Team USA showed why they are the favourites to win the Women’s World Cup after a history-making 13-0 demolition of Thailand in their Group F opener.
Jill Ellis’ charges were 3-0 up at half-time but then ran riot in the second half, with Orlando Pride forward Alex Morgan firing home five times in total as the Thais were put to the sword.
The USA are 3.50 to win the World Cup – slightly ahead of 3.60 France following the hosts’ 4-0 win over South Korea in last Friday’s tournament opener. “It was awesome,” Ellis said.
“You want your forwards hot in a tournament and it’s a great start especially for Morgan. Hopefully she carries it on through the finals.”
“I was in tears watching them. It verifies who we picked. It is about building momentum and that is part of the process. “You want the players to leave with a good feeling, if they are in a good place mentally that is a big step.”
The USA will also come up against Sweden and Chile in the group stage and Ellis has told her side to “stay humble and go back to work”. She added: “This is a world championship,” she added. “Every team that’s here has been fantastic to get to get to this point.
“To be respectful against opponents is to play hard against opponents. It is a tournament where goal difference is a criteria. You have to go out and compete. “I don’t find it my job to go and harness players and rein them in. This is what they’ve dreamt about. I respect Thailand.”
The Swedes beat Chile 2-0 on Tuesday, while in Group E the Netherlands needed a stoppage-time winner from substitute Jill Roord to see off New Zealand 1-0.