Good luck today with the blog Sam! What are you hoping to see from the matildas and who are your players to watch for today’s match?
Thanks, Rob! The ABC don’t realise the chaos they’ve unleashed.
But seriously, I’m really hoping to see some confident, high-tempo, accurate combination play.
I think we’ve matched the Americans in midfield, but it’ll be our defence that gets a real work-out: we’ve got two youngsters in Jess Nash and Courtney Nevin who will be coming up against some absolutely rapid strikers like Lynn Williams and Ashley Hatch.
Nevin and Williams actually know each other, though, both playing together for the Wanderers a few seasons ago, so that familiarity might help Nevin navigate this.
But similarly, the USA’s defence might have some frailties. There’s inexperience out wide that Caitlin Foord and Kyah Simon could exploit, while Sam Kerr’s ripping form at the moment would likely see her power over any centre-backs tasked with marking her. Vlatko Andonovski said as much pre-game: as much as they can plan to shut her out, she’s just too good and will always find a way.
My player to watch is Tameka Yallop: she’s been under-appreciated for the Matildas for some time, but she’ll be wearing the captain’s armband for her 100th cap today, and if she’s able to make the same attacking runs from deep midfield positions that helped her score the game-winning goal in Australia’s win over the USA back in 2017, she could be the difference.