Reporting from Melbourne, Australia
A healthy Rose Lavelle was part of, if not the primary, answer to the United States women’s national team’s struggles during the group stage at the 2023 World Cup. Lavelle is healthy enough to start now, but she will not be available for Sunday’s elimination game against Sweden in the Round of 16.
Lavelle is suspended for Sunday’s match after picking up two cumulative yellow cards in the U.S.’ three group-stage games. Now U.S. head coach Vlatko Andonovski must devise a plan to defeat Sweden without his best playmaker.
“Rose is a great player,” Andonovski said. “She’s one of the best players in the world and not having her is definitely going to change some of the ways we’re going to approach the game, or certain phases of the game. But at the same time, we have great players on the roster that are here for a reason, that are here for moments like this, that are ready and able to step in at any point and time.”
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