Sweden Knockout U.S. Women’s Nation Team in Penalty Shoot (5-4)

As The late Pat Summerall once said after the 1991 NFC Championship game between the New York Giants against the San Francisco 49ers, there will be no three-peat for the defending Champion 49ers after losing on a last-second field to the Giants 15-13. The same will be said for U.S. Women’s Nation team after their sudden exist in the knockout stage against Sweden in penalty kick shootout, 5-4. The shocking loss meant that this was earliest exist for the USWNT at the World Cup.

The Four-time and defending World Cup Champions were dominated throughout the match but Sweden could not convert a goal during the match. The U.S. had some moments in the match by stifling Sweden with a counterattack but could not convert goals either in the match. The U.S. kept pressing in the second half of the match, but Sweden’s goalkeeper Zecira Musovic made some spectacular saves and kept her team alive in the match. The USWNT notched 22 shots and 11 on target –the most they had in the World Cup — but failed to score. During the penalty shootout, Sweden’s Nathalie Bjorn sent her penalty over the crossbar, but Rapinoe followed up and did the same. The USWNT finally gave the edge to Sweden, and it looked like they would pull it off, but Kelley O’Hara’s penalty hit the post, allowing Lina Hurtig to grab the winning spot kick despite Naeher getting a touch on the ball. Sweden will advance to the quarterfinals to play against Japan, meanwhile, Megan Rapinoe played her last game as a member of USWNT while and Julie Ertz is pondering retirement from the team. The 2027 squad will be a whole lot different from years past while USWNT head coach Vlatko Andonovski’s future is very much in question have the team’s performance in this year’s World Cup.

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