Spirited Colombia frustrate holders USA
Catalina Usme scored two free-kicks as a spirited Colombia side managed a 2-2 draw against holders USA in Group G at the Women's Olympic Football Tournament Rio 2016 at the Amazonia Arena in Manaus.
Veteran USA goalkeeper Hope Solo failed to save a routine free-kick from Usme in the 26th minute, allowing the ball to slip through her hands and give Las Cafeteras a shock lead. It was an unexpected moment, especially considering the dominance in possession USA had enjoyed up until that point.
The crowd in Manaus were clearly in support of their fellow South Americans as the noise in the stadium swelled anytime Las Cafeteras managed to move forward in attack.
Eventually, Colombia couldn't hold on to the lead, and in the 41st minute, Crystal Dunn equalised for the London 2012 gold medallists and heavy favourites on the night. Dunn was the quickest to respond to a shot by captain Carli Lloyd which hit the crossbar and the New York native made no mistake from close range. The sides went in level at half-time.
The Stars and Stripes continued to maintain the majority of possession at the start of the second half, and they took the lead in the 59th minute. Substitute Mallory Pugh settled a Dunn cross on the far post, before dribbling to her left and shooting low past a couple of defenders and into the goal. The 18-year-old showed a great deal of composure inside the penalty area to put her side in front.
Usme almost troubled Solo again in the 77th minute with a free-kick from further out. Her curling effort struck the crossbar. However, she would have one more trick up her sleeve.
In the first minute of injury time, Usme sensationally curled in a free-kick from a hard angle and equalised for Las Cafeteras to make it 2-2 on the night.
Colombia held on to share the points with USA and they will head home from the tournament with their heads held high after their valiant effort in Manaus. Despite the disappointing draw from a USA perspective, they finished top of Group G and will face the third-placed team from either Group E or F in Brasilia.