwards is lacking. They need to build trust and cohesion…can’t do that with players coming and going.

    • CED

      The US problem is they aren’t playing people in their best position b/c they don’t want to and they cater to Lloyd. Brian should not be playing the $6, she should be playing the #8. Ellis has made no attempt to find a real #6. Pugh should be playing the #10, as she is the best play maker. Ellis lucked into the Wcup via the 4-5-1 as she created a problem in the centrally MF she could not solve. The red solved it for her by suspension forcing her to play people she had no intention of playing. Brian luckily fit in and Ellis kept riding that horse foolishly not seeking to really improve the system, tactics, etc,,,, They have been relying on individual moments over good team system. That falters against well organized teams. There is a reason they struggle against teams that full bunker or sit back but not full bunker.

  • Gary Diver

    “USWNT-Sweden Preview: In Current Form, Shouldn’t Be Contest”

    I hope Ray Curren enjoys the taste of crow.

    • Peter

      Waiter!!! Some crow as well for Herr or Frau Steglitz who told us that the US would surely win this tournament!

      • MurderOnZidanesFloor

        It is strange that the only Swede on a majority US comment section has been telling everyone before the tournament even started that the US is sure to win and Sweden have no chance. Was he lulling you all into a false sense of security?

        In fairness to Steg, he was completely right about Stina Blackstenius who took her chance brilliantly.

        • Steglitz49

          Thank you.

          How does one eat electronic crow?

          • Peter

            Just post a picture here of you eating regular crow.

    • RAY CURREN

      I am now officially an A-hole.

    • Guest

      He does not even watch the games though so he probably is unaffected

    • dw

      Ray Curren doesn’t know crows are black.

  • Gary Diver

    Two Soccer Curses Live On: the Curse of Manaus and the Curse of Winning WC

    It was reported in another post by Scooter McGavin, “One stat that really concerned me was that the commentator said during the Men’s World Cup, six of seven teams lost their next game after playing in Manaus.”

    And we all know that the WC winner has never won the Olympics gold medal the following year.

    • Camoes

      Cursed Manaus, the Slayer of Ambition.

    • Cc W

      And I think the back to back is harder than even this team realized. But having the 3rd star is better than another gold.

      • Guest

        I’m already over it looking for the 4th star.

        • Cc W

          Me too, Would have been nice, but now I don’t have to bother watching games on my work computer – hiding it behind other screens.

  • Gary Diver

    Grade Lloyd

    How well do people think Carli Lloyd played in this game? What kind of grade would you give her?

    • Cc W

      C+ – she had several nice hustle plays, but took ill advised free kicks missed badly and by her own account wants to score goals. She didn’t score a goal,

      • She did hustle. But in the first half, I was screaming for her to pass the ball, instead of just dribbling all over – and please, let Tobin take the free kicks. All of them. 0% of them to Carli.

    • Hans Castorp

      I don’t think she was as bad as people who wanted her cut yesterday are saying, but I think she will be as bad by the next cycle due to the reality of time. So i guess it doesn’t matter now.

      • Guest

        There was a gaping creative hole in the position she was supposedly playing. I think there is a case to be made that Press and Pugh would have both been better in that position. Maybe she is still good enough to be a sub but Lloyd is anywhere near my starting XI

        • Bruce

          This.

        • CED

          Pugh is a natural #10 and is not played their b/c it doesn’t fit the system designed to cater to Lloyd. There is no play maker in the central MF, thus every thing comes from wide. The few central attacks come when Pugh pinches in and play makes trying to play people in and/or quick one two’s.

  • Cc W

    Okay, I’m ready for a real game ha ha – who you got – France or Canada??? I picked the US and they lost, so go Canada!

    • x

      I’m going to drown my soccer sorrows in rooting super hard for Marta and Brazil to finally win a major tournament.

    • Anon

      Ugh anyone but Canada. France and Brazil are my faves and I’d be thrilled to see them 1 and 2

    • BoatyMcBoatface

      Man, respect to Canada as a whole…but yeah, please let anyone but Canada win! I can’t handle any Herdman smugness right now.

      • Cc W

        Me too – I’d be okay with Canada, but not Herdman! But France did what France does – does not have the mentality to finish it. And right now, Australia is taking Brazil to the brink – if Sweden winning was an upset, Aus will be an upset as well. Have to say, the fight of all of these teams just shows you that the US is going to have to be better going forward, because the world has caught up,

  • Guest

    Ellis logic:

    Sweden bunkering, putting all numbers behind the ball and any ball into the box is cleared by their towering defenders.

    *Brings in Rapinoe to slap a few balls right into said jumble of defenders*

  • Gary Diver

    Who were the best USWNT players in this game?

    For me it was Heath, Dunn, Pugh, Sauerbrunn, and (maybe) O’Hara.

    • guest

      Solo made an impossible stop, and pulled us back from the brink.

      • Steglitz49

        Which?

        • x

          Have to assume guest means the top-corner penalty in the shootout, right? The only SOG in regulation was the goal?

    • Cc W

      Pugh when healthy, Allie Long played better than I expected except against Renard, KO played well except her stupid foul. For Tobin, I guess I expected more – I expected her to score at least once and to have more of an impact – but maybe that’s just my expectations.

      • Are we talking tournament here? If so, Tobin had a great first 2 games. And it’s hard to say she should have done more overall since she didn’t play last game, and played defense for half of today’s game. I think a goal was in her, if we would have advanced. But I also think we have had to rely on her way too much this year. KO had a good tournament, Dunn I would say probably had the best in terms of production.

    • Steglitz49

      Dunn and Heath.

      • Bruce

        Heath, up until JE’s substitutions rendered her ineffective.

        Dunn, up until JE’s substitutions rendered her ineffective.

    • Bruce

      We are talking about the same Sauerbrunn who gave up on the play that led to Sweden’s goal? That Sauerbrunn?

    • CED

      Brunn got beat on the counter with JJ. That should really never happen as they made several bad errors. They had 2 back against 1 forward and got beat in the seam. They should always make sure not to get beat between the gap. If the counter long ball is forced to be wide, then you have potential cover from the other CB. The player has to eventually come central allowing help. Also, if you force the pass to be wide you have a chance for a recovery run yourself and also the player has a poorer angle. They did neither. The most dangerous counters are central.

  • Gary Diver

    Ellis’ Plan B

    Every coach faces situations where they need to shift gears and go to plan B. I was shocked to see Rapinoe as Jill Ellis’ plan B. Rapinoe looked bad against Colombia, is not match ready, and is extremely rusty. Ellis should be grilled on her many poor decisions in this tournament.

  • NYRick

    Where is Jersey Shore and of course the despicable HOFDiC character?

    Hiding?

    • Guest

      Probably plotting something prison-worthy against CP

    • Guest

      HOF boy is on the floor of some sports bar drunk, not believing how good the soccer gods were in making Press miss a crucial PK.

    • Yea lets just be grateful he isn’t here posting link after link about Press’ miss.

