USWNT Announces Pre-Olympics Friendly Against Old Rival
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The top-ranked U.S. women's team will head to Europe in April to face Sweden as part of their preparations for the Tokyo Olympics where it will try to reclaim the gold medal that eluded it at the 2016 Rio Games, U.S. Soccer announced on Tuesday.
U.S. Soccer said fans will not be allowed at the April 10 game in Stockholm and that it is currently finalizing a second match in Europe to be played on April 13.
Next stop: Swedenvs.
— U.S. Soccer WNT (@USWNT) March 9, 2021
Fifth-ranked Sweden has six wins in 40 meetings with the United States, including a stunning upset in the quarterfinals at Rio en route to its runner-up finish to Germany.
"We want to play as many of the top teams as possible to prepare for the Olympics and Sweden certainly falls into that category," U.S. head coach Vlatko Andonovski said.
"They are proven winners, have tremendously athletic players, are led by an excellent coach and are tactically savvy and experienced.
"We need as many tests as possible like the ones we'll face at the Olympics and these games in Europe will give us that."
U.S. Soccer also said the team has received an exemption from quarantine provided to professional sports organisations and that players and staff will operate inside highly controlled environments at the team hotels in Europe.
Last month, the United States won the four-team round-robin SheBelieves Cup tournament for a fourth time after clean sheet victories over Canada, Brazil and Argentina in Florida.
(Reporting by Frank Pingue in Toronto; Editing by Ken Ferris)