USWNT Off to Rocky Start at SheBelieves Cup

Posted By High Press 10 on February 28, 2019 - Last Updated on March 12, 2019

Is it time to re-evaluate the USWNT as favorites for the 2019 Women’s World Cup?

After handling all comers in 2018 (they didn’t drop a single match), the USWNT is struggling. They year started with a non-competitive loss to France, a one goal victory against Spain, and now a draw against Japan to start the 2019 SheBelieves Cup.

Two Blown Leads

The US went up first in the 23rd minute off a brilliant Tobin Heath run led to an easy Megan Rapinoe tap in. Rapinoe almost scored later on a laser beam free kick that hit the post.

 

The game went to halftime 1-0. Japan equalized in the 67th minute.

In the 76th minute, immediately after subbing in (more on this shortly), Christen Press fed a beauty to Alex Morgan. Lead reclaimed, 2-1.

However, Japan equalized again in stoppage time against a leaky and unorganized US defense. The draw is a major disappointment. Despite out-possessing Japan (55-45%) and out-shooting (13/6 to 5/2), the US was looking for some momentum. With England (ranked #4 in FIFA and the biggest threat to the US in the tournament) defeating Brazil 2-1 on Wednesday, the USWNT has their work cut out for them if they want to repeat as SheBelieves Cup champs.

Why Isn’t Christen Press Starting?

We wrote earlier this week about US coach Jill Ellis needing to integrate Press into the attack more. That was evident tonight, as she was an immediate difference maker when subbed in.

Press adds a level of dynamism to the attack the US needs right now, especially with the backline’s organizational issues of late. You immediately notice her on the pitch. She’s a difference maker. She needs to start against England to give the US it’s best shot at winning.

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High Press 10 covers general global soccer stories and news. He / she finds the quality of soccer in Bend It Like Beckham to be on par with u8 rec.

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