Women's World Cup 2011, USA Vs. Japan: USA's Run Awakens Country's Interest In Soccer

Monte Poole of the Bay Area News Group writes that the USA's run through the 2011 Women's World Cup has awakened the United States' interest in soccer, a sport to which it often seems ambivalent. Poole compares the team to the USA's last World Cup winner, the 1999 team:

Indeed, the '99 team cut an impressive figure, like the perfect big sister. The '11 team simply is driven to create its own footprints, to remind the world that the U.S. still matters and to inform an indifferent country there is more to women's soccer than anything that happened a dozen years ago ...

Given the increased discussion of the World Cup, nearly all of it since Sunday's mesmerizing final minutes, it appears the team is succeeding.

After beating good Brazilian and French teams, the U.S. will face Japan in the finals on Sunday at 2:45 PM Eastern. The U.S. has beaten Japan repeatedly this year, but Japan just beat Sweden, which had defeated the U.S. earlier in the World Cup.

The resurgence in USA interest in soccer is well-timed, since it should help the USA-based league Women's Professional Soccer (WPS) stay solvent. The team's run through the World Cup could have lasting implications for the future of soccer in the U.S.

For more on the USA's World Cup run, check out the rest of this storystream.

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