World Cups are not won in week one but England would have settled for their current position when they flew out of Heathrow earlier this month. Two convincing early bonus-point wins, 80 points and 11 tries banked plus no serious injuries is not a bad platform from which to build when the Pool C pressure ramps up against Argentina and France over the next fortnight or so. Eddie Jones’s side have also conceded only one try in 160 minutes, scored in the closing seconds of this one-sided contest by a USA side who had previously endured a fruitless evening in most regards. Jones’s players were supposed to be still weary in the wake of Sunday’s opening game against Tonga but instead their forwards had far too much in the tank for their outclassed opponents. With the captain, George Ford, and Lewis Ludlum to the fore, England’s eventual seven-try victory was also notable for the tournament’s first red card, shown to the USA flanker John Quill in the 70th minute … [Read more...] about Cokanasiga helps England crush USA as Quill gets World Cup’s first red card
Golden Boot, Golden Ball and the World Cup. Megan Rapinoe made her mark in style. With boos for Gianni Infantino, the Fifa president, echoing around the ground at the trophy presentation and chants of “equal pay” ringing loudest, the impact off the pitch after 52 games from the reigning champions was as big as the impact on it. A coolly taken Rapinoe penalty and beautifully worked goal from Rose Lavelle was all that was needed to fire USA to their fourth Women’s World Cup against a resilient Netherlands side held together by the outstanding, yet currently unsigned, Sari van Veenendaal in goal. Rapinoe tied up the Golden Boot ahead of her teammate Alex Morgan, having matched her for goals and assists but in fewer minutes on the pitch. USA’s co-captain slotted home the spot-kick on the hour, after Morgan had been fouled by Stefanie van der Gragt. Eight minutes later, Lavelle sealed victory with a fine solo effort. With USA having overcome the hosts, France, and … [Read more...] about Megan Rapinoe on the spot as USA beat Netherlands to win Women’s World Cup
British supersonic stealth jets have taken off and landed on the HMS Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier for the first time, as part of advanced trials with the US military. The F-35 Lightning jets, the world's most advanced, will undergo rigorous mission planning and flying exercises off the east coast of north America, the Ministry of Defence said. The MoD released images of the multi-role advanced aircraft hovering above and landing on the 65,000 tonne carrier for the first time on Sunday. It follows successful trials last year with US military Lightning jets. The F-35B Lightning jet is the first to combine radar-evading stealth technology with supersonic speeds and short take-off and vertical landing capability. The fighter planes will be jointly manned by the Royal Air Force and the Royal Navy and can operate from land and sea. This follows successful developmental trials last year with US Lightning jets, where forces conducted 500 take offs and landings over their 11-week … [Read more...] about Pictured: F-35 Lightning jets take off and land on HMS Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier for the first time as the supersonic stealth planes conduct operational trials off the East Coast of the USA
Carli Lloyd won her second World Cup with the US women’s national team this summer but it’s safe to say she did not enjoy the experience as much as her teammates. The 37-year-old scored a hat-trick in the 2015 World Cup final but was relegated to a role off the bench this time around, and had to play as a forward rather than in her preferred position as an attacking midfielder. Lloyd appeared on ESPN’s Laughter Permitted with Julie Foudy podcast this week, and said the last three years were the worst of her career, as she coped with injuries and a diminished role with the national team. “I’m not going to lie and sugarcoat it,” Lloyd said. “It was absolutely the worst time of my life. It affected my relationship with my husband, with friends. It really was rock bottom of my entire career. But somehow, you see light at the end of the tunnel, and I can honestly say I’m having more fun now playing than I ever have in my career. I think I just … [Read more...] about Carli Lloyd says she hit ‘rock bottom’ during last World Cup cycle
Carli Lloyd’s well-publicized visit with the Philadelphia Eagles wasn’t her first appearance at an NFL training camp, but this one ended with a Hall of Fame executive advising teams to give her a tryout. The footage of Lloyd, a two-time Fifa player of the year, booting 55-yard field goals reignited the discussion of whether a woman will appear in an NFL game. Lloyd’s visit to Houston Texans in 2015 garnered headlines for a humorous kicking competition against defensive tackle Vince Wilfork. Last week, her seamless execution of long-range field goals during a joint practice between the Eagles and Baltimore Ravens triggered the conversation that her Hard Knocks cameo didn’t. The spark came from NFL Hall of Fame executive Gil Brandt. To Brandt and Tucker, Lloyd has the physical capabilities to kick in the NFL. Women have earned college scholarships to kick, scored points in college and professional games and even broken into professional coaching ranks. So what … [Read more...] about Will Carli Lloyd open the door for the NFL’s first female player?