Defending champions, USA have been kicked out of the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup after tasting a 5-4 penalty defeat to Sweden at the Melbourne Rectangular Stadium in Australia.
After an intense 120 minutes full of chances for either team, the game ended 0-0 to travel to a penalty shootout with Lina Hurtig’s winner which saw the Swedes cruise over their opponent.
The first half of the game began with high pressure from the two sides who were keen on booking a slot to the quarterfinals.
Sweden controlled the game with their height to overcome the tactical USA who kept their lines sharp with their timely clearances at the back.
Ahead of the encounter, the USA was tagged as a better side, but Sweden was resolved to come out victorious.
Trinity Rodman kept on tormenting the Swede’s defense with her solid wing play posing a threat getting to the dying minutes.
The first 45 minutes finally came to an end to end it barren.
It was a physical test between the two sides in the second half who were hoping to pull a shock in the game.
Sweden’s goalkeeper, Zecira Musovic put up an impressive performance to keep her side in the game with some incredible saves to end the clash goalless after extra time.
Penalties were the only option to settle the impasse between both sides.
Just when the American fans thought they had won the game, key players Megan Rapinoe, Smith, and Kelley O’Hara failed to find the net as Hurtig smashed in a shot to make history with Sweden.
Swedes goalkeeper, Musovic won the best player award having put up such a performance.