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U.S. WNT Prepares to Face Norway in Second 2011 Algarve Cup Match

U.S. Women’s National Team
2011 Algarve Cup Notes
The Algarve, Portugal
March 3, 2011

SECOND MATCH OF GROUP A LOOMS LARGE AS USA FACES NORWAY: The USA and Norway are tied atop Group A with three points after each won 2-1 in its opening game of the Algarve Cup. The two countries meet on March 4 at Municipal Stadium in Vila Real de San Antonio with a 10 a.m. ET kickoff. Fans can follow the action on’s MatchTracker and Twitter @ussoccer_wnt. A winner in this match would have the inside track to the group title and a berth in the championship game. The winners of Groups A and B meet for the championship on March 9 at Stadium Algarve in Faro. For complete Algarve Cup results and standings, as well as links to other U.S. content, click on the Algarve Cup competition page.

U.S. WNT 2011 Algarve Cup Schedule

Date Opponent Result / Time (Local/ET) U.S. Goalscorer(s) Venue
March 2 Japan 2-1 W Rodriguez, Rapinoe Estádio Municipal; VR de SA
March 4 Norway 3 p.m. / 10 a.m.   Estádio Municipal; VR de SA
March 7 Finland 3 p.m. / 10 a.m.   Estádio Municipal; Quarteira
March 9 Placement Match TBD   TBD

Group A

Team GP W L T GF GA GD Pts.
USA 1 1 0 0 2 1 +1 3
NOR 1 1 0 0 2 1 +1 3
JPN 1 0 1 0 1 2 -1 0
FIN 1 0 1 0 1 2 -1 0

March 2
USA 2, Japan 1
Norway 2, Finland 1

March 4
USA vs. Norway
Japan vs. Finland

March 7
USA vs. Finland
Japan vs. Norway

GROUP A RECAP: Norway actually fell behind Finland in the 28th minute on a goal from Sky Blue FC forward Laura Kalmari, but then equalized one minute later through Elise Thorsnes. Norway bagged a winner 10 minutes later from young star Isabel Herlovsen. Norway used all six of its substitutes in the second half, meaning the team will be as rested as possible for the clash with the USA. U.S. head coach Pia Sundhage used 15 players and got goals from Amy Rodriguez (her second of 2011) and Megan Rapinoe (her first of the year).

GROUP B RECAP: Iceland pulled off a big upset of Sweden 2-1 in Loulé, rebounding from giving up a goal in just the second minute to Josefine Oqvist. Iceland tied the game in the 38th minute through veteran Margaret Vidarsdottir and then got the winner in the 54th from captain Katrin Jonsdottir. Denmark and China played a match where the winning goal was an odd one, coming just seconds into the game on an own goal from China’s Wang Dongni. The goal held up for the next 89-plus minutes and a 1-0 victory for the Danes. That means Iceland sits atop Group B after the first match day. Iceland has played in the past four Algarve Cup tournaments and never finished higher than sixth.

GROUP C RECAP: Portugal was the only team to score more than two goals on the first match day of the 2011 Algarve Cup, defeating Wales 3-1 as Carla Couto became the all-time leading scorer in Algarve Cup history with her 16th and 17th goals in the Algarve Cup. Romania welcomed Chile to the Algarve Cup for the first time with a 2-0 victory. Both goals came from Cosmina Dusa.

Current FIFA World Ranking: 7
All-Time Algarve Cup Results: 41-18-9
Overall USA Record vs. Norway: 25-19-2
USA record vs. Norway at Algarve Cup: 7-4-1
USA most recent meeting with Norway: Feb. 26, 2010 (a 2-1 U.S. win at the 2010 Algarve Cup)
Head Coach: Eli Landsem
Norway Algarve Cup Finals: 7 (1994, 1996, 1997, 1998, 2000, 2002, 2004). Norway won the Algarve Cup in 1994, 1997 and 1998.
Norway Key Players: G Ingrid Hjelmseth, M Lise-Marie Woods, M Lena Storløkken, F Lindy Melissa Wiik, F Leni Larsen Kaurin, F Isabel Herlovsen

