300(ish) Words on USA vs Sweden

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300(ish) Words on USA vs Sweden 

The great Carli Lloyd hit a major milestone in yesterday’s match against Sweden. She recorded her 300th cap at the international level, making her only the third player in both men’s and women’s soccer to reach this accomplishment. Quick shoutout to Kristine Lilly and Christie Pearce Rampone who are the other two wonderful players on the list, way to ball out ladies! In honor of Carli, here is a quick 300(ish) word summary of USA vs Sweden:

To honor Carli’s amazing accomplishment, she not only got the start, but also got to wear the captain’s armband for the match. Even though she is in her late thirties, she still plays as good as the young ones and works hard to earn her spot on the team. Speaking of young ones, Tierna Davidson got the start in the backline due to Dahlkemper’s minor injury. This was a perfect opportunity for Davidson to show her worth to the team, and I think she fully succeeded at it. She provided a sense of patience and strength in the defense, which as a whole seemed a little shaky at times throughout the game. In fact, all of the U.S. felt a little disconnected during the game. Passes were off, forwards were called offside, and few chances were created. I expected nothing less from playing Sweden, a top five ranked opponent. The Swedes had a breakthrough in the 38th minute off a lovely far post flick off the head of Hurtig from a corner. This goal ended Alyssa Naeher’s shutout streak and had the potential to ruin the United States’ long unbeaten streak.  Being down in a match for the first time in a long time turned the match’s storyline into “how can the U.S. respond to adversity.” Having this test now is good and serves as a learning lesson for the team. Plus, we would rather face these learning obstacles now, in an international friendly, rather than in the upcoming Olympics. In the end, the game was not perfect. The USA had few promising goal scoring opportunities and a lack of fluidity as a whole. The good news is that we were bailed out by a late penalty scored by none other than Megan Rapinoe. The referee in me wants to say that that foul was 100% outside the box (yet, hard to call in the moment and without VAR), but the USWNT fan in me says that was without a doubt a pk. OH WELL, we scored, the unbeaten streak lives on. Let’s learn from our mistakes and grow for our next match on Tuesday against France! (357 words, guess I’m shooting for Carli to beat out Lilly and become the all team leader in international caps)

Blog Contributer: Jessica Doublesin. Jessica is from Dallas Texas. Her favorite teams to follow are the USWNT and Liverpool! Instagram: @jess_doub

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