Welcome to your live thread for the Concacaf Olympic Qualifying Tournament final match-up between the United States Women's National Team and Canada at Dignity Health Sports Park in Carson, CA. Both teams have already clinched a berth in the 2020 Olympics in Japan but the teams will square off today in search of the tournament title.
The USWNT got to this point with a perfect Group A sweep of Haiti, Panama, and Costa Rica, beating the three teams by a combined 18-0. The Yanks then dropped a stubborn Mexico side 4-0 in the semifinal round.
Canada also swept through its competition in this tournament, winning Group B over St. Kitts & Nevis, Jamaica, and Mexico with a spotless 3-0 record, outscoring those teams by a combined 22-0. The Canadians then squeaked by Costa Rica 1-0 in the semifinals on a goal by Jordyn Huitema, who has scored seven times in this tournament — with five of those coming against Jamaica in a 9-0 win. Huitema, all-time leading goal scorer Christine Sinclair, and Janine Beckie (hat trick scorer against Jamaica) will require particular attention from the U.S. defense today.
This is the fourth straight time the USWNT and Canada will meet in the Olympic Qualifying tournament final. The USWNT holds a 49-3-7 advantage in the all-time series and the teams last met in the 2018 Concacaf championship match during World Cup qualifying, with the U.S. winning 2-0 on goals by Rose Lavelle and Alex Morgan. The United States did not allow a goal in that tournament and the Yanks will try to duplicate that feat today.
Speaking of feats, Christen Press has scored in six consecutive matches for the USWNT and will look to run that streak to seven today. Press has made a strong bid to take over one of the USWNT’s starting forward spots moving forward as she’s been in top form and has frankly outplayed the likes of Megan Rapinoe, Tobin Heath, and Carli Lloyd in 2020.
The USWNT is 23-0-3 since losing at France on Jan. 19 of last year. The U.S. has breezed through Concacaf Olympic qualifying historically, posting a record of 22-0-1 while outscoring opponents 120-3. The lone draw was a 1-1 final against Canada in the 2008 title game and the USWNT went on to win the ensuing penalty shootout.
The USWNT squad features three members of the Orlando Pride — goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris and defenders Ali Krieger and Emily Sonnett. Krieger and Sonnett played all 90 minutes on Monday but they may be in the lineup tonight with an eye on keeping the starters fresh for a potential final clash with Canada on Sunday. Alex Morgan is pretty far along in her pregnancy and is not expected to be available until at least the pre-Olympic camp.
Canada, meanwhile, features Pride defender Shelina Zadorsky, who has a goal in this tournament.
Defenders (6): 7-Abby Dahlkemper (North Carolina Courage; 57/0), 19-Crystal Dunn (North Carolina Courage; 100/24), 11-Ali Krieger (Orlando Pride; 106/1), 5-Kelley O’Hara (Utah Royals FC; 128/2), 4-Becky Sauerbrunn (Utah Royals FC; 174/0), 2-Emily Sonnett (Orlando Pride; 43/0).
Midfielders (5): 8-Julie Ertz (Chicago Red Stars; 98/19), 9-Lindsey Horan (Portland Thorns FC; 82/17), 16-Rose Lavelle (Washington Spirit; 41/12), 3-Samantha Mewis (North Carolina Courage; 63/18), 6-Andi Sullivan (Washington Spirit; 16/0).
Forwards (6): 17-Tobin Heath (Portland Thorns FC; 165/33), 10-Carli Lloyd (Sky Blue FC; 291/122), 14-Jessica McDonald (North Carolina Courage; 16/4), 20-Christen Press (Utah Royals FC; 134/56), 15-Megan Rapinoe (Reign FC; 164/50), 13-Lynn Williams (North Carolina Courage; 24/8).
Goalkeepers (3): 1-Stephanie Labbe (North Carolina Courage), 18-Kailen Sheridan (Sky Blue FC), 20-Sabrina D’Angelo (Vittsjö / SWE).
Defenders (6): 2-Allysha Chapman (Houston Dash), 3-Kadeisha Buchanan (Olympique Lyonnais / FRA), 4-Shelina Zadorsky (Orlando Pride), 5-Rebecca Quinn (Reign FC), 8-Jayde Riviere (University of Michigan), 10-Ashley Lawrence (Paris Saint-Germain / FRA).
Midfielders (5): 7-Julia Grosso (University of Texas), 11-Desiree Scott (Utah Royals FC), 13-Sophie Schmidt (Houston Dash), 14-Gabrielle Carle (Florida State University), 17-Jessie Fleming (UCLA),
Forwards (6): 6-Deanne Rose (University of Florida), 9-Jordyn Huitema (Paris Saint-Germain / FRA), 12-Christine Sinclair (Portland Thorns), 15-Nichelle Prince (Houston Dash), 19-Adriana Leon (West Ham United / ENG), 16-Janine Beckie (Manchester City).
How to Watch
Match Time: 6 p.m. (ET).
Venue: Dignity Heath Sports Park — Carson, CA.
Streaming: FOX Sports GO.