ORLANDO, Fla. (Feb. 21, 2021) -- The U.S. Women’s National Team put together an entertaining performance during a 2-0 victory against Brazil in second of its three matches at the 2021 SheBelieves Cup, presented by Visa. Goals early and late from Christen Press and Megan Rapinoe, respectively - both teed up by Lindsey Horan – earned the USA the full three points as well as first place in the tournament standings with one match day left to play.
The match marked the first time the USA has faced a Brazil team coached by former USWNT head coach Pia Sundhage, who led the USA to gold medals at the 2008 and 2012 Olympic Games and to the 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup Final.
The victory puts the USA (2-0-0, 6 points) in sole possession of the top spot in the SheBelieves Cup standings and in pole position to take home the tournament title. A win or draw against Argentina on Wednesday, Feb. 24 would see the USA clinch tournament title. The match will kick off at 7 p.m. ET on FS1 and TUDN from Exploria Stadium in Orlando, Fla.
After both Brazil and the USA won their opening matches of the tournament on Thursday, the USWNT’s relentless early pressure was rewarded in the 11th minute when Lindsey Horan sent a pass to Press down the left wing and after a nifty bit of dribbling into the penalty area, she ripped a shot from the top corner of the box for the game’s opening goal and her 10th in her last 13 games. It was also her 59th career goal for the United States. She sits in 10th all-time for the USA but her next goal will tie her for ninth place with Shannon MacMillan.
In a free-flowing game that featured tremendous transition play from both teams, the U.S. continued to threaten down the stretch and the aftermath of a free kick sparked an insurance goal for the WNT, as Horan served a ball for Rapinoe to volley home in the 88th minute. It was Rapinoe’s 54th career international goal.
Horan logged her 30th and 31st career assists and became the 18th player in USWNT history to record 30 or more.
Standings: 2021 SheBelieves Cup, presented by Visa
The USA put pressure on Brazil from the opening whistle and created a number of early scoring opportunities. Midfielder Rose Lavelle was able to pick apart the Brazil defense with her dribbling, and on several occasions, had just one player to beat to set up prime scoring chances, only to see the ball poked away. Press and Lynn Williams threatened on the wings and put in some tremendous defensive work while Alex Morgan, making her first start since the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup Final, also sprung a number of attacking chances.
Brazil only had two shots on goal during the match but looked dangerous the entire game and the South American’s best chance of the first half off a break from Debinha and Ludmila was thwarted on a brilliant sliding blocked shot from Crystal Dunn inside the penalty area.
The two attackers would create a number of chances for Brazil on the break down the stretch, but the USWNT defense held strong with a number of clutch defensive plays deep in its own territory to hold the Canarinhas scoreless. The USA hasn’t allowed a goal in its last five matches and goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher has recorded 10 consecutive shutouts, the longest individual streak in WNT history.
Once again, U.S. head coach Vlatko Andonovski’s substitutes made an impact off the bench. Rapinoe’s late goal was not only the clincher but marked the fifth-straight game that a second-half substitute has scored.
GOAL SCORING SUMMARY
USA – Christen Press (Lindsey Horan), 11th minute: After a strong tackle to win the ball near midfield, Julie Ertz played the ball to Lindsey Horan on the run down the left sideline. The midfielder found a streaking Christen Press, who took a touch, cut inside, and spun a shot from the top left corner of the penalty box just inside the right post for the game’s opening goal. USA 1, BRA 0
USA – Megan Rapinoe (Lindsey Horan), 88th minute: Near the right sideline, Emily Sonnett found Linsdey Horan on the run down the wing. She hit a booming ball cross past her defender and into the box. Megan Rapinoe, who was heavily marked, snuck in front of her defender just inside the penalty spot and volleyed off the goalkeeper’s hands into the net at the right post. USA 2, BRA 0
The USA improves to 30-3-5 all-time vs. Brazil.
The USA extended its unbeaten streak to 36 games. The U.S. is now unbeaten in its last 52 home matches: 47 wins and five draws. The run has seen the USA outscore its opponents 182-27, including a margin of 52-3 during its last 14 matches on home soil.
U.S. head coach Vlatko Andonovski is 15-0-0 in his first 15 games, extending a record for best start for a head coach in USWNT history. Current Brazil head coach Pia Sundhage holds the second-best start for any head coach in USWNT history with 10 straight victories.