  • Gary Diver

    Jill Ellis Played Into Sundhage’s Hand

    If a team is using a rope-a-dope bunker strategy against you the last thing you should do is slow down the game when you get the ball so they can organize their defenses. The first thing USWNT did again and again was pass the ball around among the defenders which gave Swedish time to recover and organize. Effective USWNT counter-attacks were few and far between.

    • Steglitz49

      The US had the ball 65% of the time and the refs 100% of the time but still could not finish the job.

      • Gary Diver

        There were teams in Euro 16 that had the ball more than 65% of time and still lost. You cannot always let a team who is playing bunker soccer have time to set up their defenses. You need to counter-attack quickly and take advantage of when they are not organized.

        • Steglitz49

          Sweden counterattacked with verve. Dalkvist to Blackstenius. At least the ref did not find fault with that one.

      • brdn08

        If the US hhad the refs they easily could have dismissed two Swedish players via yellows for excessive fouls. You’re being markedly biased.

  • Cc W

    Ha ha – the fact that she responds…

    • Nicole C.

      She really gets a kick out of replying to her “haters”.

      • Guest

        Which is everyone essentially except her trainer, Jill Ellis, and all of the other USA athletes who do not follow the team but just know her name

      • Who’d she prove wrong today? Still waiting on that..

  • Guest Bot

    The arrogance just hours after a humiliation like that speaks volumes.

    • John

      I’ll give her a pass on that because she is obviously tired and emotional after losing the game.

      • Steglitz49

        Type in haste; repent at leisure.

  • Steglitz49

    A star was reconfirmed: Stina Blackstenius.

    • x

      Hell of a finish. Just perfect placement there.

      • Camoes

        Why is JJ so slow? These Vikings are not noted for pace.

        • Steglitz49

          Stina is. She won Sweden the U-19 Euros last year.

        • Bruce

          That was 100% on Broon. She totally gave up on the play and didn’t force Blackstenius to take an angle that would have allowed JJ to close.

          Amazing direct ball in, though.

          • Frozen Blue

            JJ was beaten in a dash for the ball several times that game.

          • Bruce

            But not on that play.

    • rkmid71

      And the final pass was brilliant, but also the composure of the other players involved in that counter. If I recall, there were about 2-3 quick passes and then the final pass and finish.

      • brdn08

        I think everyoe needs to watch the play develop. There was obvious miscommunication between Broon and Johnston and by the time the ball was played it couldn’t be sorted in time. Nothing really that Hope could do.

    • dw

      One good finish does not a star make.

  • Guest

    I think it was Rick but whoever said Lloyd was going to be worse than Wambach was 100 percent correct.

  • Hans Castorp

    Taking lessons from Trump here but there’s nothing we can do…although maybe the Tonya Harding people….I don’t know.

  • HAHA omg I seriously lol’d at this just now. And not in the good way.

  • Gary Diver

    Just One Game

    I know it is just one game, but I’ve waited for this for 15 months and this really hurts. I hope Jill Ellis is grilled about her terrible decisions in this tournament, including the stupid desire to place Megan Rapinoe on the roster when she is not even game ready let alone match ready.

    I could see it all fall apart when I saw Rapinoe on the match roster in the Colombia game and then how badly she played. Ellis’ strategy and use of players in today’s game will be studies for a long time to show how you can take the best players and not create the best team.

    • Hans Castorp

      There’s always the U20 WC….if Pugh isn’t out for the year with an injury we can get a preview of how her and Sanchez could match up in the future.

      • Gary Diver

        U20 WC16 is going to be something else. Playing in the rainforest during its summer (90 F with 90% humidity) and 12 time zones away. Yikes!

      • #1Fan

        this is what i hate. its not about Pugh or Sanchez
        its about a good TEAM. I wish folks would focus on that and forget the names

        • Hans Castorp

          Well…at some point it is about the names. A team of me and my buddies wouldn’t do very well, no matter how much teamwork we had.

          • #1Fan

            Ask Messi or even CR7..they won when he was off the pitch. USSF places to much focus on marketing names. I guess they have to, but they need to build a team, even if it does not contain the best XI players. It needs to be XI that complement each other and play as a unit. This endless search for the next superstar is not productive for anyone but Madison Ave

          • Hans Castorp

            A superstar would be nice. but right now a search for players that can shoot on target would be a step up from what we’ve seen recently.

          • dw

            You’d do even worse if Ellis was your coach. At the very least, you can expect her to sub in your most injured player when you are losing.

          • rkmid71

            Yea. But we aren’t talking about you and your buddies. We are talking about the US women’s soccer, the deepest player pool in the world by far.

    • David K Anderson

      I’m just repeating myself at this point, but yeah…absolute howler from Ellis. So many poor decisions…

    • Lindsay

      When JE made the Rapinoe sub for KO, my first thought was why would you sub KO instead of Kling. I was so sure we were going to come back and win that I didn’t really pay attention to the thought of JE having to use another sub on Pinoe. And in that moment she made herself look incompetent and just validated a lot of people’s thoughts of her making bad coaching decisions

  • BRA 4 vs SWE 0 OLIMPÍADAS

    1-Goodbye USA, go back to hell;
    2-A team with Dunn does not deserve to be champion of nothing;
    3-Crazy is the coach who puts Morgan to scores a penalty;
    4-Tobin Heath can kiss a lot and have sex with me for Press;
    5-Perhaps the time has come for the USA to choose the best opponents in friendlies

    • Steglitz49

      Your comment #4 is uncalled for. Please delete it.

      • Gary Diver

        I believe you are responding to a black hole and nothing intelligent will come back.

        • David K Anderson

          The HueHue troll actually made one good point: all those tomato can friendlies do nothing good for the team.

          • Guest

            They would probably play against better teams if given opportunity. Not easy to get France WNT to come play since their club season is so long. It was mentioned that USSoccer contacted 25 federations for the OG buildup friendlies

          • #1Fan

            here is the thing. They could play the NWSL all stars , a College all star team, heck they could play boys, they could find less commercial games AND get better.

          • Gary Diver

            I think I made that point many time, but the response was the USWNT wants to build up confidence with some solid victories. Notice that Canada, Brazil, and France played each other just before OG16?

          • kernel_thai

            The real kicker is before the Olympics, the last match the US played outside the country was the WC final against Japan. So yeah, they were well prepared to play in Brazil.

        • Guest

          Verily and Forsooth

    • Hans Castorp

      I don’t get your #2. You’ve got a confusing double negative. I can’t tell if you’re praising Dunn or hating her.

      • BRA 4 vs SWE 0 OLIMPÍADAS

        Dunn is a horrible player, as well as 99.99% of USWNT players

        • Hans Castorp

          She didn’t seem that bad.

          • BRA 4 vs SWE 0 OLIMPÍADAS

            She’s just struggling. The best US player is currently Tobin Heath

          • Breakers fan

            Get a clue. We all know the best players make absolutely perfect plays EVERY time they touch the ball. Every Brazilian player, man and woman does this.The smart fans who come from places other than the United States, you being one of them, know this.

