The United States women's national team has punched their ticket for the round of 16 following a 3-0 victory over Chile on Sunday in Paris, France. With just one group stage match left at the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup, the Americans are currently leading Group F. They will play Sweden on Thursday evening to determine which team finishes first in the group. Chile will face off against Thailand, and either team is still technically in the running for a spot in the knockout round if they can get a good enough result.
The United States got out on the attack early, with three shots taken in the first four minutes of play. Morgan Brian had the first attempt from close range, but she skied it over the bar. Then Carli Lloyd followed it up with two shots; one from distance where she slipped, and a second that deflected off of a Chilean defender before being bounced back out to her, but Christiane Endler was able to corral the slow-rolling shot.
The first goal of the match was scored by Lloyd in the 12th minute of play. The ball was sent into the box, and Chile defender Su Helen Galaz was in position to clear it. Unfortunately for Chile, her clearance came just to the middle of the box and Lloyd was able to hit it off the bounce into the goal.
The next two goals both came off corner kicked taken from the right side of the USA offense by defender Tierna Davidson. The first, in the 26th minute, was headed in from the center of the box by midfielder Julie Ertz. The second, in the 35th minute, was headed in from the far post by Lloyd for her second goal of the match.
Second half substitute Jess McDonald had a good shot on goal from the left side about 15 minutes into the half, but her curling ball pinged off the post and out of frame.
Then it was back to saving shots for Endler, who denied a beautiful header from Press in the 66th minute.
In the 72nd minute, Lloyd made a headed attempt at the hat trick, but she was denied by the crossbar and it looked like Endler had the shot covered regardless.
Lloyd had a penalty opportunity in the 81st minute after a VAR review determined that Allie Long had been taken down in the box on the free kick. She missed the shot wide left, though, and the scoreline remained at 3-0.
The rest of the time dribbled away with both teams in a pretty equal position. Chile got into the attack a few times, but they never tested USA goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher. Similarly, Endler was not forced to make a save for the duration of the match.
The United States will play Sweden in their final group stage match to determine who is the winner of Group F. Chile will face off against Thailand, who is also winless. Sweden and the USA each have six points.
USA Starting XI: Naeher; Becky Sauerbrunn, Abby Dahlkemper (Emily Sonnett, min. 82), Davidson, Ali Krieger; Brian, Ertz (McDonald, min. 46), Horan (Long, min. 59); Press, Lloyd, Mallory Pugh
Chile Starting XI: Endler; Carla Gurrero, Francisca Lara, Galaz, Javiera Toro, Camila Saez; Claudia Soto, Karen Araya, Rosario Balmaceda; Maria Jose Urrutia, Daniela Zamora