Sweden Stuns U.S. Soccer in Tokyo Opener, 3-0

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For the U.S. Women's National Team, the Tokyo Olympics began the aforesaid mode the Rio Olympics ended: with a stunning nonaccomplishment to Sweden.

What was expected to beryllium a revenge crippled for the U.S. alternatively was a validating show by Sweden, which dominated from commencement to decorativeness successful a 3-0 triumph during the Tokyo Olympics opener for some teams.

The U.S. came to Tokyo having waited 5 years for the accidental to avenge its shocking quarterfinal nonaccomplishment to Sweden successful the 2016 Rio Olympics. It was the USWNT's earliest exit successful a large tournament, arsenic the squad failed to scope the golden medal crippled for archetypal clip since 1996 erstwhile women's shot was introduced to the Games.

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Yet, it was Sweden that played similar a squad looking for golden and vengence, applying contiguous unit to make aboriginal scoring opportunities. After Sweden received 3 of its 7 first-half country kicks successful the opening 10 minutes, and the U.S. struggled with misclears, careless giveaways, ill-advised crosses and wide lethargic play, the World Cup champions soon recovered themselves successful an unfamiliar and uexpected position: playing from behind.

Sofia Jakobsson sent a transverse to Stina Blackstenius, whose header past diving goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher gave Sweden a 1-0 pb successful the 25th minute. The first-half shortage for the U.S. could person been larger had it not been for a imaginable goal-saving sliding tackle by Crystal Dunn successful the 30th infinitesimal and a diving halt by Naeher connected a heavy onslaught minutes later.

Six of Sweden's 10 shots were connected extremity successful the archetypal half, compared to conscionable 1 of 3 for the United States, which mustered 1 first-half country kick.

The champion first-half scoring accidental for the U.S. came successful the closing minutes erstwhile Rose Lavelle's header disconnected a shot played implicit the apical deed the station successful the 45th minute.

Sweden took a 2-0 pb disconnected a country footwear successful the 56th infinitesimal erstwhile Amanda Ilestedt's header deed the backmost station and the rebound was knocked successful by Blackstenius.

Lina Hurtig's header disconnected a provender from Hanna Glas made it 3-0 successful the 72nd minute.

It was the archetypal nonaccomplishment for the USWNT since January 2019 erstwhile they mislaid to France, snapping a 44-game unbeaten streak. The USWNT besides struggled with Sweden successful April erstwhile the 2 teams played to a 1-1 gully during a affable successful Stockholm, with the U.S. needing a precocious punishment footwear from Megan Rapinoe to propulsion even.

Sweden earns 3 points for the victory, establishing itself arsenic the aboriginal favourite successful Group G. The U.S. present faces what is fundamentally must-win crippled erstwhile they look New Zealand connected Saturday astatine 7:30 a.m. ET.

It's nary longer astir vengeance, it's astir survival.

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