Spain blanks US; Americans hadn’t lost 2 straight since ’17

Oct 11, 2022, 1:45 AM | Updated: 2:45 pm

PAMPLONA, Spain (AP) — Laia Codina and Esther González both scored for Spain in a 2-0 victory Tuesday over the U.S. women’s national team, which lost a second straight game for the first time in more than five years.

Codina scored in the 39th minute. It was the first goal off a set piece that the United States had conceded since last summer’s Tokyo Olympics. Gonzalez added a goal in the 72nd.

The United States hadn’t lost two straight since the March 2017 SheBelieves Cup, when the team lost consecutive games to England and France.

“It’s really disappointing, there’s no question about it,” U.S. coach Vlatko Andonovski said. “We have a winning mentality and when we don’t win, it hurts. It hurt all off us. It is a tough moment for us as a team.”

Both teams are preparing for next summer’s World Cup, co-hosted by Australia and New Zealand. The United States, the world’s top-ranked team, has won the last two World Cups.

Both teams also have been rocked by scandals, with Spain missing some of their best players because of it.

The U.S. players are reeling following the release last week of a report on misconduct in the National Women’s Soccer League. A year-long investigation led by former acting U.S. Attorney General Sally Q. Yates found “systemic” abuse and misconduct in women’s soccer.

U.S. captain Becky Sauerbrunn said players were “horrified” by the revelations. Five of 10 coaches in the NWSL last season were either fired or stepped down amid allegations of inappropriate behavior. Yates also offered recommendations for change going forward.

Meanwhile, a group of Spanish national team players recently called on the federation to professionalize the women’s team. But the federation responded by saying the players asked for coach Jorge Vilda to be fired, which the players denied.

The federation made matters worse by asking the players to apologize and ask for forgiveness. In announcing his team for a pair of friendlies this month, including Tuesday’s game, Vilda excluded the players who called for change, among them Barcelona’s Patricia Guijarro and goalkeeper Sandra Panos, and Manchester United’s Lucia Garcia. Jenni Hermoso and Alexia Putellas were not included because of injury.

The United States was coming off a 2-1 loss to England on Friday in front of a sold-out crowd at Wembley Stadium. The Americans have conceded goals in their past three matches, after allowing just two total goals in its previous 19 games.

The United States also was missing key players because of injuries, among them Alex Morgan, Sam Mewis and Catarina Macario. Mallory Pugh was not with the team because of a family commitment.

“We knew that these were going to be two tough games,” Andonovski said. “That’s why we came here, to learn more about us before the World Cup, and get prepared better before the World Cup.”

Spain was coming off a 1-1 draw with Sweden in Cordoba.

The United States won the previous three meetings against Spain.

___

More AP soccer: https://apnews.com/hub/soccer and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

Associated Press

Brussels sees riots after Morocco beats Belgium at World Cup

BRUSSELS (AP) — Police had to seal off parts of the center of Brussels, deploy water cannons and fire tear gas to disperse crowds following violence during and after Morocco’s 2-0 upset win over Belgium at the World Cup. Dozens of rioters overturned and torched a car, set electric scooters on fire and pelted cars […]
1 day ago
Croatia's Andrej Kramaric celebrates after scoring his side's opening goal during the World Cup gro...
Associated Press

Croatia downs Canada 4-1 at World Cup on Kramaric’s 2 goals

AL RAYYAN, Qatar (AP) — Andrej Kramaric scored a pair of goals and Croatia crushed Canada’s hopes of advancing at its first World Cup in 36 years with a 4-1 victory on Sunday. Alphonso Davies scored Canada’s first-ever World Cup goal seconds into the match but the team’s trip to soccer’s biggest tournament will end […]
1 day ago
Fans from the United States cheer for their team during the World Cup group B soccer match between ...
Associated Press

US-England World Cup game seen by 19.98M on US television

NEW YORK (AP) — The United States’ 0-0 draw against England in the World Cup drew 19.98 million viewers for English- and Spanish-language broadcasts, the third-most watched men’s soccer game on U.S. television. The match, which kicked off at 2 p.m. EST on Friday, was seen by 15,377,000 viewers on Fox, the most for a […]
1 day ago
Associated Press

Bradbury wins Joburg Open for 1st European tour title

JOHANNESBURG (AP) — Dan Bradbury completed a wire-to-wire victory at the Joburg Open on Sunday to win his first European tour title at Houghton Golf Club. The Englishman’s 4-under 67 final round proved to be more than enough as his closest challenger, Sami Valimaki (69) of Finland, dropped a further two shots back to finish […]
1 day ago
Canada's Felix Auger Aliassime, right, celebrates with teammate after defeating Australia's Alex de...
Associated Press

Auger-Aliassime, Shapovalov give Canada 1st Davis Cup title

MALAGA, Spain (AP) — Felix Auger-Aliassime fell to his back behind the baseline, then waited for teammates to race off Canada’s bench and pile on top of him. A few minutes later, the Canadians finally could lift the Davis Cup. “I think of us all here, we’ve dreamt of this moment,” Auger-Aliassime said. Canada won […]
1 day ago
Associated Press

Arizona State hires Oregon’s Dillingham as football coach

TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) — Arizona State hired Oregon offensive coordinator Kenny Dillingham on Sunday, making the 32-year-old the youngest head football coach in a Power Five conference. “He brings the energy, knowledge and appreciation of our state and university that is valued by all of us,” Arizona State athletic director Ray Anderson said in a […]
1 day ago
Spain blanks US; Americans hadn’t lost 2 straight since ’17