U.S. women make their own luck to reach World Cup final

You need a little luck in the World Cup. That’s what you heard from Germany … Germany’s men, anyway, after the World Cup final last year. Germany’s women, on the other hand, were not so lucky against the USA in the World Cup semifinal tonight. A couple of close officiating decisions went against them. Playing the USA so soon after dragging themselves to a grueling win over France is less than ideal. So can you take anything away from the U.S. women tonight? No. Not a damn thing. They earned this. I joked on Twitter tonight that the USA had … Continue reading U.S. women make their own luck to reach World Cup final

U.S. women in the World Cup semifinals: Decisions, decisions

Jill Ellis made three lineup changes for Friday’s quarterfinal win against China, two out of necessity. The result: Still just a 1-0 win against a team that had little attacking punch, but the team looked better and felt better. And it was the kind of performance U.S. fans had wanted to see. Amy Rodriguez was buzzing around making things difficult for China, Alex Morgan was a looming threat, and Carli Lloyd was unleashed. Not that the trio was perfect — A-Rod shanked a great chance like a beginning golfer, Morgan didn’t quite have the scoring touch, and Lloyd had a … Continue reading U.S. women in the World Cup semifinals: Decisions, decisions

On the Women’s World Cup and Hope Solo, in that order

What a World Cup we’ve seen so far! – Stunning upsets: Nigeria tying Sweden, Norway tying Germany (this isn’t 1995), and Colombia over France. – Moments of brilliance: Colombian keeper Sandra Sepulveda, the sequence leading to Karla Villalobos’ equalizer for Costa Rica against South Korea, and this free kick from Norway’s Maren Mjelde that couldn’t have been placed any better if she stood at the post with a stepladder: – Overwhelming media coverage: Fox has gone all out to demonstrate that the next several men’s and women’s World Cups will be in good hands. Former rights-holder ESPN is also ramped up, matching or even surpassing … Continue reading On the Women’s World Cup and Hope Solo, in that order

Hope Solo and the timing of bad news: Q-and-EG

Questions and educated guesses on the Hope Solo situation: Q. Why did ESPN air a piece on Hope Solo, with extensive comments from a family member with whom she fought, the day before the USA was due to play its first World Cup game? EG: Because Solo has been receiving a lot of favorable press and sympathetic interviews that have allowed her to give her side of the story, painting herself as “a victim of domestic violence” who suffered a concussion in the scuffle with family members a year ago. She was on Good Morning America, and she was in a … Continue reading Hope Solo and the timing of bad news: Q-and-EG

Quick Breakers-Spirit thoughts

Take the internationals off two of the top teams in the NWSL, and what do you get? A Breakers team trying to shut down Crystal Dunn by any legal means necessary and sneak one on the counterattack. And to Boston’s credit, it more or less worked. Sure, the Spirit outshot the Breakers 16-8, and Boston’s Jami Kranich made eight saves to Kelsey Wys’ one. But Kranich didn’t really have to stand on her head in this one. Her best save may have been on Christine Nairn’s 45-yard on-target effort, though she gave up a rebound that could’ve been dangerous. Kranich … Continue reading Quick Breakers-Spirit thoughts