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Scouting Sweden and Norway

Jun 13, 2012, 10:07 AM EDT

I just finished scouting the Norway – Sweden game which surprisingly was 4-1 to Norway when I left with about 25 minutes to go. Norway looked much better than when we played them in Spain in March. They are in the middle of their season, so their form was good and they look very organized and physically fit. Sweden has about 7-8 new players from when I saw them in Spain, and weren’t quite as sharp on the day as Norway were. Both teams are extremely dangerous and can cause us problems if we are not prepared to play.

Training went well today except for the fact that we lost Meredith Speck from Yale for the rest of the tournament. She fractured her collarbone in training this morning, and it was confirmed by x-rays this afternoon. I feel so bad for Meredith as it’s her first time to be called into camp, and she gets and injury before the games even begin. However, she’s shown well in training, and she is young so I’ll certainly have her back in future camps. This now puts us in a huge bind with our numbers due to the fact that Melissa Henderson had to back out the night before we left, as her car was broken into up in Boston, and someone stole her backpack which had her passport in it! Go figure…so now we are down to 16 players, two of which are goalkeepers, so we have only 14 field players. So, we have to be smart as we move forward into the tournament games.

I continue to be impressed with this team. It is so difficult to single out players that have impressed me, because they all have. The level of work and intensity as well as the level of quality is simply amazing. The team seems so ready to play a game. Hopefully we can transfer that energy into a positive performance on Friday when we play Sweden. Just look at the talent in each of the positions: Morgan Marlborough, Stephanie Ochs, Sarah Hagen, and Courtney Verloo up front. Amanda DaCosta, Ingrid Wells, Christine Nairn, Amber Brooks, and Mana Shim in midfield, with Natasha Anasi, Toni Pressley, Cammie Levin, Ellie Reed and Kika Toulouse make up a pretty strong team I’d say. I would gladly take this team and feel like this group could beat many of the WC full national teams that I saw in Germany given some time with them. To round out this lineup, the goal is anchored by Adrianna Franch and Brittany Anghel. That is not a bad team at all. Those that know these players can now tell you why I’m so excited about this group.

Off now to watch the Euro’s, so it’s been a great time to be overseas during this event…soccer is everywhere here! Until tomorrow…

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