Women’s World Cup semi-final: Juggernauts USA face favourites Germany
The first 2015 Women’s World Cup semi-final promises to be a thriller, as heavyweights the USA and Germany square-up in Montreal, with the victor meeting one of England and holders Japan in Vancouver for the final.
Who then, will be the first team to cement their spot in the showpiece finale and take a shot at the coveted crown?
The USA (9/5 with Coral to win in 90 mins) and Germany just happen to be the two most successful nations in women’s football history, with two World Cup titles apiece from six previous tournaments, and though Die Nationalelf have claimed two of the past three, Team USA stopper Hope Solo thinks her side has every chance of progressing.
“They’re going to either hit us with a wake-up call that they needed or they’re going to be tired. We’re peaking at the right time…we’re right where we need to be and hopefully we’re going to beat Germany and head into the final,” Solo told press.
The 175-capped custodian has had a superb tournament herself, as the Stars and Stripes have shipped just one goal, which makes them a tasty 19/10 to keep a fourth clean sheet in Canada. Solo also has history on her side, as Team USA have triumphed an emphatic 19 times in 30 outings against their upcoming opponents.
Though the USA may boast the best defensive record in the tournament, Germany have the most potent attack with 20 strikes so far and are available in Coral’s incredible match special, where you can back them at 11/2 to win in 90 mins with both teams to score (maximum stake £20).
Die Nationalelf’s dangerwoman is clearly current tournament top scorer Celia Sasic, who has hit six and is just one shy of former Stars and Stripes attacker Michelle Akers’ record of seven, so back her at a fantastic 4/1 to fire home first, or at evens in the anytime market.
Watch Sasic shine:
Sasic’s closest competitor is creator-in-chief Anja Mittag on five, and the PSG poacher is also superb value at 4/1 to have the final say.
As for the USA, box-to-box midfielder Carli Lloyd and adaptable attacker Megan Rapinoe have both notched two and are both 10/3 to be on target anytime.
With the quality both sides possess, fans should be in for a fascinating semi-final fixture, though as the Stars and Stripes squeezed past quarter-final opponents China by just one goal, while Germany required penalties to push past France, a draw in normal time at 11/5 could prove a fruitful punt.
Coral’s top betting tip: back superb Sasic is 4/1 to strike first