USWNT placed with Japan, Sweden, Denmark in Algarve Cup

Carli Lloyd

Photo by ISIPhotos.com

By DAN KARELL

The defending Algarve Cup champion U.S. Women’s National Team have been handed a big challenge in the first match of the 2014 tournament.

On Wednesday, the USWNT was placed in Group B of the 2014 Algarve Cup, setting up matches against Japan, Sweden, and Denmark, in that order. Also included in this year’s Algarve Cup include Germany (ranked No. 2), Norway, Iceland, and China (in Group A) and Portugal, Austria, Northern Ireland, and Russia (in Group C), making it one of the strongest field’s in tournament history.

The prestigious tournament will take place from March 5-12 in the Algarve region in southern Portugal. Kickoff times and venues will be finalized at a further time.

Japan was the USWNT’s opponent in both the 2011 World Cup, which Japan won, and the 2012 Summer Olympics, which the USWNT won. The match against Sweden marks the second time that the USWNT will face former coach Pia Sundhage.

The winners of Groups A and B meet in the final match on March 12 to determine the champion, while the second-placed teams play each other for third, then third-placed teams play for fifth. The teams who will be placed between 7-12 will be determined including teams from Group C, which include weaker countries.

Last year, the USWNT won the Algarve Cup with a 2-0 win over Germany in the championship match. Alex Morgan, who is currently recovering from a lingering injury, scored two goals in the victory.

According to U.S. Soccer, the USWNT has a 52-10-9 record all-time at the Algarve Cup and has scored 158 goals while allowing 54.

Prior to heading for Portugal, the USWNT will face Russia in a two-match friendly series beginning on Saturday in Boca Raton, Fla. and then next Wednesday in Atlanta.

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What do you think of this news? Interested to see the USWNT go up against the best? Who do you see Sermanni calling up for this tournament? How do you think the USWNT will fare?

Share your thoughts below.

This entry was posted in International Soccer, U.S. Women's National Team, Women's Soccer. Bookmark the permalink.

15 Responses to USWNT placed with Japan, Sweden, Denmark in Algarve Cup

  1. Ian says:

    I’d like to see Zlatan sneak into the Sweden lineup. Shave the pirate stash, take his hair out of a bun, and maybe he could pull it off. All I know is the man deserves an international tournament this year.

    • argh says:

      absolutely. but he is IMMENSE. 6’5 of pure SOLID energy.

      1 of the best strikers of the past decade. Only thing he’s missing is a CL trophy and a goal in the WORLD CUP

      i bet he could be called up if Sweden qualify for WC 2018 and still start

      • Ian says:

        He’ll be 36 then. Not outside the realm of possibility.

        On a related note, Ibra just tweeted the following to Cristiano Ronaldo:

        Happy birthday @Cristiano. I have sent your new favourite outfit in the post #DareToZlatan pic.twitter.com/HWNKdq46J5

        It’s a “Dare to Zlatan” shirt. Hilarious.

  2. jrowe says:

    When does the info for CONCACAF Women’s World Cup Qualifying come out?

  3. Ron says:

    If the Algarve Cup is “presigious”, why is it played in empty stadiums?

    • Just a guess says:

      Probably because the people who run it do like no promotion at all for it, it’s in a small region of Portugal that is mostly for tourists and people in Portugal don’t care about women’s soccer partly because their team is ranked #41 in the world, which in women’s soccer is pretty bad. Also, the event is held every year, which makes it less special. Fans who do attend are normally Americans or Europeans who traveled to the region on vacation.

  4. Ron says:

    prestigious

  5. Ulysses says:

    “One of the strongest fields in tournament history.” Well, except for Group C. Missing are Brazil, France and Canada. But, that would make it a World Cup. It’s the Algarve Cup after all.

  6. NATO says:

    THE USA has the best women’s team in the world for the past 5 years now. but why don’t we have the best women’s league?

    I believe at the moment France/Germany have the top league. Sweden is next followed by Japan, Norway, England. Ours is probably somewhere top 5/6

    • Hobo says:

      I’m interested in knowing how you came to the conclusion the NWSL is rated 5 or 6th in the world. Is there any articles or facts showing this? I wold like to check it out??

    • Just a guess says:

      NWSL is possibly the most competitive league in the world. The leagues you cite in Sweden and France have a couple top teams that just steamroll every one else. I think the competition in NWSL is generally much stronger. As for which league has the best top team, not sure, but I’d probably say Sweden or France.

      • EspinDOHla says:

        Same with Japan.
        Almost all the best players (national team) are one the women’s team from Kobe (Sawa’s old team). Tokyo Verde also has some national team members as well. Very entertaining and competitive when the two sides play each other but there is no way that the league as a whole is better than the NWSL.

  7. Hobo says:

    WNT is in a tough group, we know Japan is solid and Sweden/Denmark are always dangerous.

  8. user222 says:

    “..The prestigious tournament will take place from March 5-12 in ”

    this aint no prestigious tourney…. The Algarve 2013 had 200 spectators if that, at one of the USA games…