Wednesday, September 26, 2007

World Cup Open Thread

Germany Wins; U.S. Drops Hope, then Scurrrys

From the Group News Blog Sports Desk

Germany defeated Norway 3-0 this morning
, sending the Germany women ecstatically into the World Cup Finals Sunday.

The United States plays tomorrow morning against Brazil at 8 a.m ET in their semi-final match, available in the U.S. LIVE on ESPN2.

In a shocking move, the United States team swapped goalies for tomorrow's semi-final game against Brazil, putting veteran Keeper Briana Scurry over Hope Solo in goal.

USA Today

Scurry is a veteran of three World Cups and two Olympics, but she has played only eight national team games (seven starts) since 2004. She has done well in those games, conceding only three goals, but with the WUSA out of commission, that's all the top-flight competition she has faced. She last played June 23 in a friendly against Brazil, which had many of its top players but not the exceptional Marta. The U.S. Soccer report says Brazil's shots in that game weren't threatening.

Readers at the Washington Post's Soccer Insider blog are stunned, with many now predicting a 2-1 Brazil win. BigSoccer has been surprisingly slow to react, but we might see more action in the four-day-old thread touting potential replacements for Ryan. Yes, that thread is four days old.

On ESPN, Julie Foudy raises concerns about team chemistry, while Heather Mitts thinks the team may be disrupted without Solo's kicking and distribution skills.
Holy shit!

U.S. Women's National Team coach Ryan says he is doing this for "tactical" reasons. That in his view, there simply isn't any Keeper in the world better than Scurry with her reaction times inside the box against Brazil's ability to get shots off close in regardless.

Holy shit oh my Gods. This is...nuts? Or brilliant. I can't tell which. Holy shit Batwoman. Coach is betting everything.

I'm probably gonna post early tomorrow just to watch this action. Damn.

Previous posts:

World Cup Open Thread.
GOAL! Goal goal goal GOOOOOAL!
Bring your analysis to the comments.

From the Group News Blog Sports Desk still in shock, Jesse Wendel reporting.