          • BRA 4 vs SWE 0 OLIMPÍADAS

            zika

          • Breakers fan

            tpmw

          • Breakers fan

            Explain the US women vs. Brazilian women historical record and what it says about who has been better at the sport of soccer or futbol.

          • Don B.

            Oh no, you don’t. You can’t blame zika for your lack of mental development.

          • Breakers fan

            And that was not funny or classy what thousands of you all did with that. Very serious issue and one instagram photo is too much to handle. Nice work.

          • BRA 4 vs SWE 0 OLIMPÍADAS

            Boy, zika is just a joke. Here in Brazil, as well as Marta and Formiga, the most famous players are Morgan and Solo, so the impact.

    • Breakers fan

      You’re enough to make someone who thought maybe he liked Brazil’s team and wanted to root for them to win to now hope for them to lose. I hope most other Brazilian fans are both more intelligent about the sport and classier as a human being than you.

      • BRA 4 vs SWE 0 OLIMPÍADAS

        ZIKA

  • Miami66

    I had a feeling they’d lose this year, as all streaks come to an end. I just thought it would be in the Semi’s against Brazil, who now have a golden opportunity – as do France/Canada winner.

    Does anyone know what the Lloyd goal was called off for though? Offsides or foul?

    • Guest

      I don’t think it matters, it was definitely a foul and shouldn’t have been allowed.

    • David K Anderson

      I think it was called offside (which it wasn’t: a player near the top of the screen kept her on), but there was certainly a foul, so can’t complain.

      • kernel_thai

        My take on the foul (if that was what was called). Say the contact had been the other way and Lloyd had missed the header. Do u feel a PK would have been called? I understand they call fouls a bit differently inside the box than on the rest of the field, but I dont for a minute think they call a pk on that play so likewise they shouldnt be calling a foul on the offensive player.

    • I really did too think we would lose to Brazil in the Semi’s. But I thought we would get Bronze. No medal is surprising.

    • Guest

      Lloyd pushed the defender to the ground. Foul.

  • brdn08

    Carli has the right to keep competing for her position as long as she wants. Its up to the federation and the coach to make the decision on whether she belongs.

    • Bruce

      Or is it?

      • brdn08

        It is. If you really think Abby wanted to retire you’re fooling yourself. Rampone didn’t make her decision on her own either.

        • Guest

          Not true according to some of the reporting. Rampone stepped away. #1Fan claimed the same about Rampone and says he/she knew her personally

          • Yea she is the one player (beside Holiday) who stepped away on her own.

          • Guest

            I mean, she ‘made the decision’ to step away after being on the bench for a year

          • Guest

            She was dealing with constant injuries for the better part of 2 plus years. They called her into camp and she declined.

  • Bruce

    I’m more impressed by the inappropriateness of this tweet than Hope’s.

    • Seriously same. She acts like she is the only member of the team and calls the shots.

      • Guest

        Not “we will be back” or “we will rebound from this” …. it is “I will be back and I will work hard” such a shame this is the captain

        Brunn’s tweet really puts Lloyd to shame

  • Gary Diver

    What’s Next?

    After we empty our spleens, we can discuss what USWNT needs to do to go forward. There will probably be a truncated VT which will probably mess up what is left of the NWSL season. In some ways I would like to fast forward to the end of 2017.

    • Hans Castorp

      What’s the name of that top GK prospect in the youth/college system? How’s she doing?

      • #1Fan

        there are several. I hate all this “top rated” nonsense. Rated by who? Based on what ?

        • Hans Castorp

          I seem to remember one could have played for Canada but chose US. Do you know her? Or did I imagine it.

          • #1Fan

            to me, there is far too much of this rating stuff. Its usual based on very limited sample sizes and does no one any favors.

          • kevin

            devon kerr is her name. think she is a sophmore at ohio state this year. haven’t seen her name on YNT games lately.

      • Cc W

        Campbell

        • Actually heard she has dropped off a bit. Who knows though.

          • Cc W

            Let’s see what she does this year w Stanford. She played pretty well for the U23 team. But so hard to know based on those matches.

          • She should get back into camp now that they don’t have the VT. More time with senior team, the better. Same for Franch, she should be at every camp the next 2 years.

          • Cc W

            It’s Naeher’s job to lose, but I would like to see if there is someone else out there. Like her or not, Hope’s GK play is the one constant that kept the US in matches. I would hate for us to have some Siri Mullinix years…

          • #1Fan

            i will say this as a counter point. That is another major tournament in which a team with Pugh has flopped. Its about the TEAM, not necessarily the individual. Its about how they play as a unit

          • Cc W

            Very much so – and also the opponents.

          • rkmid71

            I can’t agree more. Maybe Pugh can recover in time to play in the U20 WC. Afterall, she’s not starting at UCLA until spring. Somehow I doubt it though.

          • Gary Diver

            The team concept is a coaching and culture issue. USWNT players are not coached to coordinate their play as a cohesion unit with a team identity and purpose. Ellis has failed to gel the best players in the world into the best team in the world and her game strategy today was as bad as Caitlin Murray has reported after the game.

      • Jane Campbell from Stanford?

        • #1Fan

          lol. ok.

          • See post above. Was guessing on who they meant. Don’t know much about her.

        • rkmid71

          She’s not 6′ tall per Steg requirements. Isn’t that Rutgers goalie 6′ and some others.

          • Steglitz49

            I accept 5’11”.

    • kernel_thai

      Thailand is next I believe…theyll be OK

      • Steglitz49

        Thailand? or the US?

    • One of a Kind

      What do we call a Victory Tour for 8th place?

  • Gary Diver

    Rapinoe Substitution

    I did scream when Ellis sent Rapinoe into the game. The British CBC commentator thought that Ellis was hoping Rapinoe could score directly off a corner kick. Two problems here: (1) Rapinoe is rusty as hell, and (2) scoring directly off a corner kick involves a high degree of skill and a large dose of luck.

    • Frode

      All 3 of her corner kicks were terrible, including the one she managed to keep in play. Rusty as hell, regardless of how she was doing in practice. I’m still shaking my head…

      • Cc W

        And also the several free kicks! Wasted opportunities.

      • Bruce

        Favorite moment of the match: as she was being subbed out in extra time, Arlo White said “well, she certainly left an impact on the game…”

        • NYRick

          Lost talking point, on Alex’s goal, Pinoe kind of fouled the player left on the ground during the that sequence as well. Anyone else think that was clean foul when she dispossessed her after the takedown?

          • rkmid71

            My understanding is that was her impact on the game. She got a way with a foul that started the sequence that led to the US goal.

          • dw

            Exactly so. Mug Asllani and score while she’s on the ground. Great work by Pinoe.

          • Steglitz49

            It was a foul.

            Pure and simple. The ref was a laughing stock. Because Sweden won, it will not be an issue, but Sweden were forced to play an extra 30 min AND won’t see the full benefit in their rankings because for ranking the match is considered a draw.

