The 2021 Tokyo Olympics have started and the United States women's national team is in trouble. On Wednesday, the soccer team lost to Sweden 3-0 in their opening match, snapping their 44-match unbeaten record according to ESPN. Megan Rapinoe spoke on the loss and was honest about the USWNT's performance.
"We got our a— kicked, didn't we? ... I thought we were a little tight, a little nervous, just doing dumb stuff," Rapinoe said. She went to say that this is not the start they wanted. "Did we expect this result tonight? No," Rapinoe continued. "It's frustrating, and it's frustrating that it's Sweden. They found a lot of space on us. I don't even know how many goals we have given up this whole year. I don't remember the last time we gave up a goal. So to give up three is not great."
As dominant as the U.S. has been over the last few years, Sweden is the team that gives them fits. Sweden beat the Americans in the quarterfinals of the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro. In April, Sweden played the USWNT to a 1-1 draw, which snapped a winning streak that started in 2019.
Earlier this month, PopCulture.com spoke to Julie Ertz about how the team is ready to do some big things at the Olympics. "We've got an extra year with our coach," Ertz said. "That's an extra year to get together and push each other. I think, individually, we've all continued to grow. That has helped the collective as well to continue to play good soccer and keep pushing, kind of, our boundaries as well. I think the excitement is definitely there. Being in a camp right now with the girls, it's a good energy. We're talking about send-off games and Olympic games, so I think being able to use that terminology, you just kind of brings excitement around to everyone."
While the U.S. team is down, they are not out. The squad is in Group G that also features Australia and New Zealand. The U.S. has to win the next two matches in order to advance to the knockout stage. "It's obvious we put ourselves in a big hole, but we're the only ones who can get ourselves out of it," U.S. coach Vlatko Andonovski said. "It's not going to be easy. We've got to get positive results in the next two games, but the fact there is still a chance [means] I know this team is not going to give up."