That ol’ comedy of errors defense we’ve come to expect from the U.S. men was on surprising – and disappointing – display in the U.S. women’s national team’s opening Olympic match. France was quick to take advantage of a sloppy defense, hitting the back of the net twice within the first 15 minutes. However, the ladies recovered before more damage could be done. And, of course, leave it to Abby Wambach to pull the USWNT out of a mess.
She led the 4-2 comeback with a header off a Megan Rapinoe corner kick in the 19th minute. Alex Morgan (pictured) equalized 10 minutes later, after chasing down a long ball from Hope Solo and cleverly chipping it over the French keeper’s head. Carli Lloyd, who replaced an injured Shannon Boxx early in the first half, gave the U.S. its first lead of the game with a goal in the 56th minute. Morgan, the 23-year-old heir apparent — a striker cut from the Hamm-Wambach cloth — sealed the victory with goal #4, her second, in the 66th minute.
Playmaker Rapinoe proved, once again, just how vital she is to the team’s success. Nearly every offensive opportunity for the Americans had a Rapinoe touch on it, as she created mouthwatering chances again and again from the midfield. Lloyd also made a great case for a spot in the starting lineup.
The U.S. women, who are going for a third consecutive gold medal, take on Colombia on Saturday, July 28 at 12p ET (NBC Sports Network).
USWNT 2012 Summer Olympics Schedule
USWNT Group Stage Matches
Wednesday, July 25 – United States vs France (NBC Sports Network)
Saturday, July 28 – United States vs Colombia (NBC Sports Network)
Tuesday, July 31 – United States vs North Korea (NBC Sports Network)
Friday, August 3 – Quarterfinals
Monday, August 6 – Semifinals
Thursday, August 9 – Bronze Medal Match
Thursday, August 9 – Gold Medal Match
Photo: © Clayton Addison/ZUMAPRESS.com