Welcome to your live thread for the United States Women's National Team’s second of three matches in the second iteration of the Tournament of Nations. The USWNT faces Australia (7 p.m. ET, FS1). as Alex Morgan and Ashlyn Harris will face Orlando Pride teammates Alanna Kennedy and Emily van Egmond in East Hartford, CT. Brazil will take on Japan in the early game.
Australia won the inaugural Tournament of Nations last year in large part due to the Matildas’ 1-0 win over the United States in the opener. Tameka Butt’s second-half goal was the only scoring in the match at Seattle’s CenturyLink Field. That was the last meeting between the two nations, as the USWNT now holds a 25-1-2 record in the all-time series. The United States went 2-1-0 in last year’s ToN. The Aussies went 3-0-0.
This tournament will allow Jill Ellis another challenging tuneup for World Cup qualifying, with only a pair of friendlies against Chile remaining between the ToN and the Concacaf Championship.
The Aussies are the world’s No. 8 team according to the latest FIFA rankings. Australia has already qualified for the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup in France after finishing second in the Asian Cup. The defending ToN champions opened up their defense with a 3-1 win over Brazil in the opener on Thursday, getting an own goal along with strikes from Butt and Sam Kerr. Brazil avoided a shutout when Marta set up a Debhina goal in the 79th minute.
Last year, the U.S. struggled to break down the Australians in the final third. The Yanks must solve the Aussie defense, led by Kennedy and backstopped by goalkeeper Lydia Williams. Australia’s defense is also helped by the team winning balls in the midfield and holding possession. On the other end of the pitch, the U.S. defense will need to contain Kerr, one of the world’s most dominant players and most dangerous goal scorers over the past year.
The United States will need to take its chances when they come, as they did in the 4-2 opening win over Japan, in which Morgan scored her fourth career hat trick. However, the defense cannot be as leaky against the Matildas as it was on Thursday vs. Japan. The Nadeshiko scored twice and perhaps could have had more. Kerr and the Australians will punish those kinds of mistakes with more clinical finishing than the Japanese offered on Thursday in Kansas City.
Defenders (6): 7- Abby Dahlkemper (NC Courage; 20/0), 12- Tierna Davidson (Stanford; 9/0), 11- Merritt Mathias (NC Courage; 1/0), 4- Becky Sauerbrunn (Utah Royals FC; 139/0), 14- Casey Short (Chicago Red Stars; 22/0), 22- Emily Sonnett (Portland Thorns FC; 18/0).
Midfielders (8): 6- Morgan Brian (Chicago Red Stars; 76/6), 2- Julie Ertz (Chicago Red Stars; 62/15); 9- Lindsey Horan (Portland Thorns FC; 52/5), 16- Rose Lavelle (Washington Spirit; 9/2), 10- Carli Lloyd (Sky Blue FC; 255/100); 3- Samantha Mewis (NC Courage; 37/7); 20- Allie Long (Seattle Reign FC; 39/6), 5- McCall Zerboni (NC Courage; 3/0).
Forwards (6): 19- Crystal Dunn (NC Courage; 65/23), 17- Tobin Heath (Portland Thorns; 134/19), 13- Alex Morgan (Orlando Pride; 143/89), 23- Christen Press (Utah Royals FC; 101/44), 15- Megan Rapinoe (Seattle Reign; 138/38), 8- Amy Rodriguez (Utah Royals FC; 131/30).
Goalkeepers (2): Mackenzie Arnold (Arna-Bjørnar Fotball, Norway), Lydia Williams (Seattle Reign FC).
Defenders (6): Ellie Carpenter (Portland Thorns FC), Steph Catley (Seattle Reign FC), Larissa Crummer (unattached), Elise Kellond-Knight (Hammarby IF, Sweden), Alanna Kennedy (Orlando Pride), Clare Polkinghorne (Houston Dash).
Midfielders (6): Tameka Butt (Klepp IL, Norway), Alex Chidiac (Atletico Madrid, Spain), Katrina Gorry (Utah Royals), Chloe Logarzo (Blacktown Spartans FC, Australia), Amy Sayer (North Shore Mariners FC, Australia), Emily van Egmond (Orlando Pride).
Forwards (6): Lisa De Vanna (South Melbourne FC, Australia), Caitlin Foord (Portland Thorns FC), Emily Gielnik (Brisbane Roar FC, Australia), Sam Kerr (Chicago Red Stars), Hayley Raso (Portland Thorns FC), Kyah Simon (Houston Dash).
How to Watch
Match Time: 7 p.m. (ET).
Venue: Pratt & Whitney Stadium — East Hartford, CT.
Streaming: FOX Sports GO.
Match Thread Rules
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Enjoy the match. Go America!