America performed its greatest sport of this Girls’s World Cup and it is wasn’t adequate to cease the two-time reigning champions from being eradicated from the event.
The Individuals’ bid to win an unprecedented third consecutive title ended on August 6 on penalty kicks when Lina Hurtig transformed and Sweden knocked america out of the World Cup 5-4 after a scoreless draw.
It’s the earliest exit in event historical past for america, four-time winners of the World Cup.
“Simply devastated. It appears like a nasty dream,” mentioned captain Alex Morgan. “The crew put all the things on the market tonight, I really feel like we dominated, however it does not matter. We’re going house and it is the highs and lows of the game of soccer. So, yeah, it does not really feel nice.”
U.S. goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher fruitlessly argued she had saved Hurtig’s try, however it was dominated over the road. The stadium performed Abba’s “Dancing Queen” within the stadium because the Swedes celebrated.
“We simply misplaced the World Cup by a millimeter. That is powerful,” mentioned Naeher, who efficiently transformed her personal penalty kick. “I’m pleased with the battle of the crew. We knew we hadn’t completed our greatest within the group stage and we needed a whole crew efficiency and the crew got here out and performed nice.”
She praised Sweden goalkeeper Zecira Musovic, who had 11 saves to get rid of america within the Spherical of 16 for the primary time in crew historical past. The American’s worst end had been third place, thrice.
“We didn’t put something at the back of the online,” sobbed Julie Ertz after the loss. “The penalties had been powerful. It’s simply emotional as a result of it’s most likely my final sport ever. It’s simply powerful. It’s an emotional time. It clearly sucks. Penalties are the worst.”
The loss was considerably anticipated primarily based on the Individuals’ listless play via three group stage matches. However they performed their greatest sport of this World Cup towards Sweden, solely to have it determined by penalties.
Megan Rapinoe, Sophia Smith and Kelly O’Hara all missed penalty kicks that would have given america the win.
“I’m pleased with the ladies on the sphere,” mentioned U.S. coach Vlatko Andonovski. “I do know we had been criticized for the way in which we performed, and for various moments within the group stage. I believe we got here out in the present day and confirmed the grit, the resilience, the battle. The bravery confirmed we did all the things we may to win the sport. And, sadly, soccer could be merciless generally.”
It was the primary match at this World Cup to go to additional time.
It was the was the fourth time the Individuals went to additional time on the World Cup. All three earlier matches went to penalties, together with the 2011 ultimate gained by Japan. The U.S. gained on penalties in a 2011 quarterfinal match towards Brazil, and within the 1999 ultimate on the ultimate on the Rose Bowl towards China.
Sweden knocked america out of the 2016 Olympics within the quarterfinals on penalties.
Sweden goes on to the quarterfinals to play Japan, the 2011 World Cup winner, which defeated Norway 3-1 on Saturday evening.
Sweden has by no means gained a significant worldwide event, both the World Cup or the Olympics. The closest the crew has come is World Cup runner-up in 2003. They completed in third within the 1999, 2011 and 2019 editions, and gained silver medals within the final two Olympics.
The end result ended the worldwide profession of Rapinoe, the Golden Boot winner of the 2019 event who’s retiring after the World Cup. She had taken on a smaller position for the Individuals in her ultimate event and was a substitute in america’ first and third video games of group play, and didn’t get off the bench within the center match.
She got here on in additional time towards Sweden and in her ultimate sport and jiffy of motion, she failed to regulate a ball performed in deep, whiffed on a rebound, hit the aspect of the online with a nook after which missed the penalty that might have gained the sport for america.
The Individuals struggled via group play with simply 4 targets in three matches. They had been practically eradicated final Tuesday by first-timers Portugal, however eked out a 0-0 draw to fall to second of their group for simply the second time at a World Cup.
The Individuals seemed much better towards Sweden, dominating possession and outshooting the Swedes 5-1 within the first half alone. Lindsey Horan’s first-half header hit the crossbar and a second-half blast was saved by goalkeeper Musovic, who had six saves in regulation.
Sweden gained all three of their group video games, together with a 5-0 rout of Italy in its ultimate group match. Coach Peter Gerhardsson made 9 lineup adjustments for the match, resting his starters in anticipation of america.
It was tense from the opening whistle.
Naeher punched the ball away from a crowded aim on an early Sweden nook kick. Three of the Swedes’ targets towards Italy got here on set items.
Trinity Rodman’s shot from distance within the 18th minute was simply caught by Musovic, who stopped one other likelihood by Rodman within the twenty seventh.
Horan’s header off Andi Sullivan’s nook within the thirty fourth hit the crossbar and passed over the aim. Horan was on track within the 53rd minute however Musovic dove to push it large. Horan crouched to the sphere in frustration whereas Musovic was swarmed by her teammates.
America was with out Rose Lavelle, who picked up her second yellow card of the event within the group stage finale towards Portugal and has to take a seat out towards Sweden.
In Lavelle’s absence, Andonovski began Emily Sonnett, who was making her first begin for the crew since 2022. The addition of Sonnett allowed Horan to maneuver up greater within the midfield.
Sweden pressed within the ultimate 10 minutes of regulation. Sofia Jakobsson, who got here in instead within the 81st minute, practically scored within the eighty fifth however Naeher managed to catch it for her first save of the event.