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pennben

Women's Soccer/Football and WWC 2015

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That was a hell of a game. That's the kind of game you don't want anyone to lose.

 

Seriously.  I wanted them both to just keep playing.  My heart goes out to the French team.

 

Watching the US vs. China right now.  I have to ask - who is the wonderful, fast dynamic team in the USA uniforms, and where have they been during this tournament?

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WOOOOOOOT.  And the US does it. 

 

I really hope they keep that lineup - maybe put Rapinoe in, but let Abby come in off the bench.  It was a WAY more interesting and dynamic team.

 

Also?  Julie Johnston is a boss.  Holy cow, what a great defender.

Edited by SophiaD
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Man, I wish Johnston had gotten that header in the first half. It would have been awesome.

 

This was a much better team than we saw in the group stages. Much better... 

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It's going to be damn near impossible to top the Germany/France game. It's bullshit that it was a QF, but that's just more FIFA nonsense. We saw two teams emptying their tanks and giving it everything they had for 120 minutes, and what a show they put on. Going in I thought France would have a slight edge in play, but they just bossed Germany around in the first half. I haven't seen Germany outplayed that badly in years.

 

Second half was a little more even, with the subbing in of Maroszan being the difference. France might have had a case for being hard done by the ref not calling a PK for them, but if they had finished just one of the many golden opportunities they had, it wouldn't have mattered. And let's be honest, there was no way in hell Germany was going to lose when it went to PK's.

 

BTW, France's coach >>>>>>>> Spain's coach. Spain's douchebag coach decided right after a game is the perfect time to berate a player for mistakes. None of that from Mr. Bergeroo. Instruction later, comfort now.

 

Compared to the first game, US vs China was a bit of a letdown. But a few things come to mind:

 

-Can we keep Abby on the bench for the remaining two games? The offense was a billion times better without her on the field, minus the finishing. She barely played and all she did was walk around against an exhausted Chinese defense. It's embarrassing how much she's declined.

 

-Julie Johnston is a MFing beast. I had my concerns going into the tournament, seeing other young players fall apart on this stage in past WC after having outstanding Algarve Cups, but those concerns are long gone.

 

-Carli Lloyd still turns the ball over way too much, but she is one of the best big game players the US has ever had. Congrats to her for scoring in her 200th cap. And who else laughed when she effed up that statement before the game?

 

-China's inexperience caught up with them. A more experienced team would have figured out how to beat the US' high pressure and turned the tables on them. Too bad their coach is an asshole.

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-Can we keep Abby on the bench for the remaining two games?

 

Is that a question or a prayer?  Regardless, Amen!

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Eric Wynalda just flatly said that the USA team is better without Abby starting.  He also said that Morgan Brian was a better fit as defensive midfielder than Holliday.  I really have to agree. 

Edited by SophiaD
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Well-played tournament Australia!  It just felt all day that Japan was going to find a way to score, and they did, so full congratulations to them.  Australia in 4 years is going to make another statement.. 

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Congratulations to England.  I did feel bad for Canada though, they kept fighting though.

 

Totally cringed from the England keeper and the eye injury, I hope she is ok.  My daughter says when she played on turf in high school you would get stuff from the field in your eyes, that you would have to pick out. 

 

As far as US, I hope Abby does not start.  They need to move on, that was apparent from last night's game.  In addition, the US will have to play significantly better than what they have, to compete with Germany. 

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Oh, Canada (sorry!)....regardless, Sinclair is one of the best ever, imagine if she had support all these years.  I hope that the showing in the past Olympics and this tournament continue the deserved momentum for the Canadian team. Also, so happy to see Diana Matheson overcome injury in time to play in front of her home country.  She earned that.

 

Well-played to England. Hopefully they will get opportunities in their home country as well based on this performance.

 

Here we all go semi-finals!!

Edited by pennben
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Lots of excitement today.  I felt bad for the Canadian team (although I still don't like Tancredi).  It must be awful to lose in the quarterfinals on your home soil. 

 

That said, very exciting game from England.  I was especially impressed with how well the defense rallied in support of their substitute keeper - and kind of horrified by the state of Karen Bardsley's eye.  It looked like someone hit her.  Ouch.  Bronze is another super-star.  I wish there was an All-Star women's soccer game, because I would adore seeing her and Johnston on the same team. 

 

I was kind of rooting for Australia in the first game, but am not surprised that Japan found a way to get it done.  The Matildas should feel really proud, though - they played some great soccer. 

 

On to the semis.  Is it Tuesday yet?

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I'm sad that the WC is almost over. Only 4 games left.

