USWNT v Germany: tell us the lesson that we should learn

That was a show. At home, against a slightly short-handed German team, the US really shone.  Hope Solo showed how she would have made those saves and we got some long looks at people we’ve looked at for a long time.

Everyone has opinions on what we should take away from this.  Speaking as a US fan, and someone who spends too much time in self-reflection, I like to think about the new things we can discover and learn about ourselves. And I tried, I really did.  But the only thing I truly came away with was how much easier it is to tell the white girls apart when you have an HDTV. (I won’t do player reviews because after reading Beulah’s for years I realized how much everyone else, including me, sucks at them in comparison.)

But what new things did we really learn about the US?  Kristine Lilly is still great, despite conventions of age. You didn’t need a friendly against Germany to tell you that, she’s been doing fine the whole WPS season.  Abby Wambach is amazing; ditto.  Amy Rodriguez kinda runs a bit and makes me confused; check.

So what did we learn about the US Women’s team? Well… not much, ultimately.  We’re still pretty good, we still have vulnerabilities in the back and we still have a goalkeeper who can pretty much make up for them.  That’s precious, really, but it’s not new.  In fact, I’ll contest that the only thing we really learned from this game is the following:

Germany has a whole year to work on making us look like clowns.

Even with some dull defending and Birgit Prinz doing the most amazing Paul Rudd-in-Wet Hot American Summer impression I’ve ever seen, Germany still looked dangerous. Not as dangerous as the Deutschland of old, but there were plenty of times where the US would have been hurting had Solo not been on her game.  They looked menacing even while lacking significant players from Potsdam.  And they have a year to get better.

So what, you may ask? The US has a year to improve, too. They have the WPS. Sure. And they had the WUSA in 2002. Thoughts at the time were that it exhausted players who weren’t used to club and country duty.  Not to mention the nagging concern: can we improve?  Is Lloyd so much better than Lindsey?  Can Lindsey prove herself at the national level? Can we let Lilly go? Are we still doing that A-Rod thing?  And the one where we pretend that Rapinoe is a flank player? She’s like Francesco Totti in too so many ways, can we try her in the center for a bit? As long as she doesn’t spit on anyone? Or kick their legs? (Or get hers kicked?)

Even with a dominant performance, the US still has a lot of questions to answer.  It wouldn’t surprise me if Germany already knows the answers to theirs.


One Response to USWNT v Germany: tell us the lesson that we should learn

  1. Pingback: Cross-Conference ‘Cast – Episode 05 – A Little Bird Told Me « The Cross-Conference Collector

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