      • kernel_thai

        And that’s the talking point. How do u, going into a major tournament put urself in a position where ur corner kick specialist (Heath) doesnt take the kicks if she and Rapinoe r on the field together? It’s a different matter if Heath comes off but she didnt. U want to tell me Ellis threw Rapinoe in there hoping for a great cross in her 20 minutes Ill buy it but not having one consistent ck specialist when she was on the pitch for 120 minutes is just awful coaching.

  • Gary Diver

    NEVER BEAT YOURSELF

    There is never any disgrace in getting beat by a better team, but it is a disgrace to lose the match by poor coaching.

    • brdn08

      You may disagree with the USA’s tactics but the opportunities were there and the players didn’t capitalize. They have to own this.

      • Gary Diver

        Obviously there is blame to go around. For instance I cannot believe how badly the USWNT players were off target. But Ellis’ deliberate style play gave Swedish time to organize their defenses and eliminated any USWNT counter-attacks. One of the ways to attack a bunker strategy is quick counter-attacks which weren’t in the USWNT game plan.

        • Observed

          These women are supposed to be the best soccer players on the planet, and we see KO, Press, Lloyd can’t hit the broad side of a barn. I guess they need more experience.

      • Frode
        • Gary Diver

          Ouch! Murray hits Ellis where it hurts. Just a terrible coaching job!

  • NYRick

    Am I a bad US fan for this


    There was a moment in the second half when it was 0-0 whereas Carli had a near miss (clean shot in box that a defender blocked and it went just wide) and I kind of screamed as it was happening, “oh no please no, not her.” My wife watched the game yelled at me, “what it wrong with you, I’m going to watch it on another TV. How can you be rooting against them?”

    At that point, despite the fact I kind of knew it was going to be tight and come down to one goal, I just figured we were going to get it anyway. We were creating a ton of chances and corners at that point. I didn’t see Sweden scoring, but I did have a problem with Carli bagging the winner in a 1-nil match and being the “hero” again. In retrospect, I wish she put it in.

    Does that make me a bad fan?

    • BRA 4 vs SWE 0 OLIMPÍADAS

      It makes you be sensible. I spoke here as egos destroy the UWSNT, we are seeing just the beginning. TOBIN HEATH IS THE USA player BEST AND STILL CAN MAKE SEX WITH PRESS. She must be very happy

    • kernel_thai

      That may be enough to get u invited to the special soccer clinic at Guantanamo Bay. I think there will be paddle boarding or something like that. Have fun

      • Reality

        Galanis will be supervising…

        • NYRick

          As long as I’m allowed to sit and face north while reading my copy of Dorrance’s “Training Soccer Champions” I’ll be fine with it.

          • Reality

            Galanis does not allow such heresies for his inmates.

    • Harry T.

      In retrospect, I’m glad she didn’t.

  • BRA 4 vs SWE 0 OLIMPÍADAS

    In major competitions, when Solo uses yellow, the US lost

  • BRA 4 vs SWE 0 OLIMPÍADAS

    TOBIN HEATH IS THE USA player BEST AND STILL CAN MAKE SEX WITH PRESS. She must be very happy

  • Reality

    I think the team has been on the wrong path for some time under Ellis. She has set the tactics, tone and culture for the team in her enabling of the veterans which has retarded the evolution of the NT. She did inherit this situation to some extent but she has not done enough to move the team forward. We have been stuck in playing mostly a direct game that is dependent on speed, athleticism and stamina. Many of us thought that other teams had caught up with us in these strengths last year during the WC2015 besides being superior to us in technique and team play. We were fortunate that these teams were not quite up to snuff yet. This year has demonstrated that the gap has become even more narrow to the extent that a team like Sweden outlasted us through a PK game and ousted us from the OG. We need new leadership both with the coach and with the team that can truly free the NT from the shackles of the past.

    • Frode

      I think the USWNT has embarked down the right path, but real progress has been delayed by the Olympics. I commented in another article that I thought Ellis has actually done a great job turning over a lot of the squad in a short period of time while maintaining a real chance at Olympic gold AND building for the future. Given all the retirements, I’m not sure she could have put together a more competitive squad. It was her personnel management and tactics that were lacking.

      I expect steady, meaningful changes in personnel and tactics over the next 24 months.

      • petitepea

        Agree. When you say personnel, do you refer to players or administration?

        • Frode

          Players. Player management and tactics have been Ellis’s weak points.

      • Bruce

        She’s had 12 months of unprecedented access to the player pool and chose to play the exact. same. way.

        Why expect change now?

        • Frode

          Given the constraints of the CBA, Ellis’s player selection was good (Rapinoe nothwithstanding). Tactically, the way the USWNT plays now is very different than it was at the beginning of WWC15. There is not reason to believe that tactical evolution will not continue, and at a higher rate.

          • CED

            CBA is only a partial problem. Ellis refuses to play players in their best spots b/c she catered to LLoyd. Pugh should be the #10, Brian the #8, and find a #6. She refuses to do these obvious things thus the team has no play maker in the center of the field and Brian is stuck deep in front of the back 4 most of the time. The team has a bunch of forwards being forced to play wide to cater to lloyd.

          • Frode

            Have no argument there. Ellis selected 18 great players but limited their success through personnel mismanagement and its resultant effects on tactical options.

          • petitepea

            It seems like CL makes other players look worse than they actually are. The opportunity cost of having her on the pitch is staggering. I’ve never seen a “midfielder” keep her head down with that frequency. She seemed totally unaware of the rest of her team’s movement on and off the ball. It looked, to me, that Heath, Pugh, Brian, Morgan, Press, and Dunn were trying to play coherently and thoughtfully — but Lloyd just bounced around like a ping pong ball disrupting everything around her. At one point I thought I saw Dunn try to pass to Pugh but the ball was intercepted by Lloyd who took a shot from a worse angle. So frustrating. Hopefully, this is the end of it.

          • CED

            Unfortunately, don’t count on the end Ellis catering to Lloyd. Ellis is going to keep playing her and thus not playing everyone else in their best spots. I predict there is a 90% chance Ellis in 2019 is going to have a roster with 5 or 6 players in their mid 30’s and LLoyd at 37, all well past their prime. She will keep young talent off the roster to do it like Sanchez, etc…

          • Bruce

            We have seen flashes of tactical evolution, but no emergence of any true personality of this team in the attacking half.

            The Pinoe sub today speak volumes. In crunch time in the most important game of the year the team doubles down on the old fashioned Abby ball. I don’t call that progress.

          • Frode

            That substitution was nothing short of delusional on Ellis’s part. Hopefully, this early exit will shake some sense into the program and let it move forward.

      • Reality

        I have sympathy for Ellis because she inherited a mess of a situation with entrenched veterans. However, the path of transformation for the NT under Ellis has been driven almost entirely by attrition through retirement and injury. That was the real cause for new young talent to come to the team. However, Ellis has mismanaged the “improved” roster by continuing to play people out of position and moving them around like musical chairs so that the team never has able to establish a viable working relationship. The mid-field has never stabilized into a coherent unit and the presence and/or absence of Lloyd hanging around the goal only disrupts it even more. While our defense essentially won the WC and has been more consistent, the forward line has been mostly locked into a lone forward formation which I think has diminished Morgan’s effectiveness and prevented other forwards on the team from realizing their full potential.

