Deja Vu All Over Again

Like the saying - and that awful song - goes, "Be Careful What You Wish For".

In Hope Solo's case, the Olympic Gold Medal game, a replay of last year's US-Brazil match in the Women's World Cup, is her chance to prove to the world that her postgame comments, ill-advised though they may have been, were dead on.

You'll recall of course that Solo remarked to reporters that had coach Greg "Satan" Ryan started her instead of a musty, flea-bitten old has-been that Brazil would have scored NO goals and the US would have won.

(She later sort-of apologized, saying that when she criticized the coach for starting a useless old hag in her place she of course meant no offense to the useless old hag, a distinction which was lost on many observers particularly, it should be noted, most of her teammates and the useless old hag herself.)

So as fate would have it, she's being handed her chance at redemption: the same opponent, in a super-high profile match with everything on the line.

It's unfortunate that she's ratcheted up the pressure on herself higher than it needed to be, but that's the price you pay for running your mouth.

And when it's Solo that Marta is bearing down on instead of the useless old hag, she'll get a chance to prove just how right she was.

I wish her all the luck in the world, not just because I'm rooting for the US Women but because in order to keep Brazil out of the US goal she may very well be called upon for the performance of a lifetime.

Solo will have to hope, for example that her defenders don't do the "Gee, isn't it a lovely day, and look at all those people in the - HEY, Japan just scored" act they pulled early in today's match.

The strength of the US squad is supposed to be the veteran back line, particularly Margraff and Rampone, who looked about as clueless as it's possible to be in hanging Solo out to dry.

It's a credit to the US - and particularly coach PiaSundhage - that they never changed their approach today. Even after going up by two, and then by three, she refused to go into a cocoon against a feisty (but far less talented) Japanese side.

The US just kept coming and coming, and their opponent was never able to get their feet back under them.

The other interesting thing was that the US Women looked far more fit than the Japanese, whose claim to fame is their mental and physical toughness.

Instead, it was the Americans who were still going strong late in the second half and the Japanese who looked like they were out of gas.

You gotta love the whole Tarheel thing:

Almost every media outlet in the USA went with the headline "US Rallies to Best Japan 4-2, Reach Olympic Final"

The Charlotte News Observer heads the exact same AP story TWO EX_HEELS HELP AMERICANS TO GOLD MEDAL GAME"

Maybe (probably) it's just me, but every time I see a shot of Sepp Blatter watching a women's match I wonder if he's sitting there envisioning the players in much tighter pants.