Photo: Paul Rudderow
The USWNT defeated Japan 2–1 on Thursday to claim the gold medal at the London Olympics. It is their third consecutive medal win and fourth overall since they won the gold in the debut women’s Olympic tournament at the Atlanta Games in 1996.
The 80,203 on hand at Wembley set a new record for attendance at a Olympic women’s final.
Delran, NJ’s Carli Lloyd scored both goals for the US.
Lloyd said of her brilliant second strike, “That’s what I do best, dribbling and firing from a distance. I didn’t think. I just kept going and unleashed it. It went in the back of the net.”
Hope Solo talks about that big, big late save.
It was fellow New Jersey native and team captain Christie Rampone’s final game with the team.
Even Lloyd says the no-call on Tobin Heath’s handball in the box was wrong. “It was a clear handball, it hit her arm. That’s just how it goes.”
Forbes calls the USWNT the most compelling team in American sports.
For Slate, the question for the USWNT is “Now what?”
We linked to a report in Thursday’s roundup about the bonus money the US players would receive by winning the gold (splitting $1.5 million from US soccer and $25,000 per player from the USOC), but the story also said as many as 10 friendlies could be arranged around the country is the US won. How do you fancy the chances of PPL Park hosting one of those friendlies after its magnificent showing in the send-off game back in May against China?
Nelson Rivas was given an additional two-game suspension to be added to the automatic one-game suspension for the red card he received for headbutting Antoine Hoppenot last Saturday. Hopponet received a broken nose as a result of the headbutt. I would have given Rivas a longer vacation but the punishment follows the precedence of earlier decisions described in a post on PSP on Wednesday.
John Hackworth said a Wednesday’s press conference, “The fracture Antoine has it not a typical broken nose. It’s more on the side of his nose from what I understand from the medical staff. He was able to play [Wednesday], only with slight discomfort. He went through full training and we hope he’s fine. … Our feeling right now is he’ll be OK.”
Hoppenot tells Chirs Vito that he had visions of the Zidane headbutt when Rivas came at him. “The whole Zidane thing, yeah, there were a lot of references to the Zidane thing. But in this situation, I’m Materazzi, which is not really the guy I want to be. It’s funny.”
Hackworth, Lionard Pajoy, and Bakary Soumare preview Sunday’s game against Chicago.
It is unclear if local lad Dan Gargan, who has been playing much of the season with a fractured foot, will start for Chicago. But Gargan, who has fond memories of the abuse he received from Union fans when he first played at PPL Park with Toronto in 2010 is looking forward to being back. “It was awesome and everything I expected it to be. I got cursed up and down…I have been on the other side at the Vet, cheering for the Phillies and Eagles, and told every player on the opposition they were the worst player,” he said. “I think Philadelphia fans are some of the best fans in the world. I love the fact that they are brutally honest.”
CSN Chicago has a strangely titled article ahead of Sunday’s game called, “Nowak’s absence felt in Philadelphia.” Just who is feeling his absence is not made clear.
The Union have their first piece of silverware, courtesy of their U-17 squad, who won the Generation adidas Cup on Thursday when they defeated Toronto FC 3–2 after penalty kicks. For background on the U-17′s cup run, check out this article from the Union website.
The U-17s were captained by Zach Pfeffer, who had his fourth assist in two games in the final. He says of the tournament, “The level of the games is really professional. It’s a very well-organized event and I think it’s very helpful for my development. Each and every year, players get stronger and there’s more and more competition. As the Union Academy gets bigger, more players want to be involved in that and that pushes our guys to play harder and to be more consistent too.”
The Patriot News looks at the involvement of Lower Dauphin’s Joe Julius and McDevitt’s Connor Maloney on the GA Cup winning team.
Chris Konopka is the latest guest on the Union Sound.
John Hackworth and Sheanon Williams share their memories of Kirk Urso, the young Columbus Crew midfielder who passed away early Sunday morning. Williams, Zac MacMath, Amobi Okugo, Michael Farfan and Gabriel Farfan were all teammates of Urso at the US U-17 Residency program when it was directed by Hackworth.
The league has postponed Saturday’s match between Columbus and Toronto so that the Crew can attend Urso’s funeral.
Bruce Arena has spoken the thoughts of many about the unbalanced schedule. “I think the whole construction of the schedule this year with an unbalanced schedule is stupid. Absolutely stupid. To have a Supporters’ Shield for that, it’s stupid. I don’t know how that ever got through, but I can tell you that most people think it’s stupid…Without a doubt, the way to put together a schedule in this league is home and away. Period. End of story. And if they need somebody to help them figure it out, the coaches would be glad to sit down with the people in the front office of MLS and show them how to do it. We would be glad to do it. Actually, we would probably prefer to do it with ownership.”
Montreal Imapact forward Marco Di Vaio has been acquitted of involvement in the matching fixing scandal in Italy.
Brad Knighton will get his first start for Vancouver against Real Salt Lake on Saturday.
Bleacher report notes that the league-wide attendance average is on pace to better that of the 2011 season, which was the first season the average bettered that of the NBA and NHL.
We mentioned in Thursday’s roundup that a new women’s professional league is in the works with Boston Breakers, Chicago Red Stars and Sky Blue FC the first club’s to announce their participation in the league. David Halstead, owner of the defunct Philadelphia Independence, tells Philly Soccer News that at present his team will not be participating in the proposed league.
“Yes, I am interested in helping achieve the goal of having a women’s pro league in this country – and as 2010 and 2011 WPS illustrated, Philadelphia is a terrific market with great fans and business partners. “However, I really don’t know any particulars about this suggested league, its construct, proposed infrastructure, leadership, direction, or business model. So for now, it is doubtful the Independence would be involved in the league…”
Halstead tells Philly Soccer News in an email that he “could” have an interest in the league “if the business model makes sense.”
The WNY Flash remains committed to Women’s Professional Soccer in the United States and continues positive dialouge and communications with all respectable parties involved in forming a new professional league in 2013. There are still facets of the league that are yet to be disclosed or completed prior to the Flash committing officially, but WNY remain optimistic about the progress that has been made thus far.
You can read the press release announcing the still to be named league here. For more reports based on the initial press release, check out ESPN, Equalizer Soccer, Pitchside Report, Our Sports Central,
A report from Womens Soccer United notes that the unnamed (and unrostered?) Seattle team’s ownership group is led by Bill Predmore, president of Seattle-based digital marketing agency POP.
Asking the question, “Will U.S. women’s soccer gold in London spark a new league?”, USA Today looks at the surprisingly low ratings of the USWNT games in the run-up to the gold medal match.
MLSsoccer.com asks what MLS can do to support a women’s league.
A columnist at the San Francisco Chronicle believes it is up to “obscenely rich people” to step up and back a women’s pro league. “Owning a team full of world-class soccer players should be a distinct and long-term privilege.”
In related news, cbcsports.ca looks at what the Canadian national team must do to ensure continued success for when the country hosts the Women’s World Cup in 2015.
The Mexican national team has announced its roster for next Wednesday’s friendly against the USMNT at the Azteca and it is apparent that they are not messing around, calling up their full squad. The only players missing are Giovani Dos Santos and Carlos Salcido, both of whom are with the Mexico U-23 team that will face Brazil in the gold medal match at the Olympics on Saturday morning.
Jurgen Klinsmann is expected to announce the US roster on Sunday.
Thursday’s initial public offering of shares in Manchester United on the New York Stock Exchange raised $233.3 million, below the bottom of the forecasted range.