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U.S. continues group play against Sweden

Forward Sydney Leroux of the USA controls the

Forward Sydney Leroux of the USA controls the ball during the Group D match of the 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup between the USA and Australia at the Winnipeg Stadium on June 8, 2015, in Winnipeg, Manitoba. Photo Credit: Getty Images

The U.S. women's national team will continue its quest for a third FIFA World Cup title and its first since 1999 when they play Sweden on Friday night at Investors Group Field in Winnipeg.

In the opening day of Group D play Monday, Sweden and Nigeria tied, 3-3, while the world No. 2 ranked U.S. defeated Australia, 3-1, placing them atop the group standings with three points.

The fifth-ranked Swedes are coached by Pia Sundhage, who was at the helm for the USWNT from 2007-12, leading the U.S. to two Olympic gold medals and a second-place finish at the 2011 World Cup during her tenure.

Sweden has been dubbed the most likely candidate to potentially upset the favored Americans in group play.

The U.S. will be challenged with containing the Swedish attack charged by striker Lotta Schelin, who led France's Division 1 Feminine league with 34 goals this season and scored 12 goals in 10 World Cup qualifying matches.

The Americans boast a capable goal scorer of their own in 35-year-old Abby Wambach, who holds the record for the most international goals scored by both males and females with 182. Wambach may not be the player she once was, but the team still has plenty of firepower.

Megan Rapinoe scored twice in the opener and Alex Morgan appears fully recovered from a recent knee injury.

The game will be televised on Fox and NBC Universo at 8 p.m.


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