Coach fires back at Lloyd’s criticism after World Cup draw

Former USWNT captain Carli Lloyd ripped into the squad for celebrating after a disappointing draw that almost ended in an early exit, but head coach Vlato Andonovski is now firing back at her post-match comments on the FOX broadcast.

Lloyd dismantled the women’s side amid their struggling start, and said they have no business celebrating after being one kick away from elimination.

“I’m just seeing a very lackluster, uninspiring, taking-it-for-granted, where winning and training and doing all that you can to be the best possible individual player is not happening,” Lloyd said after the match on FOX.

Andonovski was having none of her commentary, calling it ‘insane’ that the former star was questioning the team’s desire to win and give it their all.

“The one thing I want to say is that this team wanted to win this game more than anything else,” Andonovski said per ESPN’s Caitlin Murray. “They’ve put everything they could in preparation for this tournament and every game that they go into, so to question the mentality of this team, to question the willingness to win, to compete, I think it’s insane.

Andonovski still acknowledged that the performance hasn’t been quite what he was hoping for through the first three games, and is aware of the changes that desperately need to be made going forward.

“It’s not like we played well by any means. We owned it. We know it’s not good enough. We’re not happy with our performance, but we qualified for the next round. We’re moving on,” the manager concluded.

Andonovski has his work cut out for him as the team joins the knockout stage where they will face a strong Sweden side that has been performing well. The USWNT entered as a massive favorite to win it all as a three-peat, but have now fallen into the third-best odds at +450 after the slow start.