Welcome to your live thread for today’s World Cup final between the United States Women's National Team and the Netherlands at the Stade de Lyon (11 a.m. ET, FOX, Telemundo). This is it. The United States must avoid a letdown after beating the world’s third- and fourth-ranked teams in the last two knockout games in order to repeat as World Cup champions and earn a fourth star for the crest. The Netherlands will, of course, be gunning for the upset.
The USWNT is 6-1-0 in the all-time series, most recently winning 3-1 in Atlanta on Sept. 18, 2016. The Oranje took an early lead in that contest on a goal by Shanice van de Sanden, but the U.S. equalized through Carli Lloyd prior to halftime. An own goal by Netherlands defender Mandy van den Berg put the U.S. in front and Allie Long finished off the game for the Yanks.
The Netherlands won the first meeting, 4-3, back in 1991. The U.S. has won six straight since then but entering today the teams have met only three times since the turn of the century. The Dutch made it out of the group stage in the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup, but were knocked out in the Round of 16 by Japan, 2-1. They’ve been sharp in 2019 — their second ever appearance in the competition. The Netherlands has gone 6-0-0, winning Group E.
FIFA’s eighth-ranked team in the world, the Oranje began the tournament with a 1-0 win over Tom Sermanni’s New Zealand side, but needed a stoppage-time goal from midfielder Jill Roord to do it. They went on to beat Cameroon, 3-1, and then nipped Canada, 2-1 to finish atop the group.
In the Round of 16, the Netherlands needed a penalty in the 90th minute to slip by Japan, 2-1, before handling Italy, 2-0 in the quarterfinals. The semifinal match-up against Sweden was a tense affair, with the Dutch eventually prevailing 1-0 after extra time, thanks to a 99th-minute strike by Jackie Groenen.
The player to watch will be Lieke Martens if she can recover from a foot injury to participate in the game. The best player in Euro 2017, Martens scored both her team’s goals in the win over Japan. She played 45 minutes in the semifinal against Sweden. But the Netherlands also boasts Vivianne Miedema, who finally got the breakthrough goal against Italy in the 70th minute. Miedema also scored twice in the win over Cameroon. The 22-year-old has 61 international goals in just 81 caps, so her finishing rate has been incredible for the Dutch.
If you’ve watched teams rough up Orlando Pride striker Alex Morgan in this tournament, it’s probably going to continue. Look for Sherida Spitse to match up against Morgan for the Netherlands. Morgan finally scored her first post-Thailand goal in the semifinal, and enters today leading the race for the Golden Boot.
The U.S. will need to be more sound defensively than in recent games. After not conceding in group play, the Yanks have allowed a goal in each knockout stage match and needed a penalty save and a goal pulled back by video review to prevent more. The Dutch have conceded three times in the tournament but have shut out their last two opponents. The Yanks will test the Netherlands. With nine different goal scorers in this tournament, only the 1999 USWNT and the 2003 German team have had more — both with 10.
The USWNT will hope Megan Rapinoe is healthy and good to go after nursing a bit of a hamstring issue and missing the semifinal against England. If she plays, she could swipe the Golden Boot from Morgan. If she can’t go, Christen Press, who played extremely well against the Lionesses and scored the opening goal, will be the likely replacement.
Goalkeepers (3): 21-Adrianna Franch (Portland Thorns FC; 1/0), 18-Ashlyn Harris (Orlando Pride; 21/0), 1-Alyssa Naeher (Chicago Red Stars; 52/0).
DEFENDERS (7): 7-Abby Dahlkemper (North Carolina Courage; 46/0), 12-Tierna Davidson (Chicago Red Stars; 21/1), 19-Crystal Dunn (North Carolina Courage; 90/24), 11-Ali Krieger (Orlando Pride; 102/1), 5-Kelley O’Hara (Utah Royals FC; 123/2), 4-Becky Sauerbrunn (Utah Royals FC; 163/0), 14-Emily Sonnett (Portland Thorns FC; 34/0).
Midfielders (6): 6-Morgan Brian (Chicago Red Stars; 83/6), 8-Julie Ertz (Chicago Red Stars; 87/19), 9-Lindsey Horan (Portland Thorns FC; 74/10), 16-Rose Lavelle (Washington Spirit; 32/9), 20-Allie Long (Reign FC; 46/6), 3-Samantha Mewis (North Carolina Courage; 55/14).
Forwards (7): 17-Tobin Heath (Portland Thorns FC; 155/30); 10-Carli Lloyd (Sky Blue FC; 280/113), 22-Jessica McDonald (North Carolina Courage; 8/2), 13-Alex Morgan (Orlando Pride; 168/107), 23-Christen Press (Utah Royals FC; 122/49), 2-Mallory Pugh (Washington Spirit; 56/17), 15-Megan Rapinoe (Seattle Reign FC; 159/47).
Goalkeepers (3): 1-Sari van Veenendaal (Arsenal, ENG), 16-Lize Kop (Ajax), 23-Loes Geurts (Goteborg, SWE).
Defenders (8): 2-Desiree van Lunteren (Freiburg, GER), 3-Stefanie van der Gragt (Barcelona, SPA), 4-Merel van Dongen (Real Betis, SPA), 5-Kika van Es (Ajax), 6-Anouk Dekker (Montpellier, FRA), 18-Danique Kerkdijk (Bristol City, ENG), 20-Dominique Bloodworth (Vfl Wolfsburg, GER), 22-Liza van der Most (Ajax).
Midfielders (6): 8-Sherida Spitse (Valerenga, NOR), 10-Danielle van de Donk (Arsenal, ENG), 12-Victoria Pelova (Ajax), 14-Jackie Groenen (Manchester United, ENG), 15-Inessa Kaagman (Everton, ENG), 19-Jill Roord (Arsenal, ENG).
Forwards (6): 7-Shanice van de Sanden (Lyon, FRA), 9-Vivianne Miedema (Arsenal, ENG) ,11-Lieke Martens (Barcelona, SPA), 13-Renate Jansen (Twente), 17-Ellen Jansen (Ajax), 21-Lineth Beerensteyn (Bayern Munich, GER).
How to Watch
Match Time: 11 a.m. (ET).
Venue: Stade de Lyon — Décines-Charpieu, France.
TV: FOX, Telemundo.
Streaming: FOX Sports GO, fuboTV, Telemundo Deportes En Vivo, NBC Sports Live Extra app.
Twitter: For rapid reaction and live updates, follow @StarsStripesFC, @USWNT, and @TheManeLand.
Match Thread Rules
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Enjoy the match. Go America!