SOCCER

Group F Teams Face Off in World Cup Action

Chile and Thailand can give the United States and Sweden some real compeition, if they can channel the emotions from their shut-out losses.

Photo courtesy of the Washington Post

UNITED STATES vs CHILE

Kickoff for the June, 16 game is noon EST in Paris, France for the matchup between the United States vs Chile. The oddsmakers have the USWNT as the favorite to win this contest against the 39th ranked Chilean team.

After the US women positively dominated the hapless Thailand team in the group’s opening day of the tournament, visualizing a resounding victory is not difficult. However, I think it is not wise to count Chile out.

While the women of Chile did lose to Sweden, being shut out 2-0, it is important to remember that the team held the ninth-ranked Swedish women’s team scoreless for 80 minutes of play. The team will walk into Parc des Princes with nothing to lose and pride on the line. They would not be the first sports team to use that position in their favor.

Will Chile reign victorious with a stunning upset? Probably not, but I do not believe they will roll over either. I think this game might feel a little bit more like a challenge for the United States than the routing of Thailand team, but I look for the USWNT to leave Paris with the win.

SWEDEN vs THAILAND

There is a 9:00 am EST kickoff scheduled for the matchup that pits the Swedish team against a freshly trounced Thailand team in Allianz Riviera, Nice. Even though the Thai team was soundly defeated by the United States women’s team, this contest still has the makings of an exciting game worth watching.

The Swedish women defeated Chile, via a shutout, but do not forget that the Swedes spent 80 minutes of the game unable to find the net. Credit for this likely falls to the Chilean team, but it also shows the Swedish women are not invincible.

On the other side of the field, Thailand still bears the ragged and fresh scars of their record-breaking loss to the United States. A victory in Nice over the ninth-ranked Swedes would permit the team to save face and shock the world at the same time. Oddsmakers are siding with Sweden, and a Swedish victory is a very likely outcome. However, the Swedes are facing a wounded opponent, and a wounded opponent is a dangerous opponent.

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