The USWNT tied Germany 1-1 on Saturday night in the fifth match of the post-Olympics Fan Tribute Tour.
Here are three thoughts from the match.
The U.S. looked like it hadn’t played together in a month
There were a number of signs that the long stretches between matches with little training is starting to take the edge off the USWNT.
In the first half, the U.S. went long stretches without any good combination play and the defense was shaky early on against a peppy German attack.
The U.S.’ passing was also poor in the first half with soft back passes, passes that sent teammates into rough challenges, poor defensive marking and little service to the forwards.
Still, there were moments of brilliance from the USWNT
Despite the relatively poor first half, the U.S. did improve markedly in the second half and had multiple moments in both halves when their quality shone through.
Tobin Heath created the U.S.’ lone goal through great defensive effort in the fourth minute of the match. After getting beat on the dribble, Heath immediately recovered, won the ball back, laid it off to Lauren Cheney who found Alex Morgan in space. Morgan’s shot was driven low post and Abby Wambach snuck in behind the German defense to knock it home.
In the 53rd minute, Heath had a ridiculous full-volleyed flick with the outside of her boot to create a good chance for the U.S., a chance that easily could have resulted in a penalty for the U.S. as Abby Wambach was taken down right in front of the German goal.
Heather O’Reilly also had a particularly good game creating a good chance in the 48th minute with a nice flick to Carli Lloyd which put Lloyd in behind the defense. Throughout the night, even though she only played the second half, O’Reilly was active, did well in possession and created several chances for the U.S.
Hope Solo also had a top notch save in the 63rd minute when the Germans managed to get in behind the American defense. Solo came off her line and did well to get down to stuff the German chance.
1-1 was a fair result
Despite the fact that the U.S besieged the German goal for long stretches of the second half, the Germans also missed their fair share of chances.
Besides Solo’s big second-half save, the Germans missed three other gilt-edge chances wide, including one absolute sitter midway through the first half.
John D. Halloran