Title favorite the United States were stunned 3-0 by Sweden as the womens football tournament of the Tokyo Olympics kicked off on Wednesday.
The world champion is seeking revenge against Sweden for their defeat in the quarterfinals five years ago at the Rio Olympics. But the Swedish side made full use of its advantage in the air in all three goals. Two goals from Stina Blackstenius and one from substitute Lina Hurtig handed Sweden a convincing victory, reports Xinhua.
U.S. head coach Vlatko Andonovski said the defeat was unexpected but admitted that his team was outperformed by Sweden in many aspects.
“We have put ourselves in a big hole and we could only be the ones to get ourselves out of it,” he told a post-match press conference. “We will have to get positive results in the next two games, it’s not going to be easy but there’s still a chance and I know this team is not going to give up.”
In the other match of Group G, Australia scored two first-half goals to beat New Zealand 2-1.
In Group F, both Brazil and the Netherlands claimed landslide victories against their respective opponents.
Legendary striker Marta scored twice to help Brazil ease past China 5-0, while World Cup runner-up the Netherlands crushed Zambia 10-3.
In Group E, striker Ellen White scored a brace as Great Britain defeated Chile 2-0, while host Japan salvaged a late goal against Canada to tie 1-1.