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Sweden defeat USWNT 5-4 on penalties in 2023 Women’s World Cup Round of 16

The USWNT has gone crashing out of the Women’s World Cup, after being defeated 5-4 on penalties by Sweden. The game was decided on extremely close margins, after VAR deemed that the ball had crossed the line. Their exit in the Round of 16 means that the USWNT has had to endure their worst ever finish in the Women’s World Cup, after being two-time defending champions. 

Outstanding goalkeeping from Sweden’s Zecira Musovic proved to be the difference maker, after she made eleven sabes to keep the defending champions out. She produced one of the saves of the tournament by saving Lindsey Horan’s curling effort. 

USWNT defeated by Sweden in Women’s World Cup Round of 16 

USWNT vs Sweden
Via Ben Jacobs’ Twitter

Sweden consistently had eleven players behind the ball in the second half, as well as extra time. The match was frustrating for the USWNT, who tried extremely hard to break down the opposition defence. But, some very resolute defending saw them completely shut out as the match went to penalties. 

The strategy was fairly clear from Sweden and their plan worked out in the end with nothing to separate the two teams at the end of two hours of open play. 

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The penalty shootout was as dramatic as it could get. Megan Rapinoe sent her effort over the crossbar, while Sophia Smith missed the target as well. Kelly O’Hara hit the post, and Lina Hurtig scored the winning penalty for her side. 

Alyssa Naeher had saved the initial shot, but the ball went spinning back into the net and a VAR check revealed that it had crossed the goal-line by the finest of margins. 

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Arsh Das
Arsh Das
A music enthusiast, also passionate about football and bringing you the latest in the sporting world every day.
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