USA vs. Norway Fast Facts: For years, Norway was the only team in the world with a winning record against the USA, but an unprecedented 10-game winning streak for the USA (2002-2008), that ended with the loss at the 2008 Olympics, reversed that trend and the USA now holds a 25-19-2 edge in the all-time series … Still, no country in the world has beaten the USA more times than Norway and no team has beaten the USA more times at the Algarve Cup than Norway (4) … Norway’s coach Eli Landsem will be coaching in her first Women’s World Cup this summer … The 48-year-old took over in the fall of 2009 and led Norway through FIFA World Cup qualifying to a berth in Germany … U.S. head coach Pia Sundhage used four substitutes in the first match against Japan while Landsem used all six in Norway’s victory against Finland … The U.S. field players who didn’t see action were Lindsay Tarpley, Kelley O’Hara, Becky Sauerbrunn and Whitney Engen, but as Sundhage will look to every player minutes this tournament, they could see the field against Norway ... After defeating Japan at Vila Real de San Antonio on March 2, the USA has a 7-0-1 all-time record at the venue ... The USA (43 wins) and Norway (41) are the two teams who have won the most games all-time at the Algarve Cup … This will be the 47th meeting between the USA and Norway, second-most against any country for the USA (Canada, 48) … The USA and Norway met at last year’s Algarve Cup in Olhao in the second match for both teams with the USA winning 2-1 on two goals from Abby Wambach … Just one Norwegian has spent time with a U.S. team as forward Lene Mykjaland played for the Washington Freedom last season, appearing in 19 matches and scoring four goals.

2011 U.S. Algarve Cup Roster
GOALKEEPERS (2): 18-Nicole Barnhart (Philadelphia Independence), 24-Ashlyn Harris (Western New York Flash)
DEFENDERS (6): 19-Rachel Buehler (Boston Breakers), 14-Stephanie Cox (Boston Breakers), 25-Whitney Engen (Western New York Flash), 11-Ali Krieger (FFC Frankfurt), 3-Christie Rampone (magicJack's Washington Freedom), 22-Becky Sauerbrunn (magicJack's Washington Freedom)
MIDFIELDERS (8): 7-Shannon Boxx (magicJack's Washington Freedom), 17-Tobin Heath (Sky Blue FC), 16-Lori Lindsey (Philadelphia Independence), 10-Carli Lloyd (Atlanta Beat), 21-Kelley O’Hara (Boston Breakers), 9-Heather O’Reilly (Sky Blue FC), 15-Megan Rapinoe (Philadelphia Independence), 5-Lindsay Tarpley (magicJack's Washington Freedom)
FORWARDS (4): 12-Lauren Cheney (Boston Breakers), 13-Alex Morgan (Western New York Flash), 8-Amy Rodriguez (Philadelphia Independence), 20-Abby Wambach (magicJack's Washington Freedom)

2011 Norway Algarve Cup Roster
GOALKEEPERS (2): 1-Ingrid Hjelmseth (Stabæk), 12-Erika Skarbo (Arna-Bjornar)
DEFENDERS (6): 2-Runa Vikestad (Kolbotn), 3-Maren Mjelde (Arna-Bjornar), 4-Nora Berge (Linkoping, Sweden), 5-Ingrid Ryland (Arna-Bjornar), 15-Hedda Gardsjord (Røa), 18-Guro Knutsen Mienna (Røa)
MIDFIELDERS (6): 6-Lise-Marie Woods (Fortuna Hjorring, Denmark), 7-Trine Rønning (Stabek), 8-Lena Storløkken (LSK Kvinner), 14-Gry Tofte Ims (Klepp), 18-Lene Mykjaland (Røa), 20-Lise Klaveness (Stabæk)
FORWARDS (6): 9-Isabel Herlovsen (LSK Kvinner), 10-Lindy Wiik (Stabæk), 11-Leni Larsen Kaurin (Wolfsburg, Germany), 13-Cecilie Pedersen (Avaldsnese), 16-Elisa Thorsnes (Røa), 17-Madeleine Giske (Arna-Bjornar)

1000 ALGARVE GOALS: With 990 goals being scored all-time in Algarve Cup history, the 1000th is surely in the books for Match Day 2 as the 12 teams in the tournament will play six games on March 4.

VIDEO ALGARVE: The matches have started so that means there will be plenty of U.S. highlights on, but we’ve also put together a few videos. You can check out the USA’s first training, a Trick Shot Battle between Tobin Heath and Yael Averbuch, some highlights of the USA’s training match against Portugal, an update on the comeback from shoulder surgery by goalkeeper Hope Solo and a look at Rachel Buehler’s pre-practice rituals.

Stat of Note:
Against Japan on March 2, Abby Wambach played in her 150th career game for the USA, making her the 14th U.S. player to reach that mark.