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2015 FIFA Women's World Cup Final: USA vs. Japan - How to Watch, TV Info, Live Stream, Lineups, Preview and More

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It's a winner-take-all, 90-minute battle for the biggest trophy in women's soccer. Can the USWNT avenge the 2011 penalty shootout fiasco and capture the country's third World Cup?

Michael Chow-USA TODAY Sports

Welcome to your open thread for World Cup championship freedom.

The second-ranked United States Women's National Team looks to avenge the 2011 penalty-kick shootout loss to Japan in the first back-to-back Women's World Cup final rematch ever.

You'll recall the heartbreak of 2011. Alex Morgan gave the U.S. a 1-0 lead in the 69th minute, and the Americans seemed on their way to victory until Aya Miyama equalized in the 81st. Tied at 1-1 in extra time, AbbyWambach put the USWNT back on top in the 104th minute. Just three minutes from the Cup, Homare Sawa scored to force penalties. The Americans melted down in the PK shootout, with Shannon Boxx, Carli Lloyd and Tobin Heath all missing on the first three U.S. shots. Japan went on to win the shootout, 3-1.

But let's not dwell on horrible things. The U.S. is playing its best soccer of the tournament over the last two games, and it couldn't come at a better time. Germany was the first time to seriously threaten the back line with any consistency, but even they couldn't score, despite drawing a PK.

The U.S. surprised Germany (and everyone, really) by coming out with five in the midfield and using Morgan as a lone striker. The Americans were able to stretch Germany from sideline to sideline and create space for Morgan to work through the creases in the defense. Morgan Brian was gobbling up every pass that came near her, rewarding coach Jill Ellis for including her in the starting XI.

If the U.S. plays loose and executes in the final third (an area of concern with Morgan on Tuesday night who missed several golden chances), a third World Cup could be coming home across the Canadian border to the USA.

How did we get here?

The U.S. won Group D with a 3-1 victory over Australia, a 0-0 draw vs. Sweden and a 1-0 win over Nigeria. The Yanks then produced knockout-round wins against Colombia (2-0) and China (1-0), before taking out Germany 2-0 in the semifinal round. The U.S. got some breaks in the match (that penalty foul was outside the box, for example) but the Americans were still deserving winners and got the only goal in the run of play.

Japan was its usual economical self in winning Group C with a 3-0-0 record, scoring just four goals but conceding only once, sandwiching 1-0 wins over Switzerland and Ecuador around a 2-1 victory over Cameroon. The Japanese knocked out the Netherlands 2-1 and then dispatched Australia with another 1-0 score line to reach the semis. There, they held a 1-1 tie against England into the 92nd minute (with each team scoring on an undeserved PK) when English defender Laura Bassett accidentally scored a horrific own-goal. Here it is:

It was one stinking miinute from extra time and quite probably would have gone to PKs. Yikes.

The match-Up

The U.S. and Japan met twice in World Cup play prior to 2011, with the U.S. winning both match-ups by a combined score of 7-0. The Americans won 3-0 in the 1991 group stage meeting before going on to win the World Cup. The Americans defeated Japan 4-0 in the 1995 quarterfinals, as well.

This probably won't be an offensive showcase. The U.S. has still conceded just once in the tournament and Japan has allowed three goals. The Japanese and Americans are both tough to break down, with the Japanese eager and quick to get numbers behind the ball when the opposition has possession. The Americans like to possess the ball and have Julie Johnston and Becky Sauerbrunn in the back, destroying attackers on sight.

The Japanese just quietly go about their business, which mostly entails getting the ball to Miyama, their maestro and best player, and letting her pull the strings.

Can the U.S. avenge the 2011 penalty-kick shootout loss? Can the Americans score a goal on the stingy Japanese? Will Hope Solo and her back line keep another clean sheet? Who will win and claim the biggest trophy in women's soccer?

We'll find out tonight.

Go America!

And don't forget to vote in our poll below.

Official Lineups:

U.S. Women's National Team (4-2-3-1):

Goalkeeper: Hope Solo

Defenders: Ali Krieger, Julie Johnston, Becky Sauerbrunn, Meghan Klingenberg

Defensive Midfielders: Lauren Holiday, Morgan Brian

Attacking Midfielders: Megan Rapinoe, Carli Lloyd, Tobin Heath

Forwards: Alex Morgan

Japan (4-4-2):

Goalkeeper: Ayumi Kaihori

Defenders: Azusa Iwashimizu,Saki Kumagai, Aya Sameshima, Mizuho Sakaguchi

Midfielders: Aya Miyama, Nahomi Kawasumi, Shnobu Ohno, Rumi Utsugi

Forwards: Yuki Ogimi, Saori Ariyoshi

How to Watch:

Match time: 7 p.m. (ET)

Venue: BC Place -- Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

TV: FOX, Telemundo

Live Stream: FOX Soccer 2GO USA

Twitter: For rapid reaction and live updates, follow along with @StarsStripesFC or via @ussoccer.

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