 

I don't normally count weather as a factor in a match's outcome, but in this case, I'd say the insane heat was a big reason why Australia was so disappointing today. Much of their game is built around speed, but it's suicide to go all out in that heat. Thus they weren't able to disrupt Japan's passing game and spent most of the time in their own half. Heroic defending can only hold for so long.

 

That being said, Australia has some really talented young players. This might be the last cycle for De Vanna, but players like Kerr, Foord, and Van Egmond are still in their early 20's and you would think they have 2 more cycles at least. With 4 more years of development and proper support from their federation, the Matildas could be contenders in 2019.

 

When Japan is on their game, they are poetry in motion. It's so pleasing to see them play. No unnecessary roughness, no theatrics, just attractive soccer on all levels. The only team that can match them in that is France. It's a shame for the neutrals that there's not going to be a France/Japan final.

 

I'm not sorry to see Canada get eliminated. I find very little about their style of play that's appealing, and the attitude of Herdman and certain players is extremely off-putting. Hopefully now they'll stop talking about the last Olympics and finally move the fuck on.

 

I do, however, feel bad for Sinclair. She has carried Canada for so many years without a strong supporting cast. It wasn't enough this time. The double nutmeg was cool and all, but relying on keeper howlers and dodgy PK calls to get goals won't cut it at this stage.

 

Canada has a serious problem. If you look at their roster, there are almost no players who are within that prime age of early-late 20's. Most of them are teenagers or in their early 30's. An entire generation of players is missing, and the blame for that has to go to Even Pellerud. He was Canada's coach from 2000-2008, and he chose to ignore that generation in favor of players who are now past their prime. Some of them would have retired by now if this WC wasn't held in Canada. Herdman is trying to make up that lost time by bringing in teenagers, but once the vets start to retire, it's going to hit them hard. I don't see Canada as a contender 4 years from now.

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To be honest, it's hard for me as a fan of the US team to even think about criticizing any other team for their development issues, because well, making sure one's house is in order before talking about neighbors..... We'll all just have to wait and see for the next round and hope for the best.

 

Onward to the semi-finals!

Edited by pennben
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She did it!  Abby is not starting in this game.  Here's the lineup for the USA Team tonight:  Solo; Krieger, Sauerbrunn, Johnston, Klingenberg; Heath, Holiday, Brian, Lloyd, Rapinoe, and Morgan. 

 

Just a little over twenty minutes to go!  #excited

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Why won't the USA ladies score? Please!

 

Ask and you shall receive!!!!!!   GOOOOOAAAAAALLLLL!!!!!!!!

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GOOOOOOOAAAAALLLLL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Kelley O'Hara, you ROCK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Edited by SophiaD
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That Germany pk was bogus. I don't know what the ref was looking at.

This was a fair result though. USA was the vastly superior team imo. Germany never really did more than shoot wide. I think Alex had more shots on goal than the Germans.

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Germany deserved their penalty kick, and as much as I have enjoyed her play, Johnston deserved a red.  She was the last defender and denied the German player a goal scoring opportunity. We should have been a man down. That said, I think the US deserved their pk. as well.

 

I felt better about getting the second goal, I just did not want to win with only the first goal.  Overall, much better play.  But I still have to shake my head over why they are still playing Abby.  And what did Leroux do, not to be able to play?  Just curious.

 

Finally, I was shocked at how Germany played in the second half.  They just looked really down, I'm not sure if they were still fatigued from the other game.  However, I am sure Germany is no slouch in the fitness department.

 

Good going USA, and making it through.

 

 

 

Edited by hope4all
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Hats off to the US. This was, by FAR, the best they've looked all tournament. Thank goodness Jill Ellis has had the gumption to stick with the changed lineup...it's made all the difference. Lloyd and Rapinoe were beasts tonight and holy crap, I can't believe Morgan Brian stayed in the game. I thought for sure she was down and out for the count--I wouldn't at all be surprised if it turns out she actually is concussed.

 

Finally, I was shocked at how Germany played in the second half.  They just looked really down, I'm not sure if they were still fatigued from the other game.  However, I am sure Germany is no slouch in the fitness department.

agreed. Not taking anything away from the US, because they played great, but Germany looked really flat all game, and then when Sasic missed the PK it was all over--you just knew the US was going to win at that point. I do wonder about the physical/emotional/mental hangover from the France game. That said, though, I also thought Neid didn't help her team at all tonight, she seemed really outcoached. Not because Ellis did anything special--she mostly just let her team play, though a big hat tip for subbing O'Hara in--but because Neid didn't seem to make any second-half adjustments despite the fact that the US had clearly taken it to Germany in the first half, and because she should've emptied her bench. Germany had zero spark after the first 10 minutes...at least try to find someone (who's not playing on one ankle) to light the fire.

 

Was anyone else horrified that Popp was still bleeding at the end of the game? Like, damn.

