Solo Save Gives USA 5-3 Win in Shootout
The U.S. Women's National Team earned one of the most dramatic wins in FIFA Women's World Cup history on Sunday in Dresden, Germany, scoring the tying goal in the dying seconds of overtime while playing with 10 players for more than 55 minutes.
When the game went to a penalty shootout, former WASHINGTON star and current U.S. Women's National Team goalkeeper Hope Solo saved Brazil's third attempt by Diane to give the Americans the margin of victory after they converted all five kicks. Solo is now 5-0 against Brazil, including a 1-0 shutout in overtime in the 2008 Olympic final.
After Rachel Buehler was sent off for fouling Marta in the penalty area in the 65th minute, Solo dove to her left to push Cristiane's penalty kick away, only to have the referee rule encroachment by the Americans. Marta converted the retake to tie the game at 1-1. Brazil went ahead, 2-1, on a goal by Marta in the 92nd minute before Abby Wambach tied the game with a leaping header in the 122nd minute.
Hope Solo's remarks following the game:
On the match:
"Up and down, up and down. Emotional. I didn't know if we were going to pull it out at the end. It started to look grim, but you felt the energy. It's not like we held our heads. But you see the clock winding down and you wonder if this is going to be our time, our tournament. And we fought. I knew Abby would come up big. I don't care if she has two goals or 10 goals. When it counts she comes up big and that's what she did today."
On the shootout:
"I was very confident. It's a hard way to win. It's a hard way to lose. You want the better team to win and I think the better team did win, but sometimes it doesn't always go that way. You never know what is going to happen, but I was confident. We've been practicing, we've been looking good in practice. Everybody was pretty much stone cold. We were ice. I felt like we put them away well."
On managing emotions during the game:
"You have to really manage your emotions in a game like this. I'll be the first to admit that I get very emotional, but you have to be able to contain that. We stayed together the entire time until the final minute, and we put that final goal away."
On the re-taken penalty kick in the second half:
"I was definitely frustrated. I got caught up in the emotions of making that first save. I celebrated. I was excited, and by the time I turned back around they were lined up to take another kick. Again, it was an emotional rollercoaster but we contained emotions and we came out on top."
On the emotion within the team after the win:
"Even when we lost to Sweden, you could feel the energy, you could feel the confidence. Nobody hung their head. We have a great leader in Pia that brought us together. There's something special about this group - the energy, the vibe, the leadership. Even going down a man, even going down a goal in overtime, you felt something. You felt something was going to happen. People kept fighting all the way down to stoppage time. When the clock was winding down, this team kept fighting, and we're down a man. All I can say is that you can't coach that necessarily. It's a feeling, and we play with that feeling."
On her save on the third shot in the penalty kick shootout:
"Going up against two different penalty kicks during the flow of the game by two different players kind of threw me off during the shootout. I had in my head that the first two shooters were going to go a particular way and I didn't try and read it. After that, once I got those two out of the way, I was able to read it and I was really able to just clear my mind so to speak, play my game and read the shooter. I think that was a benefit to me, not to have seen that third shooter in the run of play."
On the play of the U.S. defense against Marta:
"I think our defense played great against Marta. I don't think she was too much of a threat. Yes, she got that goal. That happens, but our defenders did a great job of covering, supporting one another and sending two players to the ball. It was part of the game plan given to us by our head coach, which we all trusted in, executed it and came out on top."