Monday, 16 September, 2019

USWNT celebrations against Thailand

U.S. women's soccer Enlarge Image Alex Morgan center celebrates her goal with Kelley O'Hara and Lindsey Horan. Getty Images
Cary Erickson | 12 June, 2019, 23:24

The U.S. women's soccer team is 1-0 at the World Cup after a really big win. Make no mistake, the United States of America are the favourites to win a fourth World Cup for a reason, they have the best squad, more depth, more options and in Alex Morgan, arguably the best player at the tournament.

"We have to look at the group stage as every goal counts and it was important for us to continue to go", said Morgan.

One TV commentator said the win was so comprehensive that the U.S. should have stopped attacking late in the game, when the result wasn't in doubt.

Ex-USA worldwide Abby Wambach has defended her former team-mates, insisting they "should be excited" to score at a World Cup, but Kyle's fellow TSN pundits Clare Rustad and Diana Matheson felt Jill Ellis' side crossed a line.

"I did say I thought it was excessive and disrespectful the goal celebrations of the American team once the score hit 8-0".

"We also believe we have more to do".

"A classless victor is worse than a sore loser, regardless of gender", said one tweet. "This is the World Cup, not a rec league tournament", she wrote.

US coach Jill Ellis hit back at suggestions her players could have eased up and spared 34th-ranked Thailand complete humiliation.

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"This is a world championship, so every team here has been fantastic to get to this point. To be respectful to opponents is to play hard against opponents", said Ellis.

Not that Thailand are necessarily minnows, as they sit 34th in the Federation Internationale de Football Association rankings, higher than six other sides competing at this World Cup. "We always want to have any world record and anything we can get over the Germans, we'll take it".

Who could have guessed that a storyline coming out of the Women's World Cup would be celebrations?

Thailand boss Nuengrutai Srathongvian said: "We accept the score today". What is the right way to celebrate a 13-0 win?

The players went off for around 40 minutes in the second half with the game goalless before Sweden secured victory thanks to late goals by Kosovare Asllani and substitute Madelen Janogy.

The Americans play No. 39 Chile in Paris on Sunday.

All the Group B marbles will be on the line as Germany seek to underline their status as favorites to finish first against Spain.

Nigeria and South Korea clash in Grenoble on Wednesday (1300 GMT) with both looking to bounce back from their opening defeats.