ST. PAUL, Minnesota (Sept. 3, 2019) – The U.S. Women’s National Team continued its 2019 Victory Tour presented by Allstate with a commanding 3-0 win against Portugal before a sellout crowd of 19,600 at Allianz Field. Carli Lloyd led a rampant U.S. attack by registering her 20th career multi-goal game as she scored two first half goals to set the USA on the path to victory. Lindsey Horan’s goal in the final minutes capped what was USWNT head coach Jill Ellis’ 105th career win in charge of the team, a mark that ties her with the late great Tony DiCicco for the most in program history.
The USA once again put on an impressive display, amassing more than 60 percent possession on nearly 500 passes, while out-shooting the visitors 21-1. An invigorated Portugal defense that played very low and compact held out longer than in the teams’ recent record-breaking encounter in Philadelphia before conceding the first goal just after the 20-minute mark.
Lloyd tucked in the game’s first goal in the 22nd minute after a wild scramble in front of the net that was set off by a Julie Ertz cross that was partially cleared and then mishit back into danger by a Portugal defender. Lloyd’s initial attempt to convert the misplayed ball was bravely saved by Portugal goalkeeper Ines Pereira before falling for Jessica McDonald to have a go but her attempt was also thwarted by Pereira. The lose ball then fell to Lloyd who made no mistake from close range to make it 1-0.
From the ensuing kickoff, the U.S. won the ball back and drove upfield where McDonald crashed a header off the crossbar. The U.S. attack kept churning out chances as a long-range blast from Samantha Mewis drew a strong save from Pereira near the half-hour mark. She did well to recover in time to then making a second solid stop on Tobin Heath, who was on hand to put the rebound on frame.
Heath then earned the penalty kick as she was chopped down in the left corner of the penalty area after a nifty dribble from which Lloyd bagged her second goal in the 32nd minute. The two talented attackers combined on a quick move into Portugal’s offensive third with Lloyd playing Heath into a one-v-one situation that she used to draw the foul. Lloyd dispatched the spot kick with ease into the upper right side of the net for her 117th career goal.
The game proceeded throughout the second half as it had in the first 45 with substitute Christen Press nearly lifting a shot over Pereira a few minutes into the second half after her great run was rewarded with a beautiful feed from Lloyd.
Press was denied a second time in the 52nd on a thunderous blast from the top of the box before McDonald headed the rebound off the bar for a second time. Ten minutes later it was Horan who rang the bar with a fierce drive from distance. She would not be denied later in the match, but in the intervening minutes, Ellis handed forward Kristen Hamilton her USWNT debut in the 76th minute as she became the 80th player to earn a call-up under the legendary U.S. coach and 29th to receive her first cap.
The U.S. finished the night off with a textbook set-piece goal. Press lofted a corner kick from the right side into the heart of the Portugal box where Horan perfectly timed her run to meet the ball and head it into over the ‘keeper to put an exclamation point on yet the record-tying victory for the USWNT.
Next on the Schedule: The WNT players return to their NWSL clubs and the final push for the playoffs before continuing the Victory Tour next month with two games against Korea Republic. The first match will be played at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte, N.C. on Oct. 3 (8 p.m. ET; FS1, TUDN) and the second at Soldier Field in Chicago on Oct. 6 (2 p.m. CT; ESPN).
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Goal Scoring Rundown:
USA – Carli Lloyd, 22nd minute: A nice team move up the right sideline saw the ball played to Julie Ertz just outside the right side of the penalty area. With a slick move she evaded her defender and launched a cross toward the back post that was cleared toward the top of the box before being mishit by a defender who tried to clear. As the ball dropped to Lloyd, she lined up a volley, but Ines Pereira bravely charged out to block the attempt and then did well to making a leaping save on Jessica McDonald’s follow-up effort from the middle of the box. The rebound again came to Lloyd, who tucked it into the vacated net for the opening goal. USA 1, POR 0 [WATCH]
USA – Carli Lloyd (penalty kick), 32nd minute: Lloyd dropped off the front line to pick up the ball near midfield and charged forward before playing Tobin Heath into a one-v-one near the left side of the box. Heath touched the ball around her defender and was then taken down just inside the top left corner of the area as she moved to get around her marker. Lloyd then sent the ensuing spot kick high into the right side of the net for her second of the match. USA 2, POR 0 [WATCH]
USA – Lindsey Horan (Christen Press), 83rd minute: The WNT won its sixth corner of the game and Press stepped out the right flag to take it, sending a high cross into the center of the Portugal penalty are. Horan timed her run perfectly to meet the ball and smash a powerful header high into the center of the net. USA 3, POR 0 [WATCH] FINAL
With the win, the USWNT improves to 9-0-0 all-time vs. Portugal.
