May 14, 2011

USWNT Takes on Japan in Columbus

The United States will meet Japan in a friendly today in Columbus, Ohio. The match is scheduled for 6:30 eastern time.

Both teams are beginning their final preparations for the World Cup which will be played in Germany starting June 26. Of course, Japan is still reeling from the devastating earthquakes, tsunami, and their aftermatch. A moment of silence will be observed to honor the victims of the disasters.

These two teams last met at this year's Algarve Cup in March. The United States came away from that game with a 2-1 victory on goals by Megan Rapinoe and Amy Rodriguez.

With the announcement of the team's roster earlier this week, Pia Sundhage's attention must now turn to preparing that team for the upcoming World Cup. Injuries must certainly be on her mind now. Defenders Christie Rampone and Heather Mitts are both battling injuries. Likewise, Japanese goalkeeper Nozomi Yamago is injured and will not appear in either of the two friendlies against the US.

Twenty of the 21 members of the USWNT play in WPS. Three members of the Japanese squad are also former WPS players...Homare Sawa, Aya Miyama, and Karina Maruyama.

The two teams will meet again on Wednesday in Cary, North Carolina.