The United States Women’s National Team is through to the knockout round of the Women’s World Cup.
However, to defend their title they will have to navigate a tricky path.
Thanks to a lackluster performance in group play — with a win and a pair of draws — the USWNT advanced as the runners-up in their group, and face a perilous road ahead. They will first take on Sweden in the Round of 16, the third-ranked team in the world.
Should the United States win on Sunday, things may get even tougher. Japan, the hottest team in the entire tournament, awaits the winner of US-Sweden.
But first things first, a date with the Swedes. Here’s how to watch, storylines, and more.
How to watch
If you’re looking to tune in from the United States it is going to be either a very early morning, or an extremely late night for you.
Date: Sunday, August 6
Time: 5:00 a.m. Eastern/2:00 a.m. Pacific
Streaming: Sling, Fubo, FOXSports.com and the FOX Sports App
The major storyline at the moment? How will the United States rebound after a disappointing run through group play?
There is also frustration from outside. Former USWNT star Carli Lloyd questioned the team following their final game of group play, a 0-0 draw with Portugal that required some woodwork to keep the US alive.
There are also questions facing US coach Vlatko Andonovski, and his handling of tactics as well as substitutions. Our own James Dator spoke with Tobin Heath and Christen Press, who are missing this World Cup due to injury, and Press wondered about some of the coaching decisions — or non-decisions — against the Netherlands. “Was [the coaching staff] afraid of making a change?” Press wondered, “there’s no way in the world that you’re wondering if Megan Rapinoe can come in for 15 minutes and deliver a great cross. You’re confident in that, there’s no lack of confidence.”
They’ll need that confidence, and fast, if they are going to survive and advance.