80,203 people witnessed the continual dominance of American women. I thought Canada gave the US more run for their money but either way I was still thoroughly impressed. Surfing around NBC, Solo's save reel caught my attention and I felt called enough to break it down the four highlights.
1. Good push up onto the bar and awareness to realize the ball was still in play. I think I'm more impressed by how quick she gets up than the original save. (Maybe because her defense decided to pass the ball back to the shooter for whatever reason.) She gets up using more of her legs than arms, which sounds easy but takes some training to do like she did.
2. (What a tackle by Buehler.) Pretty sure Solo had some brothers she played football with growing up to take this hit and keep going. Also good directing out there by Solo. I like the set up a lot.
3. I had to watch this part about six times because I kept getting distracted by the atrocious defense on the play. I think the Japanese striker bumps Solo off the ball but Solo does a great job of staying on her feet (think "Brick House") and has to see through a forest of players incapable of hitting a ball thirty yards. I love that they're willing to sacrifice their bodies to stop a goal but let's go people. Get the ball out.
4. Such a bizarre play. I don't think Solo was trying to be this out of position but then again she pretty much makes the striker shoot where she wants her to. Sooo.. I don't know. A head scratcher to say the least. I think what the goalie textbook would say is to charge the player after her first touch. But Tanaka takes such a small, controlled touch that she could probably beat a sprinting Solo with another touch to the side... She made the save and that's what matters. Part two of this play she needs to smother the ball what means necessary. I think she gets caught in between trying to go on her side and stomach and her arms don't know what to do, which forces the fumble.
In more y-chromosome-based news, the 2012 Generations Adidas Cup came to a close for U17 and U15 teams. The lowly-publicized tournament will only be remembered in these videos that I had to mute because I don't like the Rocky theme song that much.
Continuing on the goalie tangent, there is a 25 year old goalie named Caleb Patterson-Sewell playing in Portugal for Vitoria FC. With the departure of Diego Costa Silva, the starting spot appears open for the taking. I'm not sure who the front runners are but I've found five goalies tied to the club. The players with their respective FIFA 12 ratings:
Player - Rating/Age
Moretta - 68 / 34
Ricardo - 66 / 36
Matos - 65 / 33
Fonseca - ?? / 27
Patterson-Sewell - ?? / 25
I found multiple sources on who was actually playing for Vitoria so I'm sure some of those players have moved on but it should be a crowded field for the ex-Carolina RailHawk. Here's a highlight film of the goalie. Strong, confident, as any good American goalkeeper is. I'm not thrilled on how low his hands are in his starting position but if a certain Spanish goalkeeper can do it I'm not too worried about him overcoming it.