US women rout China 5-0 at Algarve Cup
ALBUFEIRA, Portugal -- Ali Krieger and Whitney Engen did more than defend Friday, scoring their first international goals as the U.S. women stayed atop their group with a 5-0 rout of China at the Algarve Cup.
Christen Press also scored, joining Brandi Chastain, Danielle Fotopoulos and Abby Wambach as the only U.S. players to score four or more goals in their first four appearances. Sydney Leroux also scored for the Americans, who extended their unbeaten streak to 27 games.
The Americans finish group play Monday against Sweden, their first game against former coach Pia Sundhage since she stepped down last fall to return to her native country. Sundhage led the Americans to two Olympic gold medals and the 2011 World Cup final in five years as the U.S. coach.
New U.S. coach Tom Sermanni used an almost entirely different starting lineup from Wednesday's victory over Iceland, with forward Alex Morgan the only holdover. But the changes didn't disrupt the Americans' winning rhythm.
Zhang Rui had goalkeeper Nicole Barnhart in a one-on-one early in the game. But Barnhart, starting in goal after Jill Loyden broke a bone in her left hand during training Thursday, stopped the shot with a body save, sparking a counterattack that Leroux finished off in the 14th minute. It was the second goal of the year for Leroux, and 16th of her career.
Krieger doubled the lead in the 32nd off a cross by Morgan. An own goal in the 47th made it 3-0, and Press and Engen tacked on two more.
Also Friday, Germany's 2-1 victory over Japan moved the two-time World Cup champions into a tie with Norway atop Group A. Norway, which has the edge on goal differential, drew 0-0 with Denmark. In Group C, Hungary beat Portugal 2-0.
Copyright 2013 by The Associated Press
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