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USA Ties Japan 2-2 in Teams' First 2019 SheBelieves Cup Match

CHESTER, Pa. (Feb. 27, 2019) – The U.S. Women’s National Team opened the 2019 SheBelieves Cup with a 2-2 tie against Japan in front of 14,555 fans at Talen Energy Stadium.

On a cold night, both teams began the game with quality possession while playing at pace, but the USA was able to create more dangerous opportunities in the attacking third, a theme that held up for the entire 90 minutes.

Japan nearly began the scoring in the 11th minute when Kumi Yokoyama hit the crossbar from the right side of the penalty area. However, it was the USA that broke through in the 23rd minute thanks to a great run from Tobin Heath down the right side all the way to the end line. With the Japanese goalkeeper at the near post, Heath played a cross on the ground to Megan Rapinoe and she smoothly finished into the open net.

The USA made a planned substitution at halftime with Emily Sonnett coming on for Kelley O’Hara and continued pressing for another goal, but Japan equalized in the 67th minute on a nice finish from Emi Nakajima. The goal came on Japan’s first shot on goal of the game.

Christen Press, who came into the game in the 75th minute, made an immediate impact and provided the crucial assist for Alex Morgan’s 99th career goal, which she netted in the 76th minute, to put the USA up 2-1.

As time ticked down, it looked as though the USA would see out the game comfortably, but after a delay in the match due to an injury to the assistant referee, five minutes of time were added and got a final chance to tie the match.

A turnover led to Yui Hasegawa getting loose in the left side of the box she rolled the ball across the goal to the back post for Yuka Momiki who roofed the equalizer over a diving Alyssa Naher in the 91st minute, pulling the game even 2-2. The USA has a few late before the final whistle but could not create another goal.

In the first game of the day, England overcame a first half penalty kick from Andressa to defeat Brazil by a 2-1 score to open its 2019 SheBelieves Cup campaign with three points. 

Brazil got on the board first when six-time FIFA Women’s World Player of the Year Marta raced into the penalty area in the 15th minute and won the penalty kick that was converted by Andressa, but England equalized in the 49th minute after Fran Kirby assisted Ellen White’s equalizer just four minutes into the second half. Kirby again provided the assist in the 75th minute on Beth Mead’s stunning shot across the face of the goal into the left side netting for the game-winner.

2019 SheBelieves Cup Standings

Team

GP

W

L

T

GF

GA

GD

Pts.

England

1

1

0

0

2

1

1

3

Japan

1

0

0

1

2

2

0

1

United States

1

0

0

1

2

2

0

1

Brazil

1

0

1

0

1

2

0

0

Up Next: The WNT will travel south to Nashville, Tenn., to face England on March 2 (4:30 p.m. ET; FOX) at Nissan Stadium, while Japan will take on Brazil in the earlier game of the day (2 p.m. ET; ussoccer.com). The U.S. will finish its 2019 SheBelieves schedule vs. Brazil on March 5 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Fla. (8 p.m. ET; FS1).

Social: Follow the #USWNT on Facebook; Twitter and Instagram.

Goal Scoring Rundown:
USA – Megan Rapinoe (Tobin Heath), 23rd minute:
Mallory Pugh found Tobin Heath on the right flank and Heath took off running into the penalty area, dribbling all the way to the end line before placing a perfect cross on the ground to the top of the six-yard box where Rapinoe finished with a single right-footed touch to score the USA’s first goal of the game. USA 1, JPN 0. WATCH GOAL.

JPN – Emi Nakajima, 67th minute: Japan played a chipped ball into the box that bounced off a U.S. defender and then a Japan attacker before rolling to Tierna Davidson who attempted to clear the ball, but it went right to Nakajima who took a touch and then bent the ball into the left side of the net from 13 yards out giving Naeher no chance. USA 1, JPN 1. WATCH GOAL.

USA – Alex Morgan (Christen Press), 76th minute: Second half sub Christen Press made an immediate impact with her speed. After receiving the ball on the right wing and evading her defender, she crossed it into the middle of the six-yard box where Morgan met the ball with her chest, wrong-footed the Japanese goalkeeper, and it flew into the right side of the net for her 99th international goal. USA 2, JPN 1. WATCH GOAL.

JPN – Yuka Momiki (Yui Hasegawa), 91st minute: As the teams battled for possession near midfield, Japan came up with the ball and advanced upfield through a neat combination of passes that eventually sprung Hasegawa into the left side of the penalty area. As she neared the goal, she squared the ball across the face of net for the crashing Momiki to lift the equalizer over a sprawling Alyssa Naeher. USA 2, JPN 2. WATCH GOAL. FINAL.

