USWNT / Women's World Cup / World

US must win third place for chance to qualify for Women’s World Cup

This was not the way the story of the USWNT and the 2011 World Cup was supposed to unfold.

The US lost 2–1 to Mexico on Friday. (See video below.)

It was Mexico’s first victory over the US in 26 matches and it earned them a spot in the 2011 Women’s World Cup.

It was the first CONCACAF Women’s World Cup qualifying loss for the US women since the founding of the competition. The US must now defeat Costa Rica for third place in CONCACAF and the right to play Italy for a qualification spot.

As has been the case throughout the qualifiers, the US once again started poorly, allowing Maribel Dominguez to score in the the second minute of the match. It was the first goal allowed by the US in these qualifiers.

Carli Lloyd equalized for the US in the 25th minute. Two minutes later, Mexico scored again.

The US spent the next 60 minutes on the attack but could not find the back of the net.

Said US coach Pia Sundhage, “You can’t take anything for granted. We knew Mexico would be a good team and that it would be a good game. Today, they scored one more goal than we did and their early goal made a big different. They got the 12th player, the crowd to support them and they had so much energy. Not only that, when we scored to tie the game, they came back to score right after.”

The US will play Costa Rica on Monday evening at 6pm in a match that will be carried live on ESPN2. The US defeated Costa Rica 4–0 in the group stage.

If the US can again defeat Costa Rica, they will travel to play Italy away on November 20 with the second leg scheduled for November 27 at Toyota Park in Bridgeview, Illinois. The US and Italy have played thirteen matches with the US record being 8-4-1. The last time the two countries met was in 2008 when the US won a pair of matches 2–0.

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