Top teams play draws

GUANGZHOU - The United States drew 1-1 with England and defending World Cup champions Germany drew 0-0 with China yesterday in the second round of matches in the Four Nations women's soccer tournament.

GUANGZHOU - The United States drew 1-1 with England and defending World Cup champions Germany drew 0-0 with China yesterday in the second round of matches in the Four Nations women's soccer tournament.

The Americans went ahead 1-0 on Heather O'Reilly's header in the 17th, but England equalised in the 47th on a strike by Alexandra Scott.

Germany's match was overshadowed hours earlier by an injury to their No 1 goalkeeper, 35-year-old Silke Rottenberg. She twisted her left knee in practice on Saturday, which could put her in doubt for the World Cup in seven and a half months in China.

She has played 123 times for Germany.

"We were totally shocked by the injury," Germany coach Silvia Neid said.

"We think that she will be ready for the World Cup, and she has time to recover." Stephanie Ullrich took her place.

The Americans, ranked No 2 in the world behind Germany, failed to outclass No 12 England. Like Germany, the Americans have left about a half dozen key players home who might be starting later this year in the World Cup.

O'Reilly's goal - her ninth for the United States - came off a pass from Natasha Kai.

Those two are among several candidates to fill a third striker spot behind Kristina Lilly and Abby Wambach.

Scott's equaliser for England came off a loose ball, with the right back driving it behind American keeper Briana Scurry.

It was Scott's fifth goal for the national team.

No 1-ranked Germany had most of the chances in the 0-0 draw with No 9-ranked China.

Germany players Martina Muller, Conny Pohlers and Fatmire Bajramaj all had shots to win the game, but were stopped by China goalkeeper Han Wenxia.

The tournament's final games are set for tomorrow with England playing Germany and China facing the United States.- Sapa-AP

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