Andonovski made four changes to the starting line-up from the SheBelieves Cup opener vs. Canada with Rose Lavelle, Alex Morgan, Christen Press and Emily Sonnett replacing Carli Lloyd, Catarina Macario, Margaret Purce and Megan Rapinoe.
Goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher recorded her 40th career shutout and 10th consecutive clean sheet, extending her own USWNT record.
Rose Lavelle and Emily Sonnett picked up their 50th caps with the USA, the 61st and 62nd players in USWNT history to reach 50 appearances.
Twenty-year-old forward Sophia Smith earned her second cap and made her first appearance of the year, coming on for Lynn Williams in the 65th minute.
Press has been directly involved in 27 goals in her last 28 appearances for the USA, scoring 12 goals and assisting 15 more. She also served in the free kick that led to Rose Lavelle’s game-winner vs. Canada on Feb. 18.
Midfielder Lindsey Horan has had a hand in eight of the USWNT’s 13 goals in 2021. She played a part in two goals and drew a penalty vs. Colombia on Jan. 18, scored and played a part in another goal vs. Colombia on Jan. 22, picked up an assist vs. Canada on Feb. 18 and two vs. Brazil this afternoon.
Horan has also scored or assisted on four of the last five goals the USWNT has scored. She scored the fifth goal in the USA’s 6-0 win over Colombia on Jan. 22. She assisted on Rose Lavelle’s game-winner vs. Canada on Feb. 18 and assisted on both goals vs. Brazil today.
- 2021 SheBelieves Cup, Presented By Visa, Match Report -
Match: U.S. Women’s National Team vs. Brazil
Date: Feb. 21, 2021
Competition: 2021 SheBelieves Cup
Venue: Exploria Stadium; Orlando, Florida
Attendance: 4,000 (Capacity for Limited Attendance)
Kickoff: 3:05 p.m. ET
Weather: 72 degrees, mostly cloudy
Scoring Summary: 1 2 F
USA 1 1 2
BRA 0 0 0
USA – Christen Press (Lindsey Horan) 11th minute
USA – Megan Rapinoe (Lindsey Horan) 88
USA: 1-Alyssa Naeher; 14-Emily Sonnett, 4-Becky Sauerbrunn (Capt.), 7-Abby Dahlkemper, 19-Crystal Dunn, 8-Julie Ertz, 9-Lindsey Horan, 6-Lynn Williams (17-Sophia Smith, 65), 16-Rose Lavelle (22-Kristie Mewis, 83), 23-Christen Press (15-Megan Rapinoe, 71), 13-Alex Morgan (10-Carli Lloyd, 71)
Subs not used: 2-Casey Krueger, 3-Jaelin Howell, 5-Kelley O’Hara, 11-Catarina Macario, 12-Tierna Davidson, 18-Jane Campbell, 20-Margaret Purce, 21-Casey Murphy
Head coach: Vlatko Andonovski
BRA: 1-Bárbara; 6-Tamires, 4-Rafaelle, 3-Bruna, 2-Kathellen (23-Jucinara, 72), 7-Andressa (11-Cristiane, 72), 17-Andressinha, 10-Marta (Capt.), 16-Beatriz (13-Júlia, 56), 19-Ludmila (20-Gio, 85), 9-Debinha
Subs not used: 5-Geyse, 8-Ivana, 12-Aline, 14-Adriana, 15-Chú, 18-Camila, 21-Tainara, 22-Leticia
Head coach: Pia Sundhage
Stats Summary: USA / BRA
Shots: 17 / 10
Shots on Goal: 5 / 2
Saves: 2 / 3
Corner Kicks: 2 / 1
Fouls: 11 / 9
Offside: 2 / 2
BRA – Bruna (Caution) 33rd minute
USA – Lindsey Horan (Caution) 52
BRA – Tamires (Caution) 58
BRA – Ludmila (Caution) 80
Referee: Melissa Borjas (HON)
Assistant Referee 1: Shirley Perello (HON)
Assistant Referee 2: Chantal Boudreau (CAN)
4th Official: Marianela Araya Cruz (CRC)
U.S. Soccer Insiders Woman of the Match: Christen Press