Home > Women's Teams > U-20 Women in the . . . plane home?

U-20 Women in the . . . plane home?

In an ugly match, Nigeria’s U-20 women sent the US women home:  a 1-1 draw settled by a shootout which saw the Americans’ captain, Christine Nairn (MF, Penn State), and its star striker Sydney Leroux fail to convert on their penalty kicks.

Sometimes the better team loses.  It happens in every sport, but perhaps more often in soccer where matches are often decided by the slimmest of margins.  Nigeria played rough: earning four yellow cards and committing 26 fouls (to the US’s zero yellow cards and five fouls committed).  Still, the US managed 13 shots on goal, but only scored once.  Allowed to remain in the match, Nigeria matched the US in shots on goal and goals.

A common soccer statistic is that roughly 75% of penalty kicks score (one in four).  This match was no exception: on eight total shots, six goals were scored.  Unfortunately, the misses weren’t divided equally among the teams.  Nairn’s shot was saved by the keeper who guessed corrected and didn’t have to travel far to get Nairn’s shot, just to the keeper’s right.  Leroux’s shot just missed high, right over the goalie’s head.

Both the MNT and the Women’s U-20 teams were knocked out of their World Cups this year by African nations in the first round of the knockout stage.  Obviously good to see American soccer represented beyond the Group Stages, but now it’s time to get back to winning in the win-or-go-home matches.

The highlights for the match are here.

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Categories: Women's Teams
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