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United States 1 (Lloyd 51) China 0
A header six minutes into the second half by Carli Lloyd kept up the USA's record of never having failed to reach the semi finals in a World Cup.
Germany now await in the last four and a mouthwatering clash between the world's top two teams is in prospect but the Americans should really have run out more comfortable winners on the night against a gallant Chinese side.
USA passed up a glorious chance to take the lead after just four minutes when Lloyd's pass put Amy Rodriguez clean through on goal but she tried an elaborate chip with only Fei Wang to beat and the ball went horribly wide.
The former World Champions continued to step up the pace and the Chinese defence came under increasing pressure as they tried to keep the scores level. Alex Morgan had a shot saved by Fei Want, then Tobin Heath did well on the left to keep the ball in play and trick her way past her marker but her crossed was headed wide by Kelly O'Hara at full stretch.
An Ali Krieger cross was not dealt with by Fei Wang under pressure, the keeper missing her punch with the ball falling for Julie Johnston, whose shot was cleared off the line by the covering Dongna Li.
A corner by Heath was headed inches over by Johnston as the scoreline remained goalless going into the interval.
Any American frustrations were eased shortly after the restart though, Johnston's long ball from deep into the area being met by Lloyd who gave the keeper no chance with a firm downward header.
However the USA could not find a second goal which would have killed off the contest, despite going close on a number of occasions. No closer then when Krieger received the ball just outside the area and cut onto her left foot before unleashing a shot which came back off the woodwork.
China tried to hit back with Lisi Wang having a free kick comfortably saved by Hope Solo and a long range attempt from Fengyue Pang also causing no problems for the USA keeper. One goal is always a precarious lead but the USA closed the game out with few problems and they can now set their sights on the Germans.
United States: Hope Solo, Ali Krieger, Meghan Klingenberg, Becky Sauerbrunn, Kelly O'Hara (sub Christen Press 61mins), Julie Johnston, Morgan Brian, Amy Rodriguez (sub Abby Wambach 86mins), Alex Morgan, Carli Lloyd, Tobin Heath (sub Heather O'Reilly 81mins).
China: Fei Wang, Shanshan Liu, Shanshan Wang, Peng Han (sub Jiali Tang 74mins), Haiyan Wu, Dongna Li, Ruyin Tan (sub Fengyue Pang 58mins), Lisi Wang, Rong Zhao, Jiahui Lou (sub Shuang Wang 35mins), Guixin Ren.
Player of the match: Carli Lloyd.
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