Sunday, December 3, 2023

Macario, Purce open USWNT accounts as Mewis injury scares Colombia win

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The US Women’s National Team easily beat Colombia 6-0 on Friday night in Orlando, Florida, following Monday’s 4-0 victory over the same opponent.

The pair of matches brought the team’s January camp to a close, which saw a near-full USWNT try to impress head coach Vlatko Andonovski ahead of the Tokyo Olympics this summer (if the tournament were to go ahead).

Here are three of the biggest takeaways of the game at Exploria Stadium.

Catarina Macario scores USWNT’s first goal

The January camp saw the debut of Macario’s USWNT, who obviously is set to be the team’s next big star. The striker born in Brazil, which recently signed with the European power Lyon straight from Stanford University, got his first cap on Monday before scoring his first national team goal on Friday in the third minute.

“Cat is a different type of player than I think we’ve ever had. She’s a different 9th than we’ve ever had,” Megan Rapinoe said of the 21-year-old after Friday’s game. . “She falls a little more, plays more like a false nine.

“Physically, she’s already ready to be at this level and it’s a huge leap for a lot of people to move from college to this level to be able to compete physically.

“She’s going to be one of those fun players that you love to see – someone who’s going to get the fans excited, someone who’s going to come out with something creative or nutmeg.”

Sam Mewis leaves injured

The United States was in great fear when Mewis collided with a Colombian defender midway through the second half. The Man City midfielder appeared to feel significant pain on the pitch after his left ankle rolled under it. She was able to slowly leave the field on her own before being seen on the bench with ice wrapped around her ankle.

Mewis has been in stellar form for the USWNT and Man City. Rapinoe called her “the best player on our team right now” after the game, so any injury issue would be a major concern for the club and the country.

Andonovski said Mewis will be examined after the match, adding that her high pain threshold made it difficult to immediately determine her prognosis.

“She’s very strong and very tough,” said the USWNT coach. “When we first asked [how she was] she said, “I’m fine, I’m fine,” but we do all the exams and go through all the protocol to make sure she’s okay.

“She’s tough and we don’t know what ‘good’ means in her world. Soon we’ll know how she feels.”

Crystal Dunn and Midge Purce have their chance on offense

Dunn and Purce are natural attackers who have been moved to defense with the USWNT. Dunn, in particular, went from a dynamic attacking midfielder to a rock solid left-back who played in the USWNT’s 2019 World Cup race.

Fans have demanded that both players have a chance to attack the United States and Friday night Andonovsky obliged. Purce, in particular, grabbed the headlines by scoring his first USWNT goal with a Carli Lloyd cross header in the 86th minute.

Getty Images

“We know Midge is a good striker,” Andonovski said of a player who had mostly been used as a right-back with the national team.

“Obviously we’ve seen something in her that can help us or help her become a good full-back and we’re going to keep working as we go forward. But when we need a striker, obviously she’s pretty good and she’s shown she can do a good job there. “

Of Dunn, he added: “Crystal has to be the most versatile player on the pitch. I literally feel comfortable putting Crystal in any position on the pitch and I know she’s going to achieve it. the standard set. “


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