        All in all, Ellis was fortunate to win the WC and now the full impact of our lack of progress in tactics and management has resulted in this unfortunate exit from the OG. I think a fresh start with a new coach is part of the answer to move the NT forward. The rest is more complex in dealing with the CBA, the player personalities, the veteran entitlement system, the movement of young talent up through the pipeline, etc. This will take some major support from Gulati whom I have little confidence in to do this.

        • Frode

          Yes. These are the personnel (player) management deficiencies I was referring to (thank you providing insightful details). And in some ways, those personnel decisions dictated tactical formations, particularly Lloyd’s stationing high and central. That was the foundation block, for better or worse.

          • Kevin

            For worse

        • Steglitz49

          I don’t feel sorry for her. She lived with the Veterans yet won the World Cup. That was her license to restructure the team.

          Having Christen Press take the final critical penalty says it all. The order is laid out in advance but having such a mentally frail player last was bizarre to say the least.

      • Steglitz49

        They knew they had to play the Olympics.

        Worse, during the 16 years they failed to win the WC, they talked up the Olympics. Now they are hoisted with their own petard.

      • mockmook

        The only involuntary turnover on the OG squad was the demotion of HAO.

        JE has made almost zero changes that weren’t “forced” on her.

  • guest

    You know you love woso when… I was watching this game on my tablet while waiting to go to the dentist for a procedure where i had to get knocked out for a bit. what. a. nailbiter. the nurse called me in just as PKs were starting. first thing i asked was for a score report when I woke up. not great news as a USA fan, but i do love a good underdog story. Schelin has a new fan 🙂

    • oh no!!! What a terrible way to find out haha

  • Gary Diver

    Department of Defense

    Did USWNT’s defense win WC15?

    There are some here who have argued that “attackers should attack and defenders should defend”. But over the past year, Ellis has decided that her defenders need to be actively part of her attack which leaves them vulnerable to counter-attacks. In this context, what happened today?

    Also, should Ellis have played Engen instead of Johnston? I always wonder about Johnston’s speed?

    • CED

      Having OB’s attack is necessary when most teams sit back b/c they don;t wnt to play b/c they have less talent overall. There is a reason teams like Barca, Real, Bayern have built teams with attacking Ob’s. They have to break down organized D’s playing 9 or sometimes 10 behind the ball. There OB’s getting forward allows there to be numbers to ideally make the 9 defending not able to have easy cover.

      • Gary Diver

        USWNT looked bad covering Sweden’s counter-attacks.

      • guest

        agree one key problem when trying to break down a sitting back team is failure to move the ball quickly and accurately.

        • CED

          Exactly. mentioned in another post. Quick ball movement to make them react and then a run off that reaction is what is needed. Try to play one, two’s, etc…change the field quickly along the top. Make them work covering runs and the quick ball movement often will eventually lead to a run or pass not being covered or later in the game tired legs lead to a mistake

    • Guest

      No she should not have

    • x

      …is Engen any faster than JJ?

      • CED

        JJ is really not quick, I would definitely say Engen is easily faster. None of the CB’s are fleet of foot.

        • David K Anderson

          Fastest CB called up was made an alternate: Sonnett. I tend to forget how pacey she is because she plays next to Emily Menges here in Portland…and Menges is a blur.* But Sonnett is fast…and moreover, is one of those players who can dribble almost as fast as she can run without the ball. I’ve seen her do that a few times this season in club play.

          *A blur who rates a call-up, I might add…

          • Guest

            Besides scoring on set pieces I don’t think Johnston is better than Menges in any way. I still want to see Menges improve her touches though. I think Sonnett is already better than Johnston too except in the air. She’s missed her marks a few times this year for Portland. Great news for Portland. They get their USWNT player and Henry back in time for a full weeks training. Feel bad for Tobin, I thought she was having a great tournament.

          • David K Anderson

            Agree on all counts. Menges’ touch has gotten quite steady in her own defensive third, but she still seems to lack confidence coming forward with the ball. But she’s a rock solid defender, has pace for days, and doesn’t really seem to tire much.

            Tobin seemed primed for a great finish to the tournament. But not as a freakin’ RB, ferchrissakes. That position shift was surreally bad.

            And yeah…most of our Olympians back for Seattle away. That’s this Thorns supporter’s silver lining, for sure.

          • mockmook

            The Tobin as RB was supposed to be used when the USA was protecting a lead and needed RB cover.

  • Calci0

    “The USA out-shot Sweden 12-4 and had seven corner kicks to Sweden’s one, while Schelin’s goal was Sweden’s only true dangerous chance of the match. Still, Sweden was tremendous in its defensive organization and made it difficult for the U.S. WNT, which had the majority of possession to create quality chances, especially in the first half.”

    ” The USA almost got behind Sweden’s compact back line several times in the first half, but was caught offside five times before the break.”
    http://www.ussoccer.com/stories/2014/03/17/13/19/140307-wnt-vs-swe-report

    “The US spent a bit more time in the attacking end than their rivals. But goalkeeper Hedvig Lindahl and center back Nilla Fischer marshaled an organized Swedish defense that frustrated the Yanks’ star-studded front line”

    “Sweden were content to sit back in a defensive posture for most of the final stages, comfortably absorbing some late US pressure”
    http://www.mlssoccer.com/post/2015/06/12/usa-0-sweden-0-womens-world-cup-match-recap

    If you were thinking this came from today’s game, you’d be wrong. This was from the 2014 1-0 loss in the AC. It doesn’t “seem” like the team adjusted from that game or the 2015 WC game how to play against a talented defensive team, that’s taking a defensive posture a majority of the game…..

    • CED

      How many were shots forcing a save? Especially a good save? How many were not good shots? ie..ones blasted over the goal. A team sitting back will gladly let you shoot from outside the box in most cases

  • Frode

    CAN 1 FRA 0. Beckie with the assist. Beautiful.

    • Wow, if France and USA both go out in the QFS. That will be insane. 2 weeks ago, everyone said those were the two best teams – by not a close margin.

      • Guest

        They still are. The best teams don’t always win though. Canada has been playing much better than Sweden though.

    • Steglitz49

      It was a fabulous move and Beckie excelled.

  • Ashley C

    Beckie’s first touch is glorious. She’s had a fantastic tournament so far.

    • Hopefully she brings that back to Houston.

      • Ashley C

        Hopefully. She’s been one of the players of the tournament so far for me.

        • Bruce

          She’s playing on the best team (with a capital T) in the field.

          Wouldn’t be at all surprised if they won it all.

    • Gary Diver

      I’ve asked this before, why did USWNT throw her overboard? She is only 21-years old and already has around 12 goals for the Canadian national team. I wonder if Ellis would even play her if she was on USWNT roster?