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Was anyone else horrified that Popp was still bleeding at the end of the game? Like, damn.

 

YES. 

 

And: exhale. That was so intense. So good, so effing intense. I'm going to need vapors on Sunday.

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Never, ever, ever listen to a PK on the radio while driving. First, you stop breathing while waiting for it, then you just about drive off of the road when she misses it wide. (End PSA)

I don't usually buy 4th of July American flag shirts for my kids, but we may need to get some for Sunday! USA!!

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I would not have expected this game based on the group play.

 

I call the rope-a-dope strategy!  Look like your on the ropes all tournament, shuffle the lineup, and oof, what a match!

 

 

Never, ever, ever listen to a PK on the radio while driving. First, you stop breathing while waiting for it, then you just about drive off of the road when she misses it wide. (End PSA)

 

That is an important PSA, to add to that, (from a "friend") don't ever be on the stairs when a PK happens (from either side), plan bathroom breaks better!

Edited by pennben
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I'm still wound up by that game.  What a dominating performance!  This was a completely different team than we saw in group play.  Based the early part of the tournament, I've been surprised each time we made it to the next level.  Not any more!

 

Wow, OUR DEFENSE ROCKS.  I can see why they said that defense wins championships...  because it totally does.  This excellent German team kept running into the Great Stone Wall of the USA back four, and just really couldn't get much of anything going.  I was surprised that Johnston wasn't sent off - then again, I was surprised that more fouls weren't called during the second half when the German defenders were playing Hack-a-Megan with Rapinoe.  One of those plays looked horribly dangerous.

 

Popp should NOT have been on the field with blood running down her face.  That was horrifying.

 

Carli Lloyd is absolutely clutch.  There was no way she was going to miss that PK, even if she had to blast it straight through Angerer.  And, wow, that assist, what a thing of beauty.  How cool was it, too, that O'Hara scored her first international goal in the World Cup Semi-Finals?

 

One thing I loved about that game is that when Johnston was all rattled and teary after her foul, Solo and the defenders made it a point to reach out and reassure her, so much so that whatever was going on with her emotionally, she was able to keep playing at a very high level for the rest of the game.  For such a young player, having a breakout tournament, this could easily have made her confidence level plummet, but they all took steps to minimize that risk.

 

Great game.  Now, I'm totally psyched for Sunday.

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Can Solo win the Golden Ball?

Has nobody from Japan or England scored more than one goal?

 

Carli Lloyd needs two goals in the final to tie Sasic for goals lead.

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I just want the US to stay focused.  This was not the final.  There is one game left.  Celebrate tonight and then get back to business, god, no letdown for the final.  Win this! Individual honors will sort themselves out....that's not why they are here.

Edited by pennben
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That wasn't even remotely a pk for Germany. Contact was minimal at best and the player went down more from lunging at the ball than anything.

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Well, what about the Alex Morgan call?  The contact appears to have happened outside the box.  So it should have been a free kick, not a penalty kick.  Granted, Kelli O'Hara later scored, but one could argue that Germany wouldn't have played so desperately and the goalie would have been more focused if they weren't already down 1-0.

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What a terrible way to lose a game.  I feel so bad for England.

 

Seriously.  That was one of the saddest sporting moments I've ever seen.  I want to give Bassett a great, big hug and take her out for the hugest gin and tonic ever. 

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Oh my god, that was horribly cruel.  Oh, England.  Ooof.  No words.

 

P.S  Do not let Julie Johnston watch that, she's got enough of what could have been a nightmare to keep out of her mind.

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That was BRUTAL. Props to whoever forcibly turned the camera away from Bassett immediately after the game ended (it looked like an English player), even though then we had to watch her breaking down on the pitch surrounded by teammates. That's when I just turned it off--it was too much, even though I get why FOX showed it.

 

I'm going to go have a Pimm's Cup and watch mindless TV. I hope Laura Bassett does the same.

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I wish I could hold the entire English soccer team on my lap right now, especially Bassett.  She played brilliantly throughout the entire tournament.  I hate it when stuff like this happens. #stillupset

 

Mind you, Japan might have won anyway, but what an awful, awful way to lose a World Cup game, especially a semi-final.  Ugh.

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What a terrible way to lose a game.  I feel so bad for England.

I can't imagine. Only seconds away from the extra time, and you lose like that. Ugh.

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P.S  Do not let Julie Johnston watch that, she's got enough of what could have been a nightmare to keep out of her mind.

 

I don't think any defender should watch that, ever. Hell, it was hard enough for a couch potato like me to watch. Poor Bassett.

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Alex Morgan was clearly fouled, however. The ref was in a good position and immediately signaled for the pk. The ref was not in a good position on the first pk and blew the call. Maybe it was a make up call. They each got 1 pk. Germany didn't capitalize. 

