• Monday Feb 15, 2016

    U.S. weighs CWOQ possibilities for Monday

    USA's Tobin Heath (pictured) has registered an assist and picked up one yellow card thus far at the 2016 CONCACAF Women's Olympic Qualifying Championship. (Photo: Mexsport)

    FRISCO, Texas -- With one objective fulfilled -- reaching the semifinals of the CONCACAF Women's Olympic Qualifying Championship (CWOQ) -- the United States has another one to strive for against Puerto Rico on Monday night.

    The current World Cup, Olympic and CONCACAF champion wants to win Group A and travel to Houston for Friday's semifinals with a perfect 3W-0D-0L record.

    Head coach Jill Ellis has hinted at giving some regulars a rest against the already-eliminated Puerto Ricans (0W-0D-2L, 0 points) at Toyota Stadium. She might also give consideration to leaving center-back Julie Johnston and midfielder Tobin Heath out of the starting XI, since they have accrued one yellow card each.

    "Certainly looking at fatigue issues, looking rest and recovery and making sure we have a game plan and a mentality that make sure we can take care of business," Ellis said. "That's our No. 1 priority, to get three points and finish top in our group."

    In Saturday's 1-0 win over Mexico, it took the Americans 80 minutes to solve a determined, organized and physical side. Although it hit the woodwork on multiple occasion, the U.S. did not get on the scoreboard until captain Carli Lloyd tucked away the rebound of her own saved penalty kick.

    "It's not one of those matches where you walk away and feel good about it," remarked Lloyd, who has 10 career CWOQ goals, including seven in her last five outings in the competition. "That's the teams here are trying to do -- frustrate us and just get really compact behind the ball."

    Ellis said she did not remember a Mexican side playing such tenacious defense, praising Mexico head coach Leonardo Cuellar by calling him "a good strategist."

    "They were very compact, very disciplined," the 49-year-old former UCLA manager added. "We didn't help ourselves at times, but hat's off to them for a game plan that minimized the space, minimized the goal differential and helped them going into the last game."

    Lloyd felt the U.S. needs to move the ball faster to spread out the defense.

    "When you dwell on the ball and take a couple of touches it kind of starts to become the theme within the group," the Houston Dash star finished. "We can move the ball quicker. It will definitely help.”

  • Champions League

    Related News



RELATED NEWS YOU'LL LIKE

Canada women repeat as bronze medalist at Olympic Games

Canada won the bronze-medal match in a second straight Women's Olympic Football Tournament, beating host Brazil, 2-1, on Friday, before a crowd of 39,718 at the Arena Corinthians.

Canada women fall to Germany in Olympic semis, Brazil next for bronze

Canada will vie for the bronze medal in a second straight Women’s Olympic Football Tournament after dropping a 2-0 semifinal decision to Germany on Tuesday at the Estadio Mineirao.

U.S. women speak on Olympic setback

As Sweden celebrated its stunning upset over the defending champion on Friday, U.S. women’s captain Carli Lloyd could not believe what had just transpired.

Canada women top France, earn Olympic semifinal berth

Canada improved to 4-0-0 in the 2016 Women’s Olympic Tournament with a 1-0 win over France in the quarterfinals on Friday at the Arena Corinthians.

U.S. women eliminated from Olympics, Sweden prevails on penalties

For the first-ever time, the United States women’s national have failed to reach the semifinals of an Olympic Games.