The last time the U.S. women's national team faced Sweden, it wound up with its earliest exit from a major tournament ever and the beginning of the end for Hope Solo's national team career. So it's safe to say Jill Ellis's side enjoyed the more favorable result it secured in the rematch.
Rose Lavelle's second-half goal provided the difference in a 1-0 friendly win in Gothenburg, Sweden, that kicked off a two-game Scandinavia swing for the Americans. Alex Morgan was not available after aggravating a hamstring injury, but Carli Lloyd, Crystal Dunn, Becky Sauerbrunn & Co. suited up with revenge on the mind after the penalty-kick ouster in Brazil in August. What followed was Solo's infamous "cowards" comment and a turning of the page for the U.S. women, who have experimented in subsequent friendlies and tournaments in hopes of finding a winning combination leading into the 2019 World Cup.
The two sides played to a cagey first half, with neither really threatening the other. Olivia Schough had Sweden's best opportunity, a speculative blast from distance that Alyssa Naeher tipped over the bar with relative ease.
Lavelle, one of the new faces worked into the mix since the Olympics failure, snapped the deadlock in the 56th minute, scoring from a tough angle. The Boston Breakers rookie took a pass from Dunn on the right side and finished with a low shot to the far post to make it 1-0 over ex-U.S. manager Pia Sundhage's side.
The USA held on from there and will look to go 2-for-2 in Scandinavia when taking on Norway on Sunday.