5 further things you might not know about USA vs. Costa Rica

Tobin Heath vs.Costa Rica, Chattanooga, Tenn, Aug. 20, 2015. (Jim Brown/USA Today Sports)

Tobin Heath vs.Costa Rica, Chattanooga, Tenn, Aug. 19, 2015. (Jim Brown/USA Today Sports)

In back-to-back matches, the U.S. women’s team thumped poor, young Costa Rica 8-0 in Pittsburgh on Sunday (Aug. 16), and 7-2 in Chattanooga, Tenn. on Wednesday (Aug. 19).

victorylogoThe games, the first for the Americans since the World Cup, kicked off a 10-city Victory Tour. (The final four dates and locations, however, have yet to be announced.)

Next stop for Team USA: Ford Field in Detroit on Sept. 17 for the first of two games against Australia

Here are five oddities, curiosities or (possibly) interesting facts about the Costa Rica (mis)matches and their participants:

 

1.

The U.S. women extended their unbeaten streak at home  to 98 games. They have not lost a game on U.S. soil since Nov. 6, 2004, when the were beaten 3-1 by Denmark in Philadelphia. That’s almost 11 years without a home loss.

The streak includes 86 wins and 12 draws.

The team’s second-longest unbeaten streak at home is 50 games , from Feb.10, 1996 to April 22, 1999.

 

2.

At 28, Costa Rica’s coach, Amelia Valverde, is quite young to be running a national team, especially one that made it into the World Cup. But she wasn’t the youngest head coach in Canada this summer. Ecuador’s Vanessa Arauz is 26.

amelia

Amelia Valverde. (Elsa/Getty Images North America)

 

3.

The U.S, women were making return visits to both Heinz Field in Pittsburgh and Finley Stadium in Chattanooga. In 2004, they beat Iceland 3-0 at Heinz Field, home of the Pittsburgh  Steelers, and in 1997, they beat Sweden 3-1 at Finley Stadium, home of the University of Tennessee-Chattanooga football team.

Heinz Field. (Pittsburgh Steelers)

Heinz Field. (Pittsburgh Steelers)

 

4.

Team USA has not lost in 2015 since stumbling out of the blocks. In the first game of the year, on Feb. 8, France beat the Americans 2-0 in Lorient, France. (This was during Hope Solo’s suspension.)

Since then, the  United States has won 15 games and played three opponents to scoreless draws: Iceland on March 9 in the Algarve Cup, South Korea in a friendly on May 30, and Sweden on June 12 in the World Cup.

 

5.

Becky Sauerbrunn did not play in the game in Pittsburgh. Until then, she was the only member of the U.S. team to have started every game in 2015.

After taking a break on Aug. 16 in Pittsburgh, Becky Sauerbrunn was back in the starting lineup three days later in Chattanooga. (Jim Brown /USA Today Sports)

After taking a break on Aug. 16 in Pittsburgh, Becky Sauerbrunn was back in the starting lineup three days later in Chattanooga. (Jim Brown /USA Today Sports)

 

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