The U.S. women’s soccer team got back on track after a disappointing loss to France over the weekend by posting a 1-0 victory against Spain in a friendly on Tuesday.
Playing in Alicante, Spain, veteran forward Christen Press came off the bench and scored the lone goal for the U.S. to give her team a big lift and, it turned out, the win.
Regulars Megan Rapinoe, Tobin Heath and Julie Ertz were back in the lineup after missing Saturday’s loss, which snapped a 28-game unbeaten streak for the Americans. Their last loss prior to Saturday came in July 2017.
The top-ranked U.S. team had several chances in the first half, but Spain kept the pressure on and held the Americans to just 43 percent possession.
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Press was one of several substitutes who came in to start the second half, and in the 54th minute she took the ball and charged downfield. She busted through the defense with speed and her singular effort from midfield on resulted in a shot on goal that Spain’s Irene Paredes helped knock into her own net when she slid trying to block it.
It was Team USA’s first game ever against Spain.
Saturday’s game against France kicked off the team’s “Countdown to the Cup” tour that will see them play 10 games — including the next eight in the United States — leading up to the FIFA Women’s World Cup this summer in France.
Karen Price is a reporter from Pittsburgh who has covered Olympic sports for various publications. She is a freelance contributor to TeamUSA.org on behalf of Red Line Editorial, Inc.