AUCKLAND, New Zealand — A report from a major US sports media outlet has revealed that the Philippines faced the vaunted team USA in a behind-closed-doors match ahead of the FIFA Women’s World Cup.
ESPN’s Caitlyn Murray mentioned the scrum in her article after the Americans’ 3-0 victory over Vietnam launched their bid for a third consecutive World Cup at Eden Park here.
In the article, exposure was cited as the reason United States coach Vlatko Andonovski put midfielder Savannah DeMelo in the starting XI.
“Andonovski suggested the pick was based on his recent form, including a behind-closed-doors scrimmage against the Philippines here in New Zealand,” Murray wrote in his story.
Team officials have not confirmed this match which turned out to be one of two pre-World Cup test matches for the Philippines here.
The article did not mention the date of the match, but the Philippines arrived here on July 10 and faced Sweden in a friendly exactly one week later.
The Philippines suffered a 5-1 loss to Sweden in the said exhibition, also held behind closed doors, in this city.
The Americans won behind two goals and an assist from Sophia Smith, who made his World Cup debut.
But the game also saw a memorable Vietnam moment even in the loss as goalkeeper Tran Thi Kim Thanh saved Alex Morgan’s penalty late in the first half.
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