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USWNT downs Australia to clinch Olympic bronze medal

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Falling short of its goal of winning Olympic gold didn’t keep the U.S. women’s national team from closing out its Olympic tournament in style.

The Americans defeated Australia, 4-3, in the Olympic Bronze Medal match on Thursday, with Megan Rapinoe and Carli Lloyd registering a pair of goals each to help build a big enough lead that Australia’s late rally couldn’t overcome.

Rapinoe was the star of the first half, scoring a pair of stunning goals, one a goal directly off a corner kick, and another off a stunning volley of a mishit defensive clearance to make the score 2-1 after a Sam Kerr goal.

Carli Lloyd enjoyed a history-making day, scoring the USWNT’s next two goals, including a stunner just before halftime.

Lloyd added her second goal early in the second half, forcing Australia into a mistake and capitalizing, putting a shot through the Aussie goalkeeper’s legs to make the score 4-1.

Lloyd’s second goal marked her 10th Olympic goal, which helped her set a new record for Americans at the Olympics, surpassing Abby Wambach on the career Olympic scoring list.

Australia scored just three minutes after Lloyd’s second goal, making the score 4-2, and the Aussies made things interesting late, when a long-range blast in the 90th minute gave Australia a few minutes to find an equalizer.

Another Aussie goal never came though, allowing the Americans to secure the first Olympic bronze medal in USWNT history.

Comments

  1. Well, let us say that the trajectory of the USMNT team is now pointing upward while the trajectory of the USWNT is definetly flat to down in terms of its trajectory. Why ? Because the Mens team is SLOWLY learning how to play the game. The womens team never learned how to play the game,{they played like Scunthorpe Utd} this whole tourney because that is all they know how to do. Check the roster ! They all come from college, where the level of play is on a primitive level thru out. Then they come to the international level, and because they are superior athletes with tremendous determination and a modicum of skill, they could prevail, mostly because the other countries were ignoring their own women. For example, Real Madrid did not have a women’s team til maybe 2 years ago. Now the other women are patterning their play after the men, but the USWNT have not changed their patterns at all. Technically, they are just average except for Rapineau and Lavelle. They CAN NOT dribble the ball. They just try to blow by people. Have you ever seen a right wing like Heath try to dribble? Hilarious. Just give her room, contain and she will dribble out of bounds on her own. Their mediocre technique and lack of tactical awareness is stunning and it caught up to them. This team has fooled all the writers here because they won a lot. Those days are over. The Emperor has no clothes anymore . All these great defenders we were hearing about let in 7 goals or so. Long balls over the top to the wing so that they can cross it in over and over is college stuff and that primitive stuff is why could not score.There was NO pattern of play at all. The only time they can look descent is when they play a team with a similar ,direct ball setup (Like Australia) and even then, they let in 3 from the run of play.WE need women who can play more street ball instead of women who can do cone drills better than anyone in the world. So Yes, the men are on an upward trajectory, the women are definatly not.

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    • I agree with a lot of what you say about the European Women’s Teams catching up with the U. S. However, the USWNT was capable of better.
      There was a combination of poor defensive selections by the coach, and some injuries from which key players never recovered which lead to the final result. I believe that the top 10 teams in the world are capable of beating any of the other top 10 on a given day. To win either the W/C or Olympics takes a teams best performance in each of the knockout rounds to
      be crowned the winner. What was seen in the men’s Euro 20/21 competition where more than half of the matches went into O/T, will be the new norm in the women’s competition’s from here on in. You can’t have any of the performances from the USWNT like we had at Tokyo and expect to be the Champion. There is little room for key errors, ESPECIALLY ON DEFENSE!!!

