In a highly-anticipated match between the United States and Ireland on Saturday, the former emerged victorious with a 2-0 win. However, the game was overshadowed by a major injury to Mallory Swanson, one of the star players of the US women’s soccer team, just months before the highly-anticipated women’s World Cup.
During the game, Swanson had to be stretchered off the field in visible distress at the end of the first half in Austin. This was due to a heavy challenge from Ireland’s Aoife Mannion, which caused Swanson’s left knee to buckle.
The incident halted the game for several minutes, with US coach Vlatko Andonovski rushing to comfort Swanson as she received treatment before being carted off.
Swanson’s injury raises concerns about her fitness for the upcoming Women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand, which kicks off in July.
The 25-year-old striker is a vital member of the US national team, having scored seven international goals in just five appearances this year. She was taken to a local hospital for assessment, and Andonovski is waiting anxiously for news on the extent of the injury.
Despite the injury, the USA extended their winning streak to seven games, with Emily Fox scoring her first international goal and Lindsey Horan converting a penalty.
The US will begin their World Cup campaign against Vietnam in Auckland on July 21.
Andonovski insisted that Swanson was fit to continue playing after an earlier collision with Ireland goalkeeper Courtney Brosnan, but the knee injury casts doubt over her participation in the tournament.
“If there was any slight chance that she should have not been back on the field we were gonna keep her off, but she felt good,” Andonovski said.
“Everything was fine, so it wasn´t a head or a brain injury or anything.”