The hype around the US womens national team finally appears to be waning, even as the Americans beat a resilient Spain side 2-1
The hype around the US at this World Cup finally appears to be waning, even as the Americans beat a resilient Spain side 2-1 on Monday with the help of two penalties. Both spot kicks were scored by Megan Rapinoe to put the Americans through and negate a mistake in the American back line that gifted Spain their goal. The reigning champions now move on to the quarter-finals, where they will face hosts France on Friday in a clash of arguably the two strongest teams left in the tournament.
We showed a lot of grit and experience in this game, Rapinoe said. As we get into knockout rounds, its more stressful, theres more pressure, the games are more intense. It was important for us to stay in it.
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It took just seven minutes for the Americans to open the scoring, and it initially looked like they were on their way to another dominant victory. Spain midfielder Mapi Len took Tobin Heath down in the box, and Rapinoe calmly stepped up to slot the penalty home.
But just a couple of minutes later, the Americans were culpable in blowing their lead. Alyssa Naeher came well out of her goal and passed the ball to Becky Sauerbrunn, who was dispossessed by Spain forward Lucia Garcia. The toe-poked ball ended up at the feet of Jenni Hermoso, who fired past an out-of-position Naeher.
Blindside I got pressed and I tried to play my No6 when I shouldve put my foot through it anywhere to clear it but I tried to play out of it, Sauerbrunn said, taking the blame. She got a nick on it and then Hermoso got it good finish.