US women make quick work of France

BY foxsports • July 13, 2011

The United States defeated France 3-1 on Wednesday in the semifinals of the 2011 FIFA Women's World Cup, moving into Sunday's final in Frankfurt, Germany.

The Americans opened the scoring early when Lauren Cheney redirected a cross from Heather O'Reilly toward goalkeeper Berangere Sapowicz's far post, putting the US up 1-0 in the ninth minute.

The US took that lead into halftime even though France had taken control of the match.

France's control translated into an early equalizer when defender Sonia Bompastor's 55th-minute cross from the left flank flew over attacker Gaetane Thiney and into Hope Solo's goal, bouncing off the far post and in after the US goalie was frozen in the middle of the goal area, preparing to play a Thiney header than never came.

Despite Pia Sundhage bringing in Alex Morgan for Amy Rodriguez and Megan Rapinoe for Carli Lloyd, the US was unable to wrest away control of the match in the minute after the French goal, with France looking like the team more likely to find a winning goal.

In the 80th minute, a US corner kick made France's dominance moot, giving the Americans their second lead of the game. Cheney's ball high and to the far post was met by Abby Wambach, who headed down and past Sapowicz for what would be the game-winning goal.

Two minutes later, the US sealed the match, with Morgan finishing a counter attack by chipping Sapowicz from 16 yards out, giving the US a 3-1 lead.

With the win, the United States will play for its third world title on Sunday, returning to the final for the first time since 1999.

In the final — it's at 2:45 p.m. ET Sunday at Commerzbank-Arena in Frankfurt — the Americans will play the winner of Wednesday's second semifinal between Japan and Sweden.