Welcome to your live thread for the United States Women's National Team against Mexico in the final Send-Off Series game prior to the Yanks heading to France for the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup (12 p.m., ESPN). The USWNT began its World Cup qualifying run against our neighbors to the south last October in the Concacaf Championship and now the teams will square off in the Yanks’ final tuneup for the big show.
The U.S. enters today with a 6-1-2 mark in 2019, and is 35-1-1 against Mexico in 37 all-time meetings. That includes the 6-0 U.S. win last October in Cary, NC, in the most recent match-up. Orlando Pride striker Alex Morgan and Megan Rapinoe each scored a brace and the U.S. also got goals from Julie Ertz and Tobin Heath. The U.S. and Mexico also played a pair of friendlies in April of last year, when the Yanks won, 4-1, and 6-2, in Jacksonville and Houston, respectively. Morgan scored four of the Yanks’ 10 goals in that pair of friendlies.
Mexico’s only win in the series came in 2011 Women’s World Cup qualifying — a 2-1 final that forced the United States to win the Concacaf third-place match and then a two-leg playoff against Italy to qualify for the World Cup in Germany.
Today’s match takes place at Red Bull Arena in Harrison, NJ. New Jersey product Carli Lloyd has been on a tear for the U.S. in recent matches, and she’ll want to continue to demonstrate that form heading toward France.
Mónica Ocampo and Sky Blue FC’s Katie Johnson were among the top threats for Mexico in last year’s Concacaf Championship, but neither is with the team for this friendly. Head Coach Christopher Cuéllar is getting a good look at some other players in the talent pool. Nine players of the 20 on the roster are age 21 or younger and only six players have 10 or more caps, led by defender Kenti Robles’ 62.
Mexico, which sits 26th in FIFA’s current world rankings. The Tricolores are a program on the rise but still have a way to go to join the world’s top tier. They failed to qualify for the 2019 World Cup after finishing third in Group A in the 2018 Concacaf Women’s Championship. Mexico fell to the U.S. and Panama in group play, beating only Trinidad & Tobago and going 1-2-0 in the tournament. Subsequently, the U.S. and Panama went to the knockout round, where the Yanks and Canada qualified for the World Cup by reaching the tournament final (won by the U.S., 2-0) and Jamaica advanced on penalties after drawing Panama.
Once again, I don’t expect Mexico to threaten the U.S. too much. This is a game the United States should win handily, although it may take until late in the first half or even into the second half to wear down the visitors. Then again, you never know what might happen when the ball is kicked.
Defenders (7): 7-Abby Dahlkemper (North Carolina Courage; 39/0), 12-Tierna Davidson (Chicago Red Stars; 20/1); 19-Crystal Dunn (North Carolina Courage; 84/24), 11-Ali Krieger (Orlando Pride; 100/1), Kelley O’Hara (Utah Royals FC; 117/2), 4-Becky Sauerbrunn (Utah Royals FC; 157/0), 14-Emily Sonnett (Portland Thorns FC; 32/0).
Midfielders (6): 6-Morgan Brian (Chicago Red Stars; 82/6), 8-Julie Ertz (Chicago Red Stars; 81/18), 9-Lindsey Horan (Portland Thorns FC; 67/8), 16-Rose Lavelle (Washington Spirit; 26/7), 20-Allie Long (Reign FC; 44/6), 3-Samantha Mewis (North Carolina Courage; 49/12).
Forwards (7): 17-Tobin Heath (Portland Thorns FC; 149/29); 10-Carli Lloyd (Sky Blue FC; 273/110), 22-Jessica McDonald (North Carolina Courage; 7/2), 13-Alex Morgan (Orlando Pride; 162/101), 23-Christen Press (Utah Royals FC; 115/47), 2-Mallory Pugh (Washington Spirit; 52/15), 15-Megan Rapinoe (Seattle Reign FC; 152/44).
Goalkeepers (2): 1-Cecilia Santiago (América), 12-Emily Alvarado (TCU, USA).
Defenders (7): 2-Kenti Robles (Atlético de Madrid, Spain), 3-Jocelyn Orejel (CSFA Ambilly, France), 4-Rebeca Bernal (Monterrey), 5-Jimena Lopez (Texas A&M, USA), 13-Arianna Romero (Houston Dash, USA), 15-Karen Diaz (Pachuca), 19-Andrea Sanchez (Guadalajara).
Midfielders (8): 6-Karla Nieto (Pachuca), 8-Joana Robles (Atlas), 11-Lizbeth Ovalle (UANL), 14-Belén Cruz (UANL), 16-Zulma Hernández (América), 17-Yamilé Franco (León), 18-Alexia Delgado (Arizona State University, USA), 20-Dinora Garza (Monterrey).
Forwards (3): 7-Daniela Espinosa (América), 9-Kiana Palacios (Real Sociedad, Spain), 10-Katty Martínez (UANL).
How to Watch
Match Time: 12 p.m. (ET).
Venue: Red Bull Arena — Harrison, NJ.
TV: ESPN, Univision Deportes.
Match Thread Rules
This is your live thread for posting comments on the match. So use our comments section below to talk about the game in real time with other supporters. If you’re new, welcome to our happy home! While you’re here, please observe a few basic rules:
- Absolutely no links to illegal streams. They can get us in trouble, and no one wants that.
- Try not to be the person who spews nothing but venom and hate for the team. It’s OK to be critical, and, let’s face it, sometimes even the best teams can be frustrating to watch, but being overly negative relentlessly can sap the enjoyment for others.
- Keep it somewhat clean and fair when criticizing players / officials. You never know who might be reading.
- Do unto others in the match thread, the way you would have others do unto you. We are a fun community and want to keep it this way. We have a moderator, but we’d rather let him enjoy the game instead of having to play babysitter.
Enjoy the match! Go America!