U.S. Women’s National Team Defeats China PR 2-1 in Final Match of 2023

The USWNT Finishes the Year With a 14W-4D-0L Record and Just Three Goals Conceded; Midfielder Sam Coffey and Frisco, Texas Native Jaedyn Shaw Score Their First and Second Career Goals, Respectively, to Rally the USA to Victory; 20-Year-Old Midfielder Korbin Albert Makes International Debut

FRISCO, Texas (Dec. 5, 2023) – The U.S. Women’s National Team closed out 2023 on a high note with a 2-1 win against China PR. Second half goals from midfielder Sam Coffey – the first of her career – and Frisco, Texas native Jaedyn Shaw led the team to a comeback win, which was its second victory over the Asian champions in four days.

With the win, the USWNT ended 2023 unbeaten in regulation time and with a 14W-4D-0L record, 15 shutouts and only three goals conceded while outscoring the opposition 36-3. The USA allowed an average of just 0.17 goals per game on the year which set a program record for the fewest goals allowed per game in any calendar year (minimum 10 matches played). The 2023 performance shattered the previous record of 0.40 goals allowed per match which was set in 2016 when the USA allowed 10 goals in 25 matches.

The first half was a close contest as both teams tried to break the other down. Despite dominating in possession and keeping the game mostly in the China’s defensive third, the visitors struck first just before the halftime break with a well-executed set piece. On a free kick from the left side near the corner, forward Shen Mengyu finished from close range off a header pass from Wang Siqian. The goal snapped the USWNT’s impressive seven-game shutout streak and marked the first goal allowed by the USA in 778 minutes. In this match, the USA outshot China 24-4 and allowed just one shot on goal, which unfortunately went in.

The Americans began the second half with fresh legs as forwards Sophia Smith and defender Midge Purce entered the match. The U.S. looked dangerous as Smith created danger on a couple of occasions, but the equalizer eventually came from Coffey as she scored her first international goal with a fantastic curling finish from just inside the 18-yard line following a U.S. corner. Midfielder Emily Sonnett provided the assist after winning a hard-fought duel in the box and feeding Coffey with a short pass.

The USA continued to press in the attack, forcing China PR to bunker down more in their own defensive third as they tried to hold off the danger. Team captain Lindsey Horan came close breaking the deadlock in the 67th minute with a diving header, but the highlight-worthy goal was waived away for offside.

The night was then capped off by two memorable moments. The first came in the 69th minute as midfielder Korbin Albert made her international debut, coming into the match for Horan to become the 258th player all-time to earn a cap for the USWNT, the seventh player to earn a first cap for the USA in 2023 and the sixth to debut under interim head coach Twila Kilgore.

The second came ten minutes later as a USA free kick – earned by Albert, who took a kick in the face at the top of the penalty box – was taken by defender Jenna Nighswonger, who made her first start in just her second cap. The ball bounced off the top of the wall and floated up in the air to Smith, who headed a pass back toward the middle. Shaw, who grew up in Frisco less than a 10-minute walk from Toyota Stadium, ran onto the ball and buried and low drive into the lower left corner to give the USA the lead with her second career goal to the delight of her hometown crowd.

The USA will not be back in match action until next February at the 2024 Concacaf W Gold Cup, a 12-team tournament which will be held at four stadiums in three metropolitan areas – Greater Los Angeles, San Diego and Houston.

GOAL SCORING RUNDOWN:

CHN – Shen Mengyu (Wang Siqian), 45+1 minute: On a set piece from the left side near the end line, Yan Jinjin sent a cross to the far post which Siqian headed back across the goal to find Mengyu for the finish from point-blank range into an open net. USA 0, CHN 1

USA – Sam Coffey (Emily Sonnett), 62nd minute: A poor clearance following a USA corner kick from the right side led to the ball bouncing freely inside the box. Sonnett did well to win the duel with a Chinese defender and quickly laid the ball off for Coffey just inside the top of the box. From there, she placed a clever, curling right-footed shot to the upper 90 for the equalizer from 17 yards out. USA 1, CHN 1

