USA
1

France
0

Olympics

ByTheMinRio2016

Hello hello Nikita here to bring coverage of USA v FRA, by far the hardest group stage game of them all. This is #1 v #3 and will clearly set the tone of who wins the group. To make things fun, I will be playing BINGO with the commentary so if you are following along, play with me :D

The US has released the starting line up. Biggest change -- Engen in for JJ, who has been a mainstay in the backline since the Algarve Cup last year, important to the WWC team. I have to wonder did JJ get an injury biggest Jill Ellis does not make changes like these... Dunn in for Pugh, which I figured would happen as Mal got a knock in the last game.

As mentioned, Jill Ellis does not make these changes unless she has to, and I was right.

Both line ups are here:

I will be back for kickoff! Food for thought (as I get actual food for lunch) -- can the USA backline cope with the speedy French attack? How will the midfield match up with Brian-Long rather than Brian-Horan (something I thought would happen). Will USA's hyper attack plan be punished in the transition -- especially on the wings where Kling/O'Hara must defend? Will France France?

Solo making 200th cap today, most of any goalkeeper in the game.

France finally released a nice graphic of their line up!

First thing I noticed -- no Le Sommer. Also take note: Necib goes by Cadamuro, her married name as of this June!

The US will have to find a way to break through the French CB pairing -- very strong one, making up for some of Bouhaddi's decision making at times. David Sumpter aka @Soccermatics on Twitter using @wosostats to illustrate the passing chart during the She Believes Cup! Stats at work people, get on board!

But again, take it with a grain of salt because Horan, Pugh, and Johnston are not playing for the USA -- however I can assure you, attack on the left side is the usual. Meanwhile, no Thomis for France and Henry's presence is going to be massive. She did win Silver Ball after all and currently plays not too far away from me, for the Portland Thorns!