USWNT Wins SheBelieves Cup Against Argentina

United+States+Women%27s+National+Soccer+Team+has+won+the+SheBelieves+Cup+in+2020%2C+2018%2C+and+in+2016.+They+also+have+won+the+Women%27s+World+Cup+four+times+in+1991%2C+1999%2C+2015%2C+and+2019.

Photo Courtesy by Sports Illustrated via si.com

United States Women’s National Soccer Team has won the SheBelieves Cup in 2020, 2018, and in 2016. They also have won the Women’s World Cup four times in 1991, 1999, 2015, and 2019.

Winning their first two games against Canada and Brazil, United States took on Argentina on February 24, for their final game in the tournament. Champions in 2020, USWNT push through to defend their title. Switching the lineup, Kristen Mewis (22), sister of USWNT and Manchester City player Sam Mewis and Casey Krueger (2) start in the first 11 for their first time. Jane Campbell (18), Kelley O’Hara (5) and Tierna Davidson (12) also start their first minutes within the tournament. With Argentina in last place, USWNT had many expectations within the game.

Final Game Commences

Starting the half, United States pressure onto Argentina’s back. Only 40 seconds in, Argentina midfielder Daiana Falfan (20) makes an easy cross to Yamila Rodriguez (11). Rodriguez chasing the ball into the 18-yard box for a shot, but Keeper Campbell (18) retrieves it first.  Playing higher up, Argentina attempts to capitalize on United States mistakes to push forward. 2’, United States gets their first attack to goal. Defender Krueger (2) gives a low ball to Carly Lloyd (10) down the line to cross but saved by Argentina. With a taste of the attack, U.S. continues to keep possession. Pushing towards goal, Argentina slowly starts backing into defensive mode. With a quick recovery, Argentina struggles to keep the same energy with The States on their back.

15’, a game of hot potato is played between Argentina and the U.S. Argentina clears the ball to Rodriguez, but Christen Press (23) blocks her possession ending in a collision between the two players. No foul called, Rose Lavelle (16) collects the ball from the middle and quickly distributes a cross up top. Forward and 2019 Ballon d’Or Fémenin winner Megan Rapinoe comes out from the shadows. She runs towards the center of the 18-yard box to receives Lavelle’s cross. With one bounce, she shoots passed Pereya to the lower right corner of the goal, gaining a point for U.S.

Megan Rapinoe is the lead scorer in the 2021 SheBelieves Cup. She is also the first player to score more than two goals in a SheBelieves Cup. (Mimi Castellanos / El Paisano Media)

United States Haul Forward

With the States leading the game, they get hungry for more. Two minutes later, Rapinoe makes a cross from left to right post. O’ Hara runs to collect the ball with Argentina marking her. She does a quick stepover to square back to goal. O’Hara makes her final cross with her left foot to the center of the box. Mewis running to finish the cross, she redirects a header towards the net but misses skimming the goal wide. 20’ U.S. tries another through ball but was deflected giving Argentinian Romina Nuñez (18) a chance to distribute to Rodriguez. Nuñez makes an overlap run giving Rodriguez the space to pass to the center. Collecting Rodriguez’ center pass, Soledad Jaimes (9) follows with another through ball to Nuñez but was cut by miscommunication between Argentina.

25’ O’Hara makes a quick pass to Press in the center. Press collects a pushes a through ball to Lloyd. Splitting the Argentina defense line, Lloyd goes 1 v. 1 with the keeper with Rapinoe supporting. She slips a low cross to Rapinoe and she finishes into the open net. United States leads with 2-0.

Argentina feeling beat down, they begin to slow their game pace. 34’, U.S. defensive line plays high into Argentina territory. Davidson makes a quick pass to Rapinoe, Rapinoe flicks it to Mewis down the line. Mewis cuts to the goal giving a cross to Lloyd at Lloyd finishes 3-0 for United States. Five minutes left before the end of the first half, a short clearance from Argentina gave the USWNT another opportunity. Back in possession, Kreuger collects the ball giving a short distribution to Mewis. Mewis makes a clean turn and shot to the lower right corner. U.S takes the 4-0 lead finishing first half.

Winning It All

Start if the second half, new mother Alex Morgan (13) substitutes in for Carly Lloyd. Lindsey Horan (9) and Margaret “Midge” Purce (20) sub. for Rose Lavelle and Casey Kreuger. Argentina makes one sub. for Nuñez while Eliana Stabile (3) takes her place. Second half starts off slow for Argentina as United States fresh legs come in to attack. With little to no change in the game, United States keeps continues to attack. Argentina playing from a quick throw in the 83’, it was quickly blocked by the States defense line. Sophia smith (17) who subbed for Rapinoe takes the ball down line looking for options. Smith slides a through ball the Morgan on the top of the box chipping it away from Pereya and into the net. Morgan scores her first goal as a new mom.

85’ the States collect their ball from the back distributing it wide to press. Press gives a 1-2 pass with Horan towards center field. Press connects with Purce, and Purce to Smith down the line. Smith makes a pass to Mewis in the box but is blocked by Argentina. They attempt the play again crossing it further to Morgan. Morgan makes an inside turn and shoots getting deflected again by Argentina, gaining a corner. Mewis takes the corner up wide, Horan heads it back into the box for Press to finish with a header back post goal. United States wins their final game 6-0.

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