Gold medal favourites the USA started their bid for a fifth girls’s Olympic soccer title with an embarrassing 3-0 loss to Sweden, whereas Staff GB kicked off their marketing campaign on the Tokyo Video games by beating Chile on Wednesday.
The US have received 4 of six Olympic titles since girls’s soccer was launched to the programme in 1996, however suffered a heavy defeat by the identical group that knocked them out on penalties within the quarter-finals in Rio.
Stina Blackstenius scored twice earlier than substitute Lina Hurtig added a 3rd for 2016 silver medallists Sweden at a recreation performed in entrance of empty stands at Tokyo Stadium because of strict Covid-19 restrictions.
The loss ended a 44-match unbeaten run for the Individuals courting again to the beginning of 2019. It was additionally solely the second time they’d misplaced a recreation in 90 minutes on the Olympics.
“They’re (Sweden) the most effective groups on the earth,” stated US ahead Megan Rapinoe. “There’s actually no time to dwell or take into consideration if Sweden resides in our heads or not. We have got one other recreation in three days.”
In Sapporo, Britain received their Group E opener 2-0, with Manchester Metropolis striker Ellen White scoring twice and having a purpose disallowed by VAR for offside.
Hege Riise’s aspect are bidding to turn into the primary British group to win an Olympic soccer medal.
“While you get into a contest, it is actually essential you win that first recreation,” stated Staff GB captain Steph Houghton.
“There’s nonetheless plenty of stuff to enhance on however three factors on the board, we’re actually happy.”
Brazil star Marta bagged two targets in a 5-0 rout of China in Group F.
Debinha scored in between Marta’s brace earlier than a late Andressa penalty and Beatriz strike accomplished a complete victory in Rifu.
European champions and 2019 World Cup runners-up the Netherlands tackle Zambia later in a gathering of Olympic newcomers within the group’s different recreation.
Hosts Japan are in motion in opposition to Canada, who’ve received bronze on the previous two Olympics.
– A number of groups take a knee –
Gamers from the US, Sweden, Staff GB and Chile all took a knee earlier than kick-off to focus on racial injustice.
“As gamers in Nice Britain we have been taking the knee in membership and worldwide matches and we felt strongly as a gaggle that we wished to point out help for these affected by discrimination and equality,” stated Houghton.
“It was a proud second as a result of the Chile gamers took the knee too to point out how united we’re as sport.”
New Zealand did the identical forward of their recreation in opposition to Australia, whose gamers stood arm in arm going through their opponents.
The Worldwide Olympic Committee has relaxed among the guidelines for protests on the Video games, softening a long-standing ban on political protests on the world sporting occasion.
Athletes will now be allowed to take a knee earlier than play begins to focus on racial injustice, converse to the media and put up on-line about their views, or put on clothes with a protest slogan at a press convention.
However political statements throughout occasions, victory ceremonies and on the Olympic Village are nonetheless off the playing cards, the IOC stated.
“For us it feels proper to face up for human rights,” stated Sweden defender Amanda Ilestedt.
“For us it feels good to do, and one thing we stand for as a group.”