HARRISON, N.J. — Two weeks from today, Crystal Dunn will play her first official game for the Chelsea Ladies FC when it hosts the Doncaster Rovers Belles in the fifth round of the English Women’s FA Cup.
Saturday night, the Rockville Centre native got a taste of what it will be like playing in England in the SheBelieves Cup at Red Bull Arena. Dunn signed with Chelsea in January.
“My shoelaces were untied and a couple of them were like, ‘Hey, your shoes laces are untied’ and I was like, ‘Are you trying to distract me here?’ So we had a couple of laughs,” Dunn said after the United States’ 1-0 loss to England. “They were definitely trying to psyche me out a bit.”
It didn’t work because Dunn was one of the Americans’ most dangerous players. The one-time South Side High School star set up Rose Lavelle’s close-range attempt that was saved in the 19th minute, had a shot stopped in the 41st minute and fired wide right in the 57th minute.
England coach Mark Sampson had no doubt that Dunn will be a force to be reckoned with.
“She’ll do bloody well,” he said. “She’s a world class talent. She’s a finisher. She’s dribbler. She’s an impact player. Any time you are a coach in you want a player who can make a difference and can score a goal.”
Former Northport High School standout Allie Long also played, replacing Samantha Mewis in the 77th minute.