Is it just us, or does any one else wish the clash of the two best teams was happening in the FINAL match instead of a quarterfinal match? To have the host country's team play against one of the most fan-supported teams in the tournament means this stadium on Friday is going to be AMPED UP in all the best ways.
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Eugenie Le Sommer, Amadine Henry and Wendi Renard have been stepping up in crucial moments leading France up to this game. Most of their games have been won by one-goal margins with the exception of their 4-0 win against Korea in the beginning of the tournament. Their most recent game against Brazil left France a little shaky, in need of some creativity on the field and with hopefully a sense of urgency to step up.
USA didn't have the best of their most recent game either. After scoring an incredible 18 goals in the group stages, they came to face Spain with what looked like a pressured and tired US Team. Spain payed a very physical and pressure-filled game even when losing 2-1. The US line-up was a little out of sorts with Lindsey Horan sitting and some key payers like Julie Johnson moved up and out of regular position. They got the win, but it wasn't their most impressive performance of the tournament.
It's going to come down to how each team approaches this wish-it-was-the-final game on Friday. A physical US defense may shut down France's attacking forwards like the game against Brazil did. But a huge component to the outcome of this game will be if Jill Ellis can get this starting line up right. Seeing Horan back in the midfield and perhaps some better substitutions at more ideal times with ensure a US team that has the confidence and style of play that they did for the group stages. France does have the talent in their line up to make it happen, but will need to be spot on and perfect, pressuring every US position possible.
One thing we are SURE of is that the stadium on Friday is going to be absolutely BONKERS. Yes, it will be all red, white and blue given the two teams, but the rivalry is going to be epic.
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