December 10, 2014
FIT TO BE TIED
Lloyd scores lone goal in U.S. 1-1 draw with China
BRASILIA, Brazil – The U.S. Women’s National Team tied China PR 1-1 in its first match of the International Tournament of Brasilia. Carli Lloyd scored the USA’s goal in the 23rd minute.
This third USA-China meeting of the year was played in front of a sparse crowd (announced at 300, meaning 69,000 empty seats) at the mammoth Mané Garrincha Stadium that hosted seven matches of the 2014 FIFA World Cup, and a sluggish U.S. team had a hard time creating chances against a compact and organized China defense. The USA limited China to just one shot on goal, that coming on a strike from Hang Peng in the 67th minute which produced China’s score.
China possessed the ball well, but could not get behind a stingy U.S. back line. While the USA sent numerous dangerous crosses into the China penalty area, and had five corner kicks to China’s zero, the U.S. only tested goalkeeper Wang Fei on a few occasions during.
After a slow 20-minute stretch to open the game, China’s first foul of the game led to the U.S. goal. The USA took the free kick quickly down the right side to Megan Rapinoe, who drove to the end line and crossed hard on the ground. The cross found Lloyd unmarked and she pushed her shot home from close range to give the USA the lead.
The goal was Lloyd's 57th in internatonal play and gives her 146 points, putting her one point ahead of Julie Foudy for ninth place on the U.S. women's books.
An increase in energy in the attack paid off as the first (and only) Chinese shot on goal went in. Peng collected a long switched pass from the left in the right side of the box and struck a shot into the upper left corner past USA goalkeeper Hope Solo.
Sydney Leroux had a final chance for the Americans' second goal when she powered forward on a counter with a defender in tow. She drifted to the right side of the box and fired a hard shot across the goal that Wang Fei did well to push away.
The USA is 15-2-4 in 2014, 32-8-13 all-time against China.
The U.S. WNT will continue group play in the International Tournament of Brasilia against host Brazil on Sunday, Dec. 14 (4 p.m. ET) and finish group play with Argentina on Wednesday, Dec. 17 (4:20 p.m. ET).