EAST HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) - Allie Long scored her first two international goals, and the United States routed Colombia 7-0 Wednesday night in the Americans’ first exhibition since five players filed a wage-discrimination action against the U.S. Soccer Federation.
Carli Lloyd, Alex Morgan, Hope Solo, Megan Rapinoe and Becky Sauerbrunn filed an action last week with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, accusing the USSF of unlawfully paying them less than members of the U.S. men’s national team. The union for the women’s national team is in a legal battle with the USSF, claiming it can terminate its labor contract. The USSF claims the deal runs through December.
“We weren’t really thinking about all that stuff, because at the end of the day that stuff will work itself out,” Lloyd said. “We have to continue to make sure we are putting a good result out on the field.”
The U.S. team was not the only one fighting money issues. The Colombian team has not been paid in two months, Philly.com reported last week.
“What happens, if we get money or if we don’t get money, that’s not important now,” Colombia midfielder Rincon said.
Crystal Dunn, Mallory Pugh, Lloyd, Tobin Heath and Christen Press also scored for the Americans, who are preparing for this summer’s Olympics, where they will try to win their fourth straight gold medal.
“This team has always done a wonderful job of managing to compartmentalize,” U.S. coach Jill Ellis said. “I don’t think in any way shape or form we let anything spill over to the training ground or the pitch tonight. I think it was a really good team performance, the crowd was fantastic and I admire them to be out in this cold weather.”
Solo made two saves in her eighth shutout of the year, and the U.S. improved to 10-0 this year going into Sunday’s match against Colombia at Chester, Pennsylvania. Morgan (hip) and Morgan Brian (hamstring) did not suit up but are expected to be available for Sunday.
The U.S. outshot Colombia 24-6, including 14-2 in shots on goal.
“I have great respect for Colombia, I always have,” said Solo, who was part of last year’s team that beat Colombia 2-0 in the World Cup’s round of 16. “I’m a little bit surprised that the score was 7-0. I expected more from them. It was a pretty combative game in the World Cup, but tonight we looked pretty good.”
Dunn put the Americans ahead in the 27th, beating goalkeeper Catalina Perez. Long, a 28-year-old midfielder, doubled the lead in the 32nd with a header off a pass from Portland teammate Lindsey Horan.
“She had a good week of training,” Ellis said of Long. “We are still making sure we are looking for depth and she did well. She made some good decisions, got a couple goals and was impactful.”
Pugh made it 3-0 a minute later with an assist from Lloyd, who scored her 87th international goal in the 39th.
Heath got her goal in the 62nd minute off a cross from Dunn, and Long scored on a header from Julie Johnston’s pass in the 65th. Christen Press added a goal in the 74th minute.
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