USA vs France 2011: 5 Players Who'Il Have a Big Impact in Women's World Cup Semi

Kyle VassaloFeatured ColumnistJuly 13, 2011

MOENCHENGLADBACH, GERMANY - JULY 12:  Hope Solo of USA during a USA training session at Borussia-Park on July 12, 2011 in Moenchengladbach, Germany.  (Photo by Scott Heavey/Getty Images)
Scott Heavey/Getty Images

USA vs France is being built up as a David vs Goliath matchup. The US are coming off a mind-blowing victory against juggernaut Brazil, but can they remain focused against an outmatched French team?

France is looking to gain some respect on an international scene, especially since their trip to the semifinals has done little to convince the rest of the world that they are worthy of competing at this stage in the tournament.

Let's take a look at the five players who will likely have the biggest impact in this match.

Abby Wambach, USA

Abby Wambach headed in the latest goal in Women's World Cup history to send the US into penalty kicks, where they eventually took down Brazil. She's got a nagging Achilles injury, which could be an issue given the short layover between matches. It should be a non-factor though, which can't be said for Wambach herself.

Marie Laura-Delie, France

Marie Laura-Delie is a confident forward who could come out and set the tone for the French. She isn't the type to back down in a situation where she and France are outmatched. She's already come out and made statements about not coming into this match to lose.

We could see a goal from her in this match.

Becky Sauerbrunn, USA

Becky Sauerbrunn replaces Rachel Buehler in this match. Buehler is serving a suspension for her unwarranted red card in the quarterfinal match against Brazil. Now, Sauerbrunn needs to step up and fill the void.

The weak point on the US team is in their back line. Buehler's exit is a huge blow, and Sauerbrunn has to ensure that it doesn't make for an edge for France.

Hope Solo, USA

Hope Solo is coming off of a huge match against Brazil. She's a world class keeper and at the height of her game, but with a depleted back line, Solo is going to need to be on her game. She doesn't shy away in the big moment, and we should see another stellar performance from her in this match.

Berangere Sapowicz, France

Berangere Sapowicz sat out against England after getting red-carded against Germany. She's back, and it's going to be interesting to see how France responds to their primary keeper reentering the lineup. Sitting out probably didn't help her, and she could be under fire early on.

Expect the US to test her early and often.