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  2. Both Megan Rapinoe & Carli Lloyd, who have had ball-striking problems all year, right up to the Bronze Medal Match, certainly regained their touch in the nick of time. And this was not just to win the Bronze Medal, but to save Coach Andonovsky’s job. The USWNT going scoreless in regulation 3 times in their first 5 matches equaled their previous sum total in all their W/C & Olympic Matches put together. (99 v China, 03 Germany & 07 Brazil). You may remember what happened to New Zealand’s Coach when he was the USWNT Coach for less than a year. A poor show in the Argave Cup, and he was gone. If Andonovski gets sacked, prepare for Julie Fowdy to take over things.

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  3. Say what you like about Megan Rapinoe, but I think it will be a very long time before any other individual scores multiple “Olympico” goals at the Olympics. Actually I’m gonna go ahead and say it never happens again ever. Freakish and good for her.

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  4. I could be wrong, but doesn’t the way the contracts are set up for the women basically guarantee that only a limited number of non-contracted players can be called into any given camp? Must be nice to have that kind of job security.

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    • That’s kind of the way I understood it also. If that truly is part of what kept the US from calling in and playing younger players then it is a travesty. Somebody should shed some light on this subject, as it would put the “equal pay” crusade the USWNT stars have been on in an entirely different light.

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    • Not necessarily, it is just more expensive because you pay the players who are contracted even if you don’t call them in. It would be interesting to see how many contracted players didn’t make the squad, I’d guess not many. Or maybe how many non-contracted players did make it?

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  5. It was telling that Australia, Canada and others included young, new talent for the Olympics and gave them playing time while the US brought in an aging core in their mid to late 30s, and looked lethargic. Australia subbed in teenagers in the 2nd half to give them game experience, as the Australia & New Zealand host the WWC in 2 years. For the US, they need to replace over half, if not more, of the players on this roster. I head Julie Foudy use Covid as an excuse for not bringing in fresh talent, but it seems the other countries were able to work through that obstacle.

    The men’s soccer team eclipsed the women’s soccer team on the world stage in the past couple of weeks. We all know how the men’s program revamped after the 2018 fiasco. The painful truth is the USSF is going to need to adapt the women’s program to refresh the player pool, and that in likelihood means moving away from guaranteed pay only for its top players and towards a performance-driven, incentive-based model the men have always had. There will be resistance, but it is time.

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    • Boy, no love the women here. To say that the men eclipsed the women is just not reality. The women came in 3rd in the world, which is a lot different from coming in 1st in CONCACAF. Additionally, it should be noted that the men didn’t even qualify for the Olympics(I know the criteria are different for team make-ups. It should also be noted that when the women were younger they didn’t always win the Olympics nor did they always win the World Cup. And, in fact, winning both back to back is extremely rare. You main point may be valid, but get your facts straight and put things in proper context.

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    • Ah, you misinterpreted my post. After these Olympics, the women are trending downward. Their roster is full of players north of 30, even 35. That gives them a very short time for rebuild before 2023 WWC. They were shut out in three games in Tokyo, so the vaunted offense needs a retooling. While still a force, it seems some teams are trending upward, and are now at least feel on par with the US.

      They appear to be in a phase that the men were at the 2018 debacle, which forced the youth movement and a rebuild. We are seeing the results now of that transition, with the roster only getting better as they mature. In my eyes, the men are poised for WCQ next month, while the USWNT has a number of large gaps to fill.

      I am not upset about the men not qualifying for Tokyo, because the core of our best young players are under contract in Europe. That to me is preferable. I felt the same way about the GC – the main objective was to build WCQ roster depth. I’ve been to the WWC to support the women, and will do it again. But first, they need to make hard choices and quickly, just like the men did.

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      • I am not disputing your main point; I said it may be valid. What I disputed was your rationale for your opinion. Yes, they are older and they need new blood, but even when that wasn’t a problem, winning both tournaments back to back did not happen.

      • Yeah c’mon here PN! Gary Page did not “misinterpret” anything. You explicitly said that the USMNT had “eclipsed” the USWNT with our two wins over Mexico. Certainly agree with the general ideas you are presenting, but fact is the women are still reigning WC champs and also Olympic medalists. Our fellas haven’t eclipsed sh*t until we prove it our over the next 15 months.

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