It is not in the habits of American players, four Olympic gold medals and two world titles to their name, to reproduce twice the same mistake. Unhappy finalists in 2011 against Japan, Jill Ellis doesn’t intend to lose their second world ranking final. In 2011, the Japanese had created a surprise by dominating USA in Frankfurt at the end of the penalty shootout (2-2ap, 3-1 on penalties) That the two teams will play a rematch.

Since 2011, it is, indeed, their third opposition in a major competition. And if it is, indeed, the revenge match of 2011 in the Women’s World Cup, in the meantime the 2012 Olympic Games took place, to the advantage of Americans, which imposed themselves the final with a victory of 2-1 thanks to Carli Lloyd.

If the Japanese are the only ones to have won all their matches in this World Cup, they do not always show to be extremely bright and spectacular, consistently winning their encounter with one goal more than their opponents. Since their first game of the tournament against Australia (3-1), the Americans refused to intake any goals, even against the Germans nor the French in the semifinals winning 2-0. What an explosive offense at the BC Stadium in Vancouver between the fittest selections, but especially between the two most “finest” teams of our time.

On one hand, the technical quality and movement of Japan, in the other, the athletic power and mental strength of the United States, chasing a world title since 1999. Their two victories back in 1991 and 1999 and after two bronze medals in 2003 and 2007 and a final loss in 2011, it would simply be disastrous for the USA to go home without a trophy. Especially in Canada, it’s like playing at home. But be careful not to confuse speed with haste.

“We do not underestimate Japan for a second. We have won nothing and we know how it feels to lose a final. It’s not a nice feeling,” assured Abby Wambach, who, at 35 years old, still dreams of a first title. And the American striker has not really forgotten the defeat of 2011 in Frankfurt.

“It is this defeat that fuels our fire. It is what motivates us to do that extra sprint, even to go at war to win the ball. It is always on our minds. This is what happens when you have a broken heart. You don’t get over it.”

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