Alex Morgan is expected to play today in USA’s match against Spain after sustaining an injury in the USWNT’s final group stage match versus Sweden. The U.S. has not gone into great detail about Morgan’s injury but did say she missed the second half of the last match as a precautionary measure.
The Los Angeles Times detailed U.S. manager Jill Ellis’ thought process in holding Morgan out of the second half against Sweden.
U.S. coach Jill Ellis said she kept Morgan out of the second half of that game as a precaution and she expects the team’s leading scorer to be available for Monday’s knockout-round game with Spain.
“It was just more ‘let’s be smart about this,’ ” Ellis said. “It’s a zero-risk game in terms of having players available for the next game.”
Morgan went down in the first half after being pushed by a Sweden player. While she remained in the game for the rest of the first half, Ellis opted to bring Carli Lloyd in at the start of the second half. Morgan has not elaborated on the injury only telling reporters she was “okay” the day after the injury occurred.
The U.S. has not gone into many details about Morgan’s injury but Ellis noted she suffered a “knock” against Sweden, per Goal.com.
Alex Morgan & Julie Ertz Are Expected to Play Against Spain
Julie Ertz missed the match against Sweden but is expected to play against Spain. Sports Illustrated’s Grant Wahl detailed Ertz hip injury prior to the Sweden match.
Hearing Julie Ertz has picked up an injury and will not start today vs Sweden…Julie Ertz is probably the US’s most indispensable player in the World Cup. I’m told the injury isn’t too serious…US Soccer says Julie Ertz has a minor hip contusion, being kept out of the lineup for precautionary reasons.
Without going into great detail, Ellis noted that both Morgan and Ertz were “fine” heading into the match against Spain, per Goal.com.
Ellis was asked on Sunday about both players, and although she was not in a mood to reveal much about the duo, she indicated that they should be ready to go for Monday’s game.
“Alex is fine, she’s fine,” Ellis said. The coach also said in response to a later question about Ertz: “[Julie] is fine.”
If the USWNT Can Advance, They Would Play France in the World Cup Quarterfinals
Morgan and Ertz in the lineup give the U.S. the best chance to defeat Spain. If the USA can defeat Spain, they would advance to the next round to play France.
The U.S. and France entered the World Cup as the two favorites to win the tournament. It will be interesting to see if Morgan and Ertz look to be at full strength against Spain. All indications are neither player sustained a serious injury.