US rebound from opening loss, 6-1 victory over New Zealand


Saitama, Japan — After a spectacular defeat in the opening round, the US women’s soccer team vowed to be ruthless against New Zealand.

And they rebounded a lot.

Americans cruised on New Zealand’s 6: 1 route in front of Mrs. Jill Biden at the Tokyo Olympics on Saturday.

With the United States leading 2-0 at the break, Biden arrived in time to see the team clear up the match in the second half at Saitama Stadium.

In the opening round, the United States lost to Sweden 3-0. This was the team’s first defeat since January 2019, marking 44 undefeated streak wins. Americans haven’t been scoreless since 2017.

However, the Americans vowed to regain control of the tournament. Defender Kelli O’Hara said the United States needs to be “ruthless” against New Zealand.

“Sweden was a very good team, and we didn’t do our best, and when you do it against your top opponents, they will punish you. So it’s our best It wasn’t a performance of the team, “said Crystal Dan. “I think I entered Game 2 knowing that I wasn’t really a great team two days ago and I’m not going to be a great team anymore.”

Rose Label got the right pass from Tobin Heath in the 9th minute, giving the United States an early lead. This is the team’s first goal for the Olympics. Despite the lack of goals, the Americans dominated half, unlike the start against Swedes outside their class.

Lindsey Horan scored in the header at the last moment of the second half, raising the United States to 2-0 in the break. It was Horan’s 23rd international goal and her 100th appearance, a milestone for the national team.

Horan called it surreal. Her 100th cap while the First Lady stares at the empty stadium.

“I think my approach to this game is clearly behind my head to win the 100th cap, but today I didn’t want that to be a factor,” Horan said. Says. “I think we wanted to get the job done. My focus was to do everything I could to help the team win. I’m happy to reach my goal. Well, I have fans on the stand. Is also good. “

It may have been worse for New Zealand, but the United States had four unlicensed goals for offside in the first half.

Abby Erceg’s own goal extended the US lead to 3-0 in the 64th minute. New Zealand avoided the shutout with a goal from Betsy Hasset on the 72nd.

Christen Press, who took the place in the second half, scored 80th from the center of the box from the feed from Julie Ertz before Alex Morgan scored in the last few minutes of regulation. Another New Zealand own goal finished the game within the downtime.

New Zealand coach Tom Sermanni said, “Looking, I thought there was a great 80 minutes from our point of view, but unfortunately the last 10 minutes were a bit disappointing at the scoreline.” “From an effort point of view, I can’t blame the players. They shed blood and tears on the field tonight and played against a very good team.”

U.S. coach Vratko Andnovsky has made five changes to the starting lineup he used against Sweden: Carli Lloyd for Morgan, Megan Rapinoe for Press, Elts for Samantha Thavasa, Emily Sonnett for O’Hara and Thiena David. Son started against Captain Becky Sour Brun.

The United States, the World Cup champion, has participated in all Olympics since women’s football participated in the event in 1996. The world’s top team has five gold medals, more than any other country.

The United States also lost to Norway 2-0 in the first match of the 2008 Beijing Olympics, but won the gold medal.

Their enemy at the Olympics was Sweden, who kicked Americans out of the Rio de Janeiro Games in the quarterfinals five years ago.

“I think I was a little more calm and a little more patient with the ball in this game. It would be difficult to chase the gold medal,” Dan said. “So we don’t take anything for granted.”

New Zealand lost 2-1 to Australia in the opening round, making it less likely that Ferns would reach a knockout round on Saturday.

New Zealand has not played since March 2020 due to coronavirus restrictions.

Ann M. Peterson