      • Hans Castorp

        Wasn’t she cut going into the 2014 u20 wc….which the US promptly lost. So they said goodbye to a top prospect and in return gained…nothing.

      • Frozen Blue

        She has been one of the best stickers of the tournament for me so far.

      • Hans Castorp

        Yeah just looked it up. While Beckie was being nominated for the Hermann trophy, she was being cut from the U-20s. I guess to make room for (no-name we’ll never hear from again). Maybe not quite the Olajuwon over Jordan NBA draft, but certainly not one of the better coaching decisions to come out of the youth development system.

        • Bruce

          Sam Bowie over Jordan

          • Steglitz49

            David Bowie?

          • Bruce

            David Bowie and Sam Bowie had similar success during their NBA careers

          • Steglitz49

            Thank you. I knew there was a dog buried there. A whole kennel by the sounds of it.

          • Bruce

            The story of Sam Bowie is like the Wallander novels. Everywhere you look there’s a dead body and the only “happy ending” is when memories are erased due to Alzheimer’s.

          • Bruce

            Dogs of Riga.

      • dw

        Vets already had too many kids nipping their heels. Some have to be culled quietly and out of the spotlight.

      • Guest

        To be honest, she is not better than Dunn, Morgan, or Press IMO

  • Donald Trump

    Hope Solo is my kind of a person.

    • Anon

      Assholes bumping assholes

  • x

    Oh my god, we France’d. We dominated the shots and the possessions and barely gave up a clean chance on goal and we France’d our way straight out of the Olympics.

  • calvester

    Both the US and France are out. So much for Group G being the group of death.

    Canada in the semi and the US goes home. Karma for 4 years ago.

    • Duckman

      About time Canada did something, do they have a gold medal in the Olympics yet?

      • Steglitz49

        Shared gold in swimming I believe.

    • thegirlnextdior

      AHHH KARMA

  • CED

    France won a corner with 2:55 of 3 of stoppage time and the ref blew the whistle right at 3. Never see a ref not giving you a chance to take a corner in that situation.

    • BRA 4 vs SWE 0 OLIMPÍADAS

      France better begin today their planning for 2019.

    • x

      The refs have been oddly stringent about blowing the whistle in every game I’ve watched- not sure I’ve seen any of them go 10 seconds past the initial stoppage time determination. Thought it was particularly bad in the France-Canada situation, though, since they won it clearly before time was up.

    • ARED

      You see new things from WoSo referees every day I’m afraid….

      It was even odder because she bothered to signal for the corner, instead of just checking her watch and blowing the game.

  • Duckman

    USA will have a different little team in 2019
    no loyd or hope(good riddance)
    alex morgan will be 30 and hopefully replaced as main striker, she always had to have a partner because she isn’t clinical
    Canada will be a better team by then and the world will be caught up to the US in womens soccer

    • dw

      Hopefully we will have a different team in 2017, if not sooner.

      • David K Anderson

        We’ll see a faster turnover, I’m sure. Oh, Lloyd will likely be in the squad and demanding to be the focus until she needs a damn walker to take the pitch…but otherwise, we’re going to see turnover. Players like Horan, Sonnett, Colaprico, Lavelle, Pugh…

    • Guest

      Krieger and Rapinoe gone, possibly Sauerbrunn ( 🙁 ), Long, Kling, Engen

    • One of a Kind

      Yeah. Solo, Brunn, Krieger, HAO, Rapinoe, Harris, Engen, Heath, Press, Leroux, A-Rod, Kling, O’Hara, and Long will probably all be gone by 2019. I’d expect Alex Morgan to be gone as well since she’s already reached the pinnacle of the sport coupled with nagging injuries. Carli’s play is already deteriorating, but I wouldn’t be shocked if she made the 2019 roster.

      Honestly, wouldn’t shock me if Solo, Krieger, HAO, and of our forwards retired by the end of 2017 to kickstart the turnover.

      • Calci0

        Morgan, Press, and Leroux (who is younger) will be around for 2019. 30 years old isn’t “old” by any means. Sinclair was 29 years old when she was all over the place in the 2012 WC.

        • One of a Kind

          It’s not a matter of age. It’s a matter of if they want to stay another cycle and the prospect of other talents emerging. The Canadian talent pool is nowhere deep as that of the United States. Also, Sinclair is an all-time great that would start for any national side.

          In 2016, both Leroux and now Press are already behind not only Morgan, but both Crystal Dunn and Mallory Pugh for a forward role. One could make the argument that Carli Lloyd is a quasi-forward as well and should be treated as a FWD from here on out. Barring an early retirement or injury, I don’t see how Alex Morgan misses the 2019 roster, so you’d have Leroux and Press already fighting for the 4th/5th forward roles with the unrealistic assumption that a wonderkid doesn’t rise through the cracks. Leroux has shown no desire to improve the last couple of years and Press has already stated in prior interviews that she wants to put her Psychology degree to use. I mean Press could make the roster in 2019, but it boils down to her response to this setback and how many opportunities she’s given going forward. Would Press be content with being a bit-part player for the rest of her NT career? There was a report earlier this year that she was unhappy in Chicago and she’s already dabbled with broadcasting to boot. So yeah, I wouldn’t consider either Press or Leroux a lock going forward.

    • Calci0

      Not so sure Lloyd will be gone:
      “Carli Lloyd, 34, also made a point of saying repeatedly after the US loss that she plans to play in both the 2019 World Cup and 2020 Olympics.”

      As for the world catching up. Well I still think our talent pool is larger and will remain larger than anyone else’s. It’s about picking the right players, and getting them to play a system that works for the team and individuals.

  • Duckman

    Anyone feel pia outcoached ellis this game, yeah they parked the bus, but most teams do it against the US because they have fast strikers that get behind the defense.

    • guest

      Judging from the comments below, I think most people feel Ellis was out coached. The Rapinoe sub alone is indefensible.

    • Kevin

      Of course, but not because of anything Pia did. Anyone would have out-coached JE.

      • Guest

        Sydney Leroux’s unborn child #peoplethatcouldhaveoutcoachedJE

      • Guest

        Reece and Riley Rampone #peoplethatcouldhaveoutcoachedJE

      • One of a Kind

        So it’s a mere coincidence that the US has never beaten a Pia-led Swedish side? Give me a break, you’re better than that. Amazes me how bitter US fans are towards a coach like Pia for no reason.

        • Guest

          There are not many Swedish fans who would claim that Pia has done a good job. I really don’t think there was a lot of tactical complexity that went into Pia’s plan. I’m surprised more teams don’t sit in a low block like that against the US.

        • ARED

          Not coincidence -Sweden’s players suit the matchup, and their tactics usually do as well. So yes, some credit to Pia for this, but does she also get credit for 2011 when her USA team lost to the same Sweden?

          Pia is a a great, positive person most seem to like. But she didn’t win the World Cup with the USA, and that of course was and is the biggest goal. She used simple and conservative tactics with the USA, as she does now with Sweden. Perhaps it suits one more than the other, and perhaps this gives reason for US fans to be critical towards Pia? I agree being bitter is too much, but I don’t expect USA fans to remember Pia as a hero or something….

