Welcome to your live thread for the United States Women's National Team’s first match in the second iteration of the Tournament of Nations. The USWNT faces Japan (7 p.m. ET, FS1), the only team in the competition that won’t force Alex Morgan and Ashlyn Harris to face their Orlando Pride teammates. Brazil and Australia kick off the event in the early game at Children’s Mercy Park in Kansas City, KS, starting at 4:15 p.m. ET.
The U.S. last played in mid-June, winning a pair of close friendlies against China. This tournament will allow Jill Ellis another challenging tuneup for World Cup qualifying, with only a pair of friendlies remaining between the ToN and the Concacaf Championship. Ellis’ side finished second in this tournament last year due to a 1-0 loss to Australia — the eventual event winner. The United States went 2-1-0 in last year’s ToN.
The USWNT and Japan have not met since this fixture in last year’s Tournament of Nations, with the U.S. winning 3-0 on goals by Megan Rapinoe, Mallory Pugh, and Morgan. That game took place at the StubHub Center in Carson, CA. Japan finished third in the event, going 0-2-1. The U.S. is 27-1-7 in the all-time series against the Japanese, with an 8-0-4 mark on home soil.
The USWNT has gone up against the Nadeshiko in three of the last four world championships (two World Cups and one Olympics). Asako Takakura’s Japan side is No. 6 in the FIFA world rankings — the highest of the three teams the U.S. will face in this tournament (Brazil is No. 7 and Australia is No. 8).
Look for the Japanese to stay well organized and play precise passes for one another. They excel in the fundamental aspects of the game, shielding the ball and winning fouls. The USWNT will need to stay patient and then take their chances when they come. Japan is not to be taken lightly, as the Asian Cup champs and a team already qualified for the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup.
Defenders (6): 7- Abby Dahlkemper (NC Courage; 19/0), 12- Tierna Davidson (Stanford; 8/0), 11- Merritt Mathias (NC Courage; 1/0), 4- Becky Sauerbrunn (Utah Royals FC; 139/0), 14- Casey Short (Chicago Red Stars; 21/0), 22- Emily Sonnett (Portland Thorns FC; 17/0).
Midfielders (8): 6- Morgan Brian (Chicago Red Stars; 75/6), 2- Julie Ertz (Chicago Red Stars; 61/15); 9- Lindsey Horan(Portland Thorns FC; 51/5), 16- Rose Lavelle (Washington Spirit; 8/2), 10- Carli Lloyd (Sky Blue FC; 254/100); 3- Samantha Mewis(NC Courage; 36/7); 20- Allie Long (Seattle Reign FC; 39/6), 5- McCall Zerboni (NC Courage; 2/0).
Forwards (6): 19- Crystal Dunn (NC Courage; 64/23), 17- Tobin Heath (Portland Thorns; 133/19), 13- Alex Morgan (Orlando Pride; 142/86), 23- Christen Press (Utah Royals FC; 100/44), 15- Megan Rapinoe (Seattle Reign; 137/37), 8- Amy Rodriguez (Utah Royals FC; 131/30).
Goalkeepers (3): 1-Sakiko Ikeda (Urawa Red Diamond Ladies), 18-Ayaka Yamashita (NTV Beleza), 21- Chika Hirao (Albirex Niigata Ladies).
Defenders (7): 2-Ruma Utsugi (Seattle Reign FC, USA), 3-Aya Sameshima (INAC Kobe Leonessa), 4-Shiori Miyake (INAC Kobe Leonessa), 6-Saori Ariyoshi (NTV Beleza), 22-Risa Shimizu (NTV Beleza), 23-Aimi Kunitake (Nojima Stella Kanagawa Sagamihara).
Midfielders (8): 7-Emi Nakajima (INAC Kobe Leonessa), 12-Hikaru Naomoto (Sport Club Freiburg, GER), 14-Yui Hasegawa (NTV Beleza), 15-Moeno Sakaguchi (Albirex Niigata Ladies), 16-Rin Sumida (NTV Beleza), 17-Yuka Momiki (NTV Beleza Beleza), 19-Rika Masuya (INAC Kobe Leonessa), 24-Narumi Miura (NTV Beleza).
Forwards (5): 8-Mana Iwabuchi (INAC Kobe Leonessa), 9-Nahomi Kawasumi (Seattle Reign FC, USA), 11-Mina Tanaka (NTV Beleza), 13-Yuika Sugasawa (Urawa Red Diamond Ladies), 20-Kumi Yokoyama (AC Nagano Parceiro Ladies).
How to Watch
Match Time: 7 p.m. (ET).
Venue: Children’s Mercy Park — Kansas City, KS.
Streaming: FOX Sports GO.
Match Thread Rules
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Enjoy the match. Go America!