After a lackluster performance in their Round of 16 game against Colombia, the USWNT rebounded by putting in a pretty dominating performance against China in the Quarterfinals. The score may have been 1-0 instead of 2-0 against Colombia but the USWNT was definitely a more complete team tonight.
The game started off under rather horribly as Amy Rodriguez horribly shanked a one-on-one chance in the 3rd minute. After trying to score on the outside of her foot and trying to chip the keeper, Rodriguez failed miserably.
Even with the missed opportunity, the USWNT was in control. They didn’t allow a shot to China in the first half and the defense was still holding strong. The only thing, like the rest of their World Cup, was that they just couldn’t finish and score.
Coming into the 2nd half, the USWNT were still held 0-0 by China. While she wasn’t starting, Abby Wambach gave a colorful pep talk to inspire the team.
The talk worked. The USWNT scored their goal just six minutes later. Julie Johnston launched a pass from about 40 yards out right to Carli Lloyd and Lloyd headed the ball just perfectly. It wasn’t a bad way for someone to celebrate their 200th cap.
After the goal, the USWNT changed their gameplay from Colombia and actually decided to go for it and score another instead of letting China get back into the game. While they couldn’t score again, China wasn’t even close to threatening the goal and the USWNT took the 1-0 win.
Now, the team will face Germany in the Semifinals on Tuesday night. Facing the #1 team in the world will be the USWNT’s biggest test yet. While the team played well against China tonight, Germany is no China. The USWNT hasn’t allowed a goal in the last 423 minutes but that may end pretty soon with Germany. The attacking must step up if they want to be playing in the Final.