    • David K Anderson

      Yes, she did…but Ellis set a damn low bar at this one.

  • Anon

    I can’t believe Canada is looking like the gold contender. I would have been happy for anyone else except that band of thugs

    • x

      Pray to Marta.

    • Ashley C

      Is that you, Hope Solo?

    • Frozen Blue

      I would have agreed up until watching them in this tournament, they are well prepared and playing their game plan. I can’t help rooting for them.

    • Guest

      Buchanan could have gotten 5 yellows in that match plus conceded 3 penalties.

  • Ashley C

    Very impressed with Canada. Beat AUS down a player majority of the match, beat Germany with some starters sitting and now beat France. I have to say, Herdman has been pretty good as far as tactics are concerned. I have questioned him before but I think he’s learned some things since the WC from the times I do get to watch Canada.

    I don’t watch Houston play much but Beckie had a lovely first touch and set up on that goal.

    • Guest

      For people that say the USWNT did not play well, I hope they saw the France game also. They were really horrible. With the exception of the two penalty chances, they had no build up or any of the technical passing that they are known for, just booted long balls to Le Sommer which were time and time again unsuccessful.

    • BoatyMcBoatface

      Canada’s surprisingly good play has finally ceased to surprise me anymore. Rooting for Brazillian gold now but Canada’s no joke!

  • Anon

    Omg Marta please make it happen for your team and country…

    • Guest

      The sad thing is her misogynsitic country will never appreciate how wonderful she is. Better off in Sweden with her insanely hot girl

      • Steglitz49

        Marta speaks fluent Swedish and is happy to be interviewed in that by Swedish media. The good burghers of UmeĂ„ still consider Marta “their girl”.

      • One of a Kind

        False. Reports have shown that the Brazilian faithful has rallied behind Marta, with some fans going as far as taping over “Neymar” on their Brazil no.10 jerseys and scribbling in “Marta.” There was also a nice shot of many fans greeting the team at an airport.

        You’re the misogynistic one saying she’s better off in Sweden with her “hot girl.”

  • Donald Trump

    BACK TO NWSL, hahahaha

    • Gary Diver

      Not for a couple of long weeks.

      • Donald Trump

        Why? Is there something keeping them busy?

        • Constant Weeder

          No games. The NWSL is taking a break while the NT is away winning Olympic gold.

  • Guest

    Pugh’s nutmeg pass though

    • Ethan

      And another example of poor refereeing.

  • luke

    Herdman 4 years ago: “bronze Olympic medal is great, unfortunately we have a huge generational hole in our system”.
    Now Buchanan (20), Lawrence (21), Flemming (18), Beckie (21), Zadorsky (23) + sub Rose (17) advance to Olympic SF.

  • Anon

    I am an American who loves the French team and I find it incredibly sad that they screw up every time. What the f is going on there …

    • kernel_thai

      Blame D1. U get 2 or 3 PSG/Lyon matches plus 2 or 3 decent UEFACL opponents. All the rest of their matches r walkovers that r done by the half. Then they go to the NT and European qualifying is a joke. When they finally get into a tournament where every match is tough they just dont handle it well.

      • Ashley C

        While the parity in D1 needs to improve, I think it’s not necessarily to blame. France can hang with any team but their issues come down to finishing and mental toughness.

        • rkmid71

          That’s exactly what consistently better competition does — it toughens you and forces playing more quickly as that’s what is required to win. Technical skills need to be a little better, intensity a little more, thought process a little faster, teamwork more cohesive, etc. It’s the little details that matter when the talent level is close.

  • Gary Diver

    OG16 roster vs WC15 roster

    Again and again we were told by Ellis and the USWNT players that the team was better and playing better soccer than they did last year during WC15. How does the OG16 roster compare with the WC15 roster and is their general play better than last year’s team’s play?

    • Kaley

      I think they would have been better than the WC15 roster IF they hadn’t been hampered by injuries. WC15 had too many geriatric vets on it. This team was stronger but Rapinoe, Lloyd, and Brian all had either major injuries or nagging injuries that took forever to heal beforehand. Even Tobin was mildly injured right before the tourney. And then Johnston and Pugh got hurt during it.

      • Guest

        This team would have been better if Lloyd was not in the starting XI. It’s time to move on. She was a black hole for attacking play against Sweden. Things only really picked up when Dunn came on for Long and pushed her back. She really should have been subbed off the field though

  • Lee

    Maybe this is the Rude awakening the uswnt needs.

  • Gary Diver

    For Rope-a-Dope Soccer Fans

    The open straight up game between Australia and Brazil was ten times more interesting than the ugly soccer that Sweden played today.

    • Lodovico Settembrini

      Sour loser

    • ARED

      And the ugly soccer the Americans played after the opening half or so. They basically removed the little bit of a midfield they had and hid it under the bed by taking off Long and moving Heath to right back, and became mostly a “hit and hope” team for the remainder of the game.

      And without Pugh and Heath on the wings they really were stuck with playing long aerial balls into the heart of the Sweden defense -and Sweden didn’t seem to mind at all, aside from one miscue on the goal.

  • guest

    will ellis get called out live and in print by the us sports media like klinsmann does? or will she get treated unequally because of gender?

    • guest

      she should have to answer for her megan rapinoe decision.

      • Steglitz49

        It was not made by her. It came from higher up in the food chain.

        This time JE only carried one dead-weight passenger. It was one too many.

  • One of a Kind

    The USA lost fair and square. I can’t believe some people out there, including the always sour Hope Solo, are calling the Swedes “cowards” for implementing a counter-attack gameplan. Roberto Di Matteo won the UEFA Champions League with a written off Chelsea side by using one of the must defensively-minded gameplans I’ve ever seen a top European side employ. Parking the bus is not a sexy tactic, but if it’s what works, so be it. It’s as much as a tactic as the “Abby Ball” methods used by the USWNT prior to this year. No matter how hard the commentating booth tried to mask that Carli foul at the end as a potential “offside,” it was a clear foul; Sweden’s goal should’ve stood.

    As the top team in the world that prides itself on a supposed stout mentality, it always amazes me how the USWNT rushes into panic mode once things go awry. It seemed as if every player wanted to be the one getting the Good America Interview on Monday. Also, it’s never “the better team won,” it’s “we didn’t play our best.” In my opinion, this loss can only be good for WoSo. Hopefully Brazil can get the gold on their home soil…Marta has deserved a major trophy for too long!

    • Lodovico Settembrini

      Great and fair comments..Yes, let Brazil win it..Marta already won the CL but I like her to win with Brazil gold in front of the home crowd

    • dw

      All valid, and well written. But absolutely no-on should want to see the beginning of the “park the bus and counter” era in WoSo. Unless USWNT decided to adopt it, in which case we would be absolutely deadly on the counter.

      • ARED

        No busses ever please!