Additional Notes:

  • Alex Morgan scored her first of 2019 to up her career total to 99 international goals in 156 caps. At age 29, she sits in sole possession of seventh place on the USA's all-time goal list. Morgan has scored 26 goals over her last 29 WNT matches, a span that runs from the end of 2017. The 26 goals have included six braces and one hat trick.
  • Megan Rapinoe scored her first goal of 2019 tonight, the 43rd of her career. This is the third consecutive year that Rapinoe scores vs. Japan. She also tallied during their matchups at the 2017 and 2018 Tournament of Nations.
  • Tobin Heath earned her first assist of the year and the 36th of her career on Rapinoe’s goal tonight. In 2018, Heath recorded six assists in 10 appearances for the USA.
  • Christen Press earned her first assist of 2019 tonight one minute after coming in as a second half substitute.
  • Since the 2017 SheBelieves Cup, the USA has failed to score in just one game (vs. Australia at the 2017 ToN). That’s a 35-game span.

– 2019 SheBelieves Cup Match Report –

Match: U.S. Women’s National Team vs. Japan
Date: February 27, 2019
Competition: SheBelieves Cup
Venue: Talen Energy Stadium; Chester, Pa.
Kickoff: 7 p.m. ET
Attendance: 14,555
Weather:  35 degrees; cloudy, cold

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

USA – Megan Rapinoe (Tobin Heath)          23rd minute
JPN – Emi Nakajima                                        67
USA – Alex Morgan (Christen Press)            76
JPN – Yuka Momiki (Yui Hasegawa)            90+1

Lineups:
USA:  1-Alyssa Naeher; 5-Kelley O’Hara (2-Emily Sonnet, 46), 7-Abby Dahlkemper, 12-Tierna Davidson, 19-Crystal Dunn; 8-Julie Ertz, 11-Mallory Pugh (23-Christen Press, 75), 16-Rose Lavelle; 17-Tobin Heath, 13-Alex Morgan (capt.) (10-Carli Lloyd, 85), 15-Megan Rapinoe
Substitutes: 21-Adrianna Franch, 24-Ashlyn Harris, 3-Samantha Mewis, 4-Becky Sauerbrunn, 6-Andi Sullivan, 14-Casey Short, 20-Jessica McDonald, 22-Emily Fox, 25-McCall Zerboni
Head coach: Jill Ellis

JPN: 21-Erina Yamane; 6-Saori Ariyoshi (12-Risako Oga, 59), 3-Aya Sameshima, 4-Saki Kumagai (capt.), 22-Risa Shimizu; 9-Hina Sugita, 16-Arisa Matsubara, 14-Yui Hasegawa, 7-Emi Nakajima (19-Jun Endo, 82); 20-Kumi Yokoyama (15-Yuka Momiki, 80), 11-Rikako Kobayashi (13-Mayu Ikejiri, 59)
Substitutes: 1-Rei Takenaka, 18-Ayaka Saitoh, 2-Rumi Utsugi, 5-Nana Ichise, 8-Moeno Sakaguchi, 23-Moeka Minami, 24-Asato Miyagawa
Head coach: Asako Takakura

Stats Summary: USA / JPN
Shots: 13 / 5
Shots on Goal: 6 / 2
Saves: 0 / 4
Corner Kicks: 8 / 4
Fouls: 10 / 6
Offside: 3 / 2

Misconduct Summary:
JPN – Saki Kumagai (caution)                                                      38th minute

Officials:
Referee: Melissa Borjas (HON)                                                                                                             
Assistant Referee 1: Shirely Perello (HON)                                                                                                                       
Assistant Referee 2: Lidia Ayala (SLV)                                                                                                                                 
4th Official: Tatiana Guzman (NCA)

Budweiser Woman of the Match: Tobin Heath

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WNT Feb 27, 2019

– 2019 SheBelieves Cup Match Report –

Match: U.S. Women’s National Team vs. Japan
Date: February 27, 2019
Competition: SheBelieves Cup
Venue: Talen Energy Stadium; Chester, Pa.
Kickoff: 7 p.m. ET
Attendance: 14,555
Weather:  35 degrees; cloudy, cold

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

USA – Megan Rapinoe (Tobin Heath)          23rd minute
JPN – Emi Nakajima                                        67
USA – Alex Morgan (Christen Press)            76
JPN – Yuka Momiki (Yui Hasegawa)            90+1

Lineups:
USA:  1-Alyssa Naeher; 5-Kelley O’Hara (2-Emily Sonnet, 46), 7-Abby Dahlkemper, 12-Tierna Davidson, 19-Crystal Dunn; 8-Julie Ertz, 11-Mallory