USA vs. Japan: Friendly Is Perfect Opportunity for USA to Avenge World Cup Loss
There were few outcomes more disappointing than when the US women lost in the 2011 World Cup final to Japan in a shootout. They'll have a chance to exact some revenge on Monday when the two sides meet in the Volvo Winners Cup at 7:00 a.m. ET.
Sure, it won't eradicate that devastating loss, one the US women were expected to win and one that would have capped off a miraculous World Cup run after the amazing victory over Brazil.
It was a shocking loss to the point that many folks labeled it as a choke job by the US women, an assertion hard to disagree with when you consider the US women are 22-1-5 all time against Japan.
I'd say it's fair to call that an upset of epic proportions. And seeing as the two sides tied this April, 1-1, revenge for the US women is anything but a gimme.
What is a gimme is a strong performance by Alex Morgan. The young star and burgeoning face of women's soccer in America has netted 15 goals in her last 13 games, a remarkable scoring clip. The combination of Morgan and Abby Wambach gives the US two formidable scoring options.
Now, it should be said that the tournament where the US women will desperately want to exact some revenge will be in the Olympics, on an international stage bigger than any other. But a resounding victory at the Volvo Winners Cup would certainly send a loud and clear message to Japan:
We haven't forgotten that you beat us in the World Cup final. We're gunning for you at the Olympics. Revenge shall be had.
Can you tell I'm pumped up to see these two teams play again?
Japan will return Homare Sawa, who leads Japan with 177 international appearances and 80 goals. She's recently missed time due to vertigo, but I fully expect she'll be a factor in the outcome.
But whatever she contributes, it won't be enough. In a major statement game, the US will win this one 3-1 as the Olympics near.
London, here we come!
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