USA – Jaedyn Shaw (Sophia Smith), 79th minute: A U.S. free kick from Nighswonger was blocked by the wall and the bounced high into the air. Smith in the right side of the penalty area, got under the ball and headed a down a pass toward the top of the box which Shaw buried low and into the left corner from about 15 yards out. USA 2, CHN 1

Additional Notes:

  • China PR’s opening goal marked just the third goal the USWNT has allowed all year and the first since July 27 in the Women’s World Cup Group stage vs Netherlands.
  • With her goal to equalize in the second half, Coffey became the 15th different player to score for the USWNT in 2023.
  • Emily Sonnett’s assist to set up Coffey’s goal marked her seventh career assist and econd of 2023.
  • Jaedyn Shaw’s goal marked her second career goal and came in her first start. At 19-years-old, Shaw became the third teenager in USWNT history to score twice in her first four caps. Christie Welsh scored twice in her first four games as an 18-year-old early in 2000 and Cindy Parlow Cone first achieved the feat as a 17-year-old in 1996, netting a brace in her USWNT debut.
  • Smith’s assist to Shaw marked her third of the year and seventh of her career.

-U.S. WOMEN’S NATIONAL TEAM MATCH REPORT-

Match: United States Women’s National Team vs. China PR 
Date: December 5, 2023 
Competition: International Friendly 
Venue: Toyota Stadium; Frisco, Texas  
Attendance: 11,024 
Kickoff: 8:07 p.m. ET (7:07 local) 
Weather: 56 degrees; clear  

Scoring Summary:   1          2          F 
USA                             0          2          2
CHN                             0          1          1 

CHN – Shen Mengyu (Wang Siqian)                                                   45+1
USA – Sam Coffey (Emily Sonnett)                                                   62
USA – Jaedyn Shaw (Sophie Smith)                                                  79 

Lineups: 
USA: 18-Aubrey Kingsbury; 23-Emily Fox (9-Midge Purce, 46)*, 12-Tierna Davidson, 15-Naomi Girma, 13-Jenna Nighswonger; 14-Emily Sonnett, 4-Sam Coffey (25-Olivia Moultrie, 69), 10-Lindsey Horan (Capt.) (27-Korbin Albert, 69); 26-Jaedyn Shaw (17-Alyssa Thompson, 86), 7-Ashley Hatch (11-Sophia Smith, 46), 6-Lynn Williams (8-Trinity Rodman, 58) 
Substitutes not used: 1-Casey Murphy, 2-Abby Dahlkemper, 5-Alana Cook, 16-Rose Lavelle, 20-Casey Krueger, 22-Savannah DeMelo 
Head coach: Twila Kilgore 
*Concussion substitution 

CHN: 12-Xu Huan; 2-Li Mengwen, 24-Jin Kun (26-Li Tingyingge, 68), 25-Wang Siqian, 27-Huo Yuexin (11-Wang Shanshan, 87); 17-Yan Jinjin (7-Wang Yanwen, 46), 8-Yao Wei, 9-Shen Mengyu, 19-Zhang Linyan (20-Wu Rigumula, 81); 23-Tang Jiali, 18-Shen Menglu 
Substitutes not used: 22-Pan Hongyan, 32-Gao Jingyao, 5-Liu Yanqiu, 28-Wang Aifang 
Head coach: Wang Jun 

Stats Summary: USA / CHN 
Shots: 24 / 4
Shots on Goal: 11 / 1
Saves: 0 / 9
Corner Kicks: 6 / 2
Fouls: 10 / 8
Offside: 2 / 1  

Misconduct Summary: 
CHN – Huo Yuexin (Caution)                                       77th minute
CHN – Wurigumula (Caution)                                     87 

Officials:  
Referee: Lizzet Garcia (MEX)
Assistant Referee 1: Sandra Ramirez (MEX)
Assistant Referee 2: Jessica Morales (MEX)
4th Official: Danielle Chesky (USA)

Bud Light Woman of the Match: Sam Coffey

Go Deeper