 

I don't think this is controversial though. The USA played better and earned a win. 

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For those who want to see the USA team's entire progression throughout this World Cup, Fox Sports 1 is going to rebroadcast all of the US games starting at 12 AM tomorrow morning (Pacific Time). 

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That was just awful. My sister and I were gutted... but obviously not more than she was. Afterwards my sister (who played soccer all through high school) just went 'Turn it off. I don't want to see them focusing on the crying girl after that. Turn it off.' I was happy to do so.

 

Talk about a nightmare.

 

I just kept saying 'Girls (to the rest of the England team) take her out and get her drunk tonight. You have a couple of days before you play Germany. Just go out and get her good and drunk tonight.'

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I couldn't post right away. It rarely ends up well when I do right after an emotional roller coaster. I wanted to wait and rewatch that US game before I did.

 

First of all, a complaint. Why does the team that everyone in the US wants to see get the worst commentary team? I like Dellacamera, but Whitehill bugs me half the time with her constant need to bring up her recently ended playing days, and DiCicco is such a Negative Nancy that it's insulting. If he's still bitter about Ellis getting the job over him and expressing that through incessant criticism, then he needs to grow the fuck up. Why couldn't Wagner get the US games?

 

Now on to the positive stuff. Where was this US team hiding all this time? That was the best performance by them in years. After a somewhat shaky opening 10 minutes, they turned it up and dominated the so-called number 1 team in the world. The silly giveaways and passes to no one were nowhere to be found. And when they did lose it, there was always someone right behind to get it back.

-The lack of finishing from Morgan is a clear result of her extended time on the sidelines. But that was the only thing off from her. She worked her ass off and gave Germany's slow backline fits all night.

-Rapinoe was getting hammered with little consequence, but fortunately she kept her cool. The Rapinoe of old might have retaliated, but this version didn't take the bait.

-Yet another outstanding job by the back 5. It's been a joy to watch them stifle everything thrown their way. Gone are the days when all we can do is pray for Hope to save the day because the backline was shaky.

-Johnston has been a revelation this year, but she was very fortunate not to get sent off for a clear DOGSO. A 10v11 game could have turned out much differently. But it's a valuable learning experience for her, and the pep talk from her teammates was enough to get her head on straight.

-I honestly cannot think of a more clutch player in the women's game than Carli Lloyd. Her big time goals come so often that it's shocking when she doesn't come through. I'll be surprised if her name isn't on the scoresheet on Sunday. Hopefully she does so she can lock up that third star and that Golden Ball.

-Silvia Neid is a fantastic coach, but Ellis out-coached her in every way. The fact that her only sub was an unfit Maroszan showed us that she had no clue how to counter what the US was doing.

-I knew Sasic was going to miss that PK before she took it. She was completely unfocused from the very beginning and let Hope get in her head. In comparison, Lloyd let nothing get to her. Didn't look at Angerer or anything else but the ball the entire time. I knew she'd score hers.

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Well done for England, although it seemed as if Germany really was just phoning it in.  You could tell that one team really, really, really, really wanted it and the other was just playing for pride, but, also, frankly, came across as, "Can we just go home now?"

 

That honestly has to be the worst-officiated game I've ever seen.  Not saying the PK wasn't justified, because it was, but I saw at least several other calls that should have been fouls, and at least one card for each side.  I don't care how bored or affronted the ref was - if she couldn't keep her head in the game, she didn't deserve to officiate.   Someone could have gotten seriously hurt.

 

I was also surprised that some of the German players didn't get carded with their continued outcry after the foul. 

 

I also have to congratulate the English defense and Bardsley for some clutch saves.

 

Bummer for Angerer.  Horrible way to end a career, but, hopefully, the sting will fade over time. 

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My cousin and her gf are in Vancouver for the game. (The advantage of living in Portland.). My son and I are green with jealousy.

We've got our (homemade) USA shirts ready for tomorrow, though!!

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Thrilled for England, maybe Bassett can get some sleep now (listening to her interviews yesterday was gut-wrenching). 

 

Trying to remind myself to breathe during tomorrow's match.

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Was she ever a keeper for the US side? I think that she had an international connection hence her playing for England, but I'm pretty sure she never played for the US team.  I'm also pretty sure there are a handful (or thousands) of GKs worse than her born in the US.

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Bardsley played at Cal State Fullerton, but has been playing for England's team since being part of the U-19s in 2003.  I think she's the American-born child of English parents.

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Bardsley played at Cal State Fullerton, but has been playing for England's team since being part of the U-19s in 2003.  I think she's the American-born child of English parents.

 

At one point she was part of the US youth system, but she always wanted to play for England.

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