With her two goals, Carli Lloyd now has 117 in her career and is fifth all-time with 20 multi-goal games for the WNT. She has played in 284 games for the USA.
Lindsey Horan’s goal was her fifth of 2019 and 12th of her career.
Kristen Hamilton earned her first WNT cap, coming on as a sub in the 74th minute. She is the 29th player to make her international debut under Jill Ellis.
Ellis now has 105 victories as USWNT head coach, tying the great Tony DiCicco for most all-time as WNT boss.
Christen Press upped hear team leading assist count to 11 in her 20th appearance of the year.
Abby Dahlkemper earned cap No. 50 in her 20th appearance and 19th start this year. She has played the most minutes of anybody on the team in 2019 with 1,607.
- U.S. Women’s National Team Match Report –
Match: U.S. Women’s National Team vs. Portugal
Date: September 3, 2019
Competition: International Friendly
Venue: Allianz Field; St. Paul, Minn.
Attendance: 19,600 (Sell Out)
Kickoff: 7 p.m. ET
Weather: 76 degrees; partly cloudy
Scoring Summary: 1 2 F
USA 2 1 3
POR 0 0 0
USA – Carli Lloyd 22nd minute
USA – Carli Lloyd (Penalty Kick) 32
USA – Lindsey Horan (Christen Press) 83
USA: 1-Alyssa Naeher; 14-Emily Sonnett (26-Casey Short, 46), 7-Abby Dahlkemper, 4-Becky Sauerbrunn (9-Lindsey Horan, 46), 19-Crystal Dunn (12-Tierna Davidson, 46); 8-Julie Ertz, 6-Morgan Brian, 3-Samantha Mewis (2-Mallory Pugh, 57); 17-Tobin Heath (23-Christen Press, 46), 10-Carli Lloyd (capt.), 22-Jessica McDonald (25-Kristen Hamilton, 76)
Substitutes not used: 21-Adrianna Franch, 20-Allie Long
Not available: 5-Kelley O’Hara, 13-Alex Morgan, 15-Megan Rapinoe, 16-Rose Lavelle
Head coach: Jill Ellis
POR: 1-Inês Pereira; 2-Mónica Mendes, 4-Sílvia Rebelo (capt.), 19-Diana Gomes, 9-Ana Borges (5-Matilde Fidalgo, 46); 11-Tatiana Pinto, 13-Fátima Pinto, 17-Vanessa Marques (10-Jéssica Silva, 61), 6-Andreia Norton (7-Cláudia Neto, 61); 18-Carolina Mendes (14-Dolores Silva, 61), 16-Diana Silva (20-Ana Leite, 82)
Substitutes not used: 22-Rute Costa, 3-Raquel Infante, 15-Ágata Pimenta, 21-Inês Maia, 12-Patrícia Morais, 8-Melissa Gomes, 23-Joana Marchão
Head coach: Francisco Neto
Stats Summary: USA / POR
Shots: 21 / 1
Shots on Goal: 10 / 0
Saves: 0 / 7
Corner Kicks: 6 / 0
Fouls: 8 / 12
Offside: 0 / 2
USA – Carli Lloyd 78th minute
POR – Dolores Silva 81
Referee: Ekaterina Koroleva (USA)
Assistant Referee 1: Kathryn NESBITT (USA)
Assistant Referee 2: Jennifer GARNER (USA)
4th Official: Karen ABT (USA)
U.S. Soccer Woman of the Match: Carli Lloyd