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USWNT: Sweden breaks US 44-match unbeaten streak with stunning blowout to open Olympics in Tokyo

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The American women’s national teams fell 3-0 to Sweden in their initial match in the group stage. It was a dominant performance from Sweden that played USWNT across the field. As Megan Rapinoe put it: “We were cleared.” Stina Blackstenius scored twice and Lina Hurtig added a third for Sweden. The USWNT players could smell victory in the air. Blowout was the first 3-0 loss handed to the team since their 2017 defeat to France during the SheBelieves Cup.

Sweden started their dominant game early in the first half and established pressure, disrupted the USWNT, eliminated passing lanes, controlled possession, and it was right in the first twenty minutes of the match. They got through on the left 24 minutes into the game, with Eva Jakobsson firing in from an acute angle to give the home side a 1 – 0 lead.

USWNT only managed to get out of the first half down just one goal, despite being out shot eleven to three and cashing in seven corners. Head coach Vlatko Andonovski made adjustments in the second half and shut down Carli Lloyd and Julie Ertz for Alex Morgan and Sam Mewis. The impact from Ertz was immediate (be sure to check all USWNT player ratings) as the midfielder immediately started playing in midfield, winning the ball back and closing passing lanes in her first appearance since taking an MCL sprain in Kan.

When the team apparently made a small adjustment and connected a couple of passes while disturbing Sweden’s midfield, the momentum was short-lived as Blackstenius scored the goal line in the 54th minute.

USWNT missed a golden chance to get back in the match when Christen Press hit the post and then minutes later Sweden scored their third to put the match away.

During the match, USWNT struggled to ever really get into the game, while at times being amazed and reintroducing old feelings about their elimination of Rio in 2016, creating new questions about the team and their ability to navigate through the rest of the group. . The loss ends an unbeaten streak of 44 games for the United States and the team will try to bounce back from the loss against New Zealand on July 24.

Scoreboard USWNT 0, Sweden 3

Sweden 25 ‘: ⚽ Stina Blackstenius
Sweden 54 ‘: ina Stina Blackstenius
Sweden ’72: ⚽ Lina Hurtig

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