WNT Jun 10, 2012
Christen Press, former WPS player and current England WNT player Anita Asante (who plays for Kopparbergs/Goteborg), Heather O'Reilly, Becky Sauerbrunn and Jill Loyden watch the Vittsjö GIK -Jitex game
This weekend, numerous U.S. WNT players took in not one, but two club matches from the top flight of Swedish women's football. Yes, the U.S. players are big soccer fans in general, and yes, they are interested to see the level of the top teams in Sweden, but truth be told, there were Americans -- friends and former teammates -- playing in both games.
On Saturday, some players took in Vittsjö GIK vs. local side Gothenburg side Jitex, for whom U.S. head coach Pia Sundhage played eight seasons in the late 1970s and through the 1980s, winning four championships and two Swedish Cup titles.
Vittsjö GIK eventually scored on this play
Playing for Vittsjo, which triumphed 2-1, were former U.S. youth National Team stars Kendall Fletcher, who attended UNC, and Danesha Adams, who attended UCLA. Both had excellent peformances in youth Women's World Cups for the USA, Fletcher in 2002 and Adams in 2006, when she won the Bronze Ball as the third-best player in the tournament in Russia.
On Sunday, some players went to watch Kopparbergs/Goteborg face Tyresö FF, which features five-time FIFA player of the Year Marta and Swedish captain Caroline Seger. Kopparbergs/Goteborg features former Stanford MAC Hermann Trophy winner Christen Press, who was recently named an Olympic alternate and is training with the U.S. team in Sweden, and midfielder Ingrid Wells, a member of the USA's 2008 U-20 Women's World Cup title team. Press' side fell 1-0 in front of a large crowd, but the striker was a menace all game and had several close chances.
Tyresö FF is tied on points for first place in the league with the club from Malmo and upstart Vittsjö GIK. Press' club sits in fourth on goal difference in a tightly packed middle of the table. Press leads the league with 10 goals so far this season.
GREAT crowd for Kopparbergs/Goteborg vs. Tyresö FF, but the home team lost. No, Marta did not score.
Sundhage is a popular figure in Sweden and even more so at Swedish women's club matches, where she has a hard time walking 10 yards without seeing an old friend, running into an old teammate or being asked for an autograph.