U.S. women beat China 3-0 in friendly
SAN DIEGO -- Carli Lloyd scored two goals less than three minutes apart in the first half as the United States defeated China 3-0 Thursday night in a women's soccer friendly at Qualcomm Stadium. It was the first game since Tom Sermanni was fired as coach of the United States women's team.
The victory extended the United States' unbeaten streak on home turf to 82 games (72-0-10) as Jill Ellis marked the start of her second stint as interim coach. Ellis is now 6-0-2 with the interim tag with the women's team. She took over for Pia Sundhage in 2012 when Sundhage stepped down.
"I thought there were some really good moments tonight,'' said Ellis. "They've been through a lot this week. They've got great resilience and professionalism that was on display tonight."
Lloyd took a pass from forward Lauren Holiday and beat China goalie Zhang Yue with a left foot drive just inside the right goal post in the 20th minute. In the 23rd minute, Lloyd intercepted a pass and drilled a shot from 25 yards out that caught the inside of the left goalpost past Yue.
Lloyd has 50 goals in international play.
Prior to those two scores, U.S. goalkeeper Hope Solo made a terrific hand save on a shot by Zhang Rui in the 11th minute of play. Solo's clean sheet was the 70th of her career.
"We are comfortable with Jill and we love Jill and have a lot of respect for her," Solo said. "She didn't miss a beat. She came in she put the pen on the board and started coaching. I think people perk up and listen to her and yes I'd love to see her on board."
Lloyd suffered a bloody nose in a collision late in the first half but did return to play. United States defender Rachel Van Hollebeke suffered a twisted left ankle in the first half and did not return.
All-time leading scorer Abby Wambach made her first appearance at the start of the second half but was held scoreless. Forward Sydney Leroux scored the third goal of the game with an assist from Megan Rapinoe in the 46th miinute
The U.S. dominated the game statistically, outshooting China 19-3 with 12 of their shots going on goal. The team is now 6-2-1 in 2014.
The women next face Canada at 8 p.m. ET on Thursday, May 8, at Investors Group Field in Winnipeg, Canada.