Welcome to your live thread of tonight's United States Women's National Team match against Canada! The contest is the final of CONCACAF Olympic qualifying and both teams have already locked up their spots in Rio this August.
This will be the toughest test of the tournament by far for either team. These two teams are head and shoulders above the rest of the competition in the region and matches against each other are always quality television viewing.
For the U.S., Alex Morgan and Carli Lloyd have been on fire this tournament. The pride of the Pride, Morgan is coming off a hat trick against Trinidad and Tobago and the two veterans will need to make their presence felt against Canada.
This is also the first real big game for the likes of Crystal Dunn and Lindsey Horan. Looking good against T&T or Costa Rica is one thing, and these youngsters can definitely play, but going up against a side filled with bronze medalists from four years ago and World Cup vets is an entirely different story. The U.S. must control the midfield and utilize Dunn's speed out wide. If Horan can keep things in check in the interior and Dunn can be a menace on the wing, along with Morgan and Lloyd, could spell out a long night for Canada.
It will be interesting to see if coach Jill Ellis gives 17-year-old phenom Mallory Pugh time in this one. The UCLA commit got the start last time out against T&T and getting the nod in a match-up with our neighbors to the north would show just how much of an impact Ellis believes Pugh could have in Rio.
Defensively for the U.S., the focus of the back line will have to be Christine Sinclair as it is every time these two teams square off. The Canadian legend is second on the all-time goals list trailing only Abby Wambach and will certainly be looking to get a bit of revenge on the U.S.. The Stars and Stripes defeated Canada four years ago in Canada during Olympic qualifying before beating the Canadians again in the Olympic semi-finals in what might be the greatest women's soccer game of all time.
These two teams are not fans of each other. This game is a chance for U.S. fans to see the best rivalry in CONCACAF on the women's side in a match that means something. This will be a good game and one U.S. fans won't want to miss.
How to Watch:
Match Time: 5 p.m. ET
Venue: BBVA Compass Stadium -- Houston, TX
TV: Replay on NBCSN at 11 p.m. ET, NBC Universo
Live Stream: NBC Sports Live Extra
Match Thread Rules:
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