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USWNT cruises past Jamaica in second pre-Olympic friendly

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Brad Smith / ISI Photos

The U.S. Women’s National Team looked much more like a World Cup champion in the second of three games in its pre-Olympic tournament on Sunday night.

The Americans found plenty of ways to score to make it a long night for Jamaica, rolling to a 4-0 victory.

Led by a first-half flurry of goals, the USWNT earned its second win in four days at BBVA Stadium in Houston, Texas, and greatly improved upon Thursday’s slim 1-0 win over Portugal.

Needing to make an impact, Margaret “Midge” Purce was one of only four field players to finish the game and gave head coach Vlatko Andonovski plenty to think about when it comes time to trim the roster down to 18 in just five weeks.

In addition to scoring the third goal, Purce moved to the backline at halftime to help preserve the clean sheet.

Six changes to the starting lineup from Thursday’s 1-0 win over Portugal saw Carli Lloyd and Purce grateful for their respective opportunities. They joined Lindsey Horan in propelling the Americans to a 3-0 lead in the first half. Lloyd’s tally came just 24 seconds into the game.

Alex Morgan punctuated the win with a late header to add insult to injury for her 110th international goal.

Apart from the starting lineup, Andonovski opted for more rotation at halftime, bringing Morgan for Lloyd, Lynn Williams for Crystal Dunn, and Kristie Mewis for Catarina Macario.

Eventually, Sophia Smith and Andi Sullivan came on but none of the substitutions managed to impact the game in the second half apart from Morgan. The Americans looked more than satisfied with slowing the game down and protecting a third-straight clean sheet to close it out, with the exception of Morgan’s opportunity being too good to pass upon.

One area of possible concern arose in the first half, though. Star midfielder Rose Lavelle picked up an injury at some point. It became apparent she was fighting through it and made the medical staff aware before walking straight to the locker room on her own power in the 32nd minute. Samantha Mewis replaced her and finished the game for a long substitution shift.

The USWNT finishes its June flurry of friendlies in Austin on Wednesday against Nigeria before hosting a pair of friendlies in July ahead of the Olympics.

Comments

  1. who are the 18? lots of good choices. much better service last night and the goals came becasue of it. Different challenge than Portugal, but the biggest difference was the quality of the service throughout the night vs. the game against Portugal.

    Reply
  2. Jamaica is a good Olympic Warm-Up Match for the USWNT, because they are such a BIG Athletic Team. If you can score against them, you will be able to score against the BIG Teams in the Olympics like Sweden and the Netherlands. Big very athletics people can make GOOD Defenders in Soccer. But only a lot of practice and coaching can make a player a real scoring threat. Typically you can measure the top 10 teams in the world by the competency of their forward line.

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    • Morgan’s goal, her movement and all the subtleties, a clinic. The Dutch and Swedes are much better organized defensively with their ‘big’ players and defend the flanks much better, and dangerous with their front lines whereas Jamaica was not in any of those last night. Purce’s goal, Press’ PK, even Carli’s were weakside breakdowns by Jamaica, terrible defending, where players just ran by them with no resistance on 2 of them, with no defensive close or anything, and rightly punished. Jamaica are better all the time, and coming out of covid with so little action didn’t help them it appears, but good defenders offer more than size, and front lines would be the first to say so don’t you think?

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      • BB – there is also a lot of agility with the Jamaica side. However, they simply haven’t practiced enough together
        to be able to sustain any sort of consistent play. However, it is good for the U S players to have to scrum with them for lose balls so as to get use to that when they meet Sweden. BTW, Lavelle’s injury appeared to be just a strain. There was no contact as it was just an awkward movement that was just a little too much.

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