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USA make winning start
 Women's Football News 9 Jun 2015
 
United States 3 (Rapinoe 12,78, Press 61) Australia 1 (De Vanna 27)
Two goals from Megan Rapinoe helped give the United States a winning start to their World Cup campaign after being given a stern test by a spirited Australia. 
 
It was the Australians who went close early on with a firm drive from Emily van Egmond but she was denied by a great save from Hope Solo, who tipped the ball onto the bar.
 
That save was made to look even more important shortly afterwards when Rapinoe won a 50-50 challenge around 25 yards from goal and carried the ball towards the edge of the area where her shot took a deflection off Laura Alleway and past a wrong footed Melissa Barbieri for the opening goal.
 
Australia responded well to the setback and thought they had equalised but once again Solo came to the USA's rescue with another tremendous save to deny Samantha Kerr whose volley looked destined for the back of the net.
 
Just before the half hour though, Australia finally made the breakthrough. Caitlin Foord's ball into the area was helped on by Michelle Heyman into the path of Lisa De Vanna who drove a low left foot shot into the corner.
 
USA had a great chance to go back in front just before half time when Rapinoe's free kick picked out an unmarked Abby Wambach but she sent her header wide.
 
The second half started more quietly than the first but when the game reached the hour mark, Sydney Leroux made a driving run down the left and pulled the ball back for Christen Press to sidefoot home from ten yards.
 
The best was yet to come though and it was unsurprising that Rapinoe was to have the final say. With twelve minutes remaining, the midfielder picked the ball up in her own half and drove goalwards, going past Servet Uzunlar and into the area where she drilled a low shot beyond the dive of Barbieri and into the far corner of the net. 
 
United States: Hope Solo, Meghan Klingenberg, Alex Krieger, Becky Sauerbrunn, Julie Johnston, Lauren Holiday, Megan Rapinoe (sub Morgan Brian 86mins), Christen Press (sub Tobin Heath 68mins), Abby Wambach, Carli Lloyd, Sydney Leroux (sub Alex Morgan 79mins).

Australia: Melissa Barbieri, Steph Catley, Elise Kellond-Knight, Katrina Gorry (sub Alanna Kennedy 80mins), Laura Alleway (sub Ashleigh Sykes 83mins), Servet Uzunlar, Samantha Kerr, Michelle Heyman (sub Kyah Simon 69mins), Caitlin Foord, Emily van Egmond, Lisa De Vanna.

Player of the match: Megan Rapinoe.


 
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