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The U.S move on to the round of 16 after beating Chile 3-0

After the thrashing of Thailand with a score of 13-0 in their first game in the World Cup, the United States Women’s National team has already made waves across the nation. Taking criticism from former players and bitter twitter users, the women endured critiques for their celebrations as they were considered unsportsmanlike.

Not only did the USWNT spark debate about celebrating goals and when and how it’s okay to do so, the team’s performance also created a trending discussion on equal pay. As 2015 Women’s World Cup, which broadcasted the USWNT win over Japan 5-2, became the most watched soccer game in American history for both men and women. It begs the question why, if these women are out performing the men on all levels, are they not being paid equally to them? Looking to play Chile in their second game of the tournament, there’s no doubt that the U.S will continue to spark conversations and show that they are, in fact, the best team in the world who deserve equal pay.

Starting Line up: Alyssa Naeher (1), Tierna Davidson (12), Becky Sauerbrunn (4), Abby Dahlkemper (7), Ali Krieger (11), Lindsey Horan (9), Julie Ertz (8), Morgan Brian (6), Christen Press (23), Carli Lloyd (10), Mallory Pugh (2)

First half: With only two players in the starting line up who started in the previous game, The USWNT would take a different approach in their lineup against Chile. In the 11th minute, Carli Lloyd would go on to score the game’s first goal off a volley from a cross by Abby Dahlkemper deflected by a defender into the path of Lloyd. Like the Thailand game, the U.S dominated possession and looked good up until the 21st minute when Chile received a free kick in their attacking third. Keeping a high line, Chile sends the ball over the backline of the U.S as a player from Chile runs in behind the ball. Going for the ball U.S goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher completely misses the ball as it ends up rolling into the back of the net. This would have been the first goal the U.S had conceded in the tournament if it weren’t for the fact that the goal was called offsides. In the 25th minute, midfielder Julie Ertz scores a near post header off a corner taken from the young World Cup debutant Tierna Davidson. In the 34th minute, much like the second goal, Carli Lloyd grabs her brace as she scores from a header off a corner yet again taken by Davidson.

Second half: Though there were no goals in the second half, the next 45 minutes saw spectacular goalkeeping from Chile’s goalkeeper Christiane Endler who had six saves and denied the U.S of a goal in the second half. Without her performance, the score could have been at least 6-0. The second half also saw Jessica McDonald, Alli Long and Emily Sonnet take the field making their World Cup debut. In the 80th minute, the U.S was awarded a penalty after a tackle was reviewed by VAR during a free kick. Stepping up to take the penalty, captain Carli Lloyd shot into the bottom left corner. The ball went wide and the U.S failed again to grab a goal this half.

Overall Performance: Again, the U.S proved their potency in the attacking third and showed that at 36, Carli Lloyd is still one of the best soccer players in the world. The U.S continued to move and possess the ball and created threatening opportunities for their opponent. Facing Sweden in their third and final group stage match, this game will be an important one as it’s not only a timeless rivalry, but the determining factor in who will win the group, and ultimately face home team France.

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