Los Angeles Times - - BASEBALL - — Kevin Bax­ter


Where: Mon­treal. Time: 1 p. m. PDT. TV: Chan­nel 11. The buzz: Ar­guably the two best teams in this tour­na­ment, Ger­many and France will meet in the quar­ter­fi­nals rather than the fi­nal af­ter FIFA drew the brack­ets with ticket sales — i. e. en­sure Canada and the U. S. go as far as pos­si­ble — rather than com­pet­i­tive bal­ance in mind. Ger­many is go­ing for its third Women’s World Cup crown in ad­di­tion to try­ing to be­come the first coun­try to hold men’s and women’s Cup ti­tles at the same time. Ger­many leads the tour­na­ment with a goal dif­fer­en­tial of plus- 17, win­ning three games by an av­er­age of nearly six goals. France, which has never fin­ished higher than fourth in a Women’s World Cup, stum­bled only once here, los­ing 2- 0 to Colom­bia. But it didn’t give up a goal in its other three games and won its last two by a com­bined 8- 0.


Where: Ot­tawa. Time: 4: 30 p. m. PDT. TV: Chan­nel 11, NBC Universo. The buzz: The re­build­ing Chi­nese say they’ve achieved their goal by reach­ing the quar­ter­fi­nals; the Amer­i­cans have said any­thing short of a cham­pi­onship is un­ac­cept­able. But the U. S. will have to over­come more than the pres­sure of ex­pec­ta­tions. The Amer­i­cans will also be miss­ing start­ing mid­field­ers Lau­ren Hol­i­day and Me­gan Rapi­noe, both of whom were handed sec­ond yel­low cards in their last games. And the U. S. is in an of­fen­sive funk, with only five goals from the run of play in four games. The Amer­i­cans have also pitched three con­sec­u­tive shutouts, though, while de­fense- minded China has given up only three goals in the tour­na­ment.

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