The United States thrashed Japan 5-2 and lifted the Women’s World Cup for the third time last night as the July 4th weekend climaxed in perfect fashion.
The game already looked beyond doubt after 16 minutes as the USA raced into 4-0 lead courtesy of an incredible 13 minute hat-trick from captain and midfielder Carli LLoyd and one from Lauren Holiday. Lloyd’s third goal came from inside her own half as she spotted Japan’s goalkeeper some way off her line.
The USA’s third Women’s World Cup triumph comes after successes in 1991 and 1999, and only four years after losing to Japan in the last final in 2011 via a penalty shoot-out. This time there was to be no repeat as Japan were on the ropes before the 20 minute mark. Japan also suffered the ignominy of conceding the fastest ever Women’s World Cup final goal in history. It wasn’t a very good day at the office for the Japanese team.
Bucking trends elsewhere across the globe – particularly in Europe – the USA women’s team enjoys an equal share of – if not more – prominence than their male counterparts. This is largely in part down to the popularity of the game amongst women and girls; numbers of registered players across the nation have soared since the mid-70s and will no doubt grow even faster after the USA’s triumph last night. Some analysts deduce that the growth of the women’s game across the globe mirrors statistics relating to gender equality. The closer the gap in any given nation, the better the team.
While the men’s domestic game relies on expensive and ageing imports from Europe – the latest being ex-Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard joining L.A. Galaxy – the women’s game is benefiting from a conveyor belt of fresh, well-trained and eager talent. The future looks very bright for the women’s game in the USA.
Of course, life being life and people being stupid, it seems even joyous occasions such as this must be ruined by the cavalcade of pricks that bounce around the internet. Some people have no off-switch when it comes to the words ‘Japan’ and ‘USA’ in the same sentence and sure enough, the ghosts of World War II were brought back on social media for all to see.
#PearlHarbor was a worldwide trend throughout the game, as scores of idiots decided now would be the best time to bring up this dark moment in human history. Not that these people are the most intelligent to begin with, but the total lack of awareness in regards to ‘revenge’ for Pearl Harbor is worrying. Hiroshima? Nagasaki? Ring any bells? Hello? Idiots.