FOOTBALL Preview: U.S. women look to rebound vs. Spain in Alicante

American striker Mallory Pugh

After getting thoroughly beaten by third-ranked France last Saturday in Le Havre, the U.S. women’s National Team is in Alicante (ESP) for its first meeting ever with Spain on Tuesday (22nd).

The night game will be played Estadio Jose Rico Perez at 2:30 p.m. Eastern time in the U.S. and televised on ESPN2 and UDN.

Spain is ranked 12th in the world by FIFA and has qualified for the 2019 Women’s World Cup. It’s the first meeting ever between the teams and will wrap up a two-game European trip to start the 2019 season.

It’s not yet known if the American stars who could not play vs. France – Megan Rapinoe, Julie Ertz and Tobin Heath – will be ready. But the U.S. could certainly use them, as the French dominated play and kept the ball away from the American side for most of the game.

The U.S. avoided a shut-out with a stoppage-time goal from Mallory Pugh off a Carli Lloyd assist against France. But the U.S. defense, which came in with an 884-minute shutout streak – was shredded repeatedly and gave up the first of three goals just nine minutes into the game.