The Olympic games don’t get underway until Friday but the soccer tournament got well and truly started with a shocker. USA who had a two year unbeaten streak in ladies international soccer suffered a shock 3-0 drubbing at the hands of Sweden. Overconfidence, complacency lack of cutting edge upfront, sums up the USWNT performance. Goalkeeper looked jittery at most. Check out this play after 6 minutes. Goalie Naeher comes out to take the ball from a long way unnecessarily, Dunn deals with it at the end with a great tackle but Naeher already showing a prelude to how she was going to concede the first goal. USA needed more from the likes of Alex Morgan(13) and Tobin Heath(7), but it was their left back Crystal Dunn(2) who impressed the most. Sweden thoroughly deserved their lead in the 25th minute through Blackstenius’s header as they were the most threatening side offensively. Naeher coming out to cut the cross and was beaten to it by the Swede. Timing is everything for a goalie and she was found wanting here.
Best chance to score for the USA on 44 minutes, header which went on to the far post. Impressive was Sweden’s number 18 who was shooting from afar not afraid to take a shot even when it looks hopeless at times. Blackstenius’s second goal for the swedes had elements of luck and lack of alertness by the US defense. Check out number 17 for the USA Abby Dahlkemper(Man City) ball watching. The ball comes a long way from the header from the corner, to expect the goalie(I would be fail to Naehler for once) to deal with it on her own was not wise by Abby. The best goal of the three was for me Lena Hurtig’s header. Here we have USA marking space(zonal marking), for what your guess is as good as mine as there was only Lena in the box with the other Swede far to the left to cause any kind of trouble. Lena disguises the header, faking going to the left then stretching the neck muscles to got right leaving Naehler flat footed. Nice stuff. No time to feel sorry for themselves, the USA can get back into the group with a win over New Zealand Saturday. Australia are second to the Swedes in the Group G on goal difference after winning 2-1 against NZ.