        I’d argue that era already has existed though, with most teams focusing on not making mistakes more than on attacking and creating goals. Which is why Brazil vs. Australia was such a good match, no holding back there!

      • One of a Kind

        Well, I think this loss is good for the sport in the sense that one of the all-time greats could seriously make a huge impact in her homeland if she can get the job done per se. The reaction of the Brazilian players after winning on penalty kicks is/was a joy to see.

        Also, the USA can only win all the gold for so long. The fact that we already had a “Victory Tour” scheduled before the Games even started is emblematic of the issues within the USWNT culture. We need less cupcake games against Thailand and more games overseas where the prospect of defeat is actually there. Why can’t we play a couple games annually in Germany, Brazil, England, or even Japan? All those games would be well attended. I always love when the USWNT actually travels and is tasked with being the villains for a day rather than being the WoSo Globetrotters. It’s unhealthy to genuinely experience the prospect of defeat five or so times within a three year cycle. I don’t think a single USA player has publicly congratulated the Swedes. Instead, it’s the usual jargon about representing the nation and coming back “stronger than before.” Hopefully this is a sign of things to come where victory won’t always be guaranteed.

  • One of a Kind

    On a side note, who is going to call out Ellis for her poor management in the latter portions of this match? Ellis played with 1 CB all game? Ellis decides to bring on Rapinoe, who is literally 33% fit, with her team down a goal over Press? After Rapinoe does nothing but get away with the foul that led to the equalizer, she then brings on Press in extra time, who had an amazing pass to Morgan, but couldn’t find the target. Why was Rapinoe even on the dang roster?

    So in the Penalty Shootout, Ellis has ALEX MORGAN, who obviously doesn’t like taking penalties, set the tone for the shootout? When a player takes more than two deep breaths before a penalty, it’s obvious that player is lacking confidence. She then has PRESS, who she pretty much revealed indirectly is worse than a 33% fit Rapinoe in her eyes, take the all important 5th penalty? I think anyone that follows WoSo even moderately knew Press was going to miss that penalty, yet Ellis had her take the kick over Heath and a lively Dunn. It’s’ a shame for Press because that all but sealed her fate as a player that will never be trusted in “big moments” due to mental frailty. No other way around it now.

    Overall, I don’t get why people are blaming Pia for doing an exquisite job of stifling her old team while the actual USWNT coach has many questions to answer.

    • ARED

      “who is going to call out Ellis…?”

      I think that’s my cue….lol. You make many valid points. My biggest criticism of Ellis comes from her player selection and “style” of play which I feel gives the team far too weak of a foundation and identity, but even if you forget that element there were many odd/poor decisions in this match alone as you point out. Her use of Rapinoe (regardless of her fitness), Morgan and Press (and Lloyd and Heath) in the penalties, and for me the silly 3-back idea putting an anchor on their best player/creator Heath as a right back…..all three of those really are difficult to even fathom, let alone defend….

      The American media will almost surely not question her, let alone call her out. And US Soccer…..? Well, they’re probably writing her new contract with a raise right now. ; )

    • Gary Diver

      “So in the Penalty Shootout, Ellis has ALEX MORGAN, who obviously doesn’t like taking penalties, set the tone for the shootout?”

      It is well known that Morgan botched a crucial PK for Portland late last year.

      • One of a Kind

        Yeah. I wonder whose decision it was to have Alex go first…she looked so nervous taking the kick. One would think Horan and Lloyd would be the first two to take penalty kicks. When a player is THAT nervous to take a spot kick, you can tell that she or he is going to bottle it. Overall, Morgan had a marvelous game and really put in a gritty performance.

  • dw

    The biggest failure for the program ever: So definitely #FireEllis.

    Oh, wait, we aren’t guaranteed to get anyone better. So with the likely pay cut this position will take, it’s probably not enough money to babysit Hope and Carli, which contrary to what most of us want U$$F will actually want the exact opposite. They will want to keep Vets on for “brand maintenance.” That is their modus operandi…

    Actually, that will be very interesting to see how this plays out. Wring the last bit of cash out of this generation in the “Farewell” tour, or keep as many hangers-on as you can in the name of Brand Maintenance??? Tough decisions for U$$F, all of which will have to due with revenue, and nothing to do with the success of the program.

  • ARED

    Many things could be said (and will be), but I think while it obviously is a difficult challenge to win the Olympics after the World Cup it is clear as ever that the USA weakened their own efforts. And of course this does begin with the manager. The use of Lloyd, Press, Heath, Long, and Rapinoe all was pretty questionable both during the past year or in this specific match.

    Lloyd — I don’t believe she should be playing, but of course despite that she is probably the best penalty taker in the world. So she doesn’t go first or fifth? That is her skill set -set pieces and shooting hard (which works if inside 6 yards or a penalty).

    Press — Yes I know, but it’s still just as crazy as ever to see how effective the USA is during the rare glimpses when playing 2 forwards who are both fast and good -followed by the refusal to play that way in the first place. Add that Press is a better CAM than Lloyd, creates danger, gives time and space and great passes for her teammates, and it’s just very odd to see her used in such an odd role as an afterthought.

    Heath — The team’s best player for me, and without doubt the best creator. But spends a lot of time/energy running as an unused option, defending, and covering for other players. Creates tons of danger when on the ball in good positions, but rarely is found by midfielders in those good positions and usually is on the ball in tight areas, or, in the Sweden match she is even played as a defender. Interesting place to have Heath creating -80 yards from goal. Hmm….

    Long — Needed to be included sooner (or, never dropped by Ellis in 2012 to begin with). Still was the best midfielder despite little acclimation time, and still was used as a secondary player. The team suffered in possession and in finding attackers in between the lines or in space the moment Long left the match. Brian is a good player, but Long is better -at least as a holding midfielder in 2016. Heath and Morgan looked much better/happier when Long was playing/passing.

    Heath, Pugh, and Morgan were the USA’s best attacking players on the ball in possession or in attack (creating chances). But Lloyd was still the focal point of the attack and really the entire midfield. Press and Dunn were good options to have but mostly ineffective due to system, and Rapinoe looked a decent option honesty but was obviously limited to 30mins. So naturally Ellis started a match with her and then used her as a temporary sub in a game that went 120 minutes. Hmm….

  • Intended Goal Scorer

    You’ve got to respect Carli for the clutch goals she has made in big games for our team, but I was unhappy because I perceived her as the intended goal scorer in this game. It’s as if we already knew we were going to win and we decided who got to score the goal ahead of actual game play. Oh, sooo arrogant!! I saw our players trying to get the ball to Carli instead of taking better scoring opportunities. Carli also took FKs that Tobin should have taken. You can bet Sweden saw it too. So now we lost this game and are out of the Olympics! Ugh!! I can’t help but love this team still. I just really wish they would stop catering to favored players! I’m rooting for Marta (Brazil) now, although our neighbor to the north is looking strong!

    • Steglitz49

      Why love this useless bunch? Even with the ref team on their side they could not hack it.

      • Intended Goal Scorer

        Come on…., admit it, you <3 them too.