By Chris Wright
Having gone 2-1 down to a second, offside Marta goal (the first was an incredibly dodgy re-taken penalty) at the start of extra-time, USWNT veteran Abby Wambach finally pulled her side back from the brink in dramatic fashion – rising at the back stick to nod home Megan Rapinoe’s arcing cross in the 122nd minute of extra-time to take the tie to penalties…
This was all just after Brazilian midfielder Erika recovered remarkably quickly from the life-threatening spinal injuries that saw her carted from the field tethered to a stretcher…
Any road up, the US then went on to exact full revenge by winning the shootout 5-3, with Hope Solo saving from Daiane and Rapinoe and Alex Krieger (who nearly died in 2006 after suffering several heart attacks) stepping up and duly wrapping up preceedings for the Yankettes in Dresden.
The States will now play France – who beat England on penalties in the last eight – in the semi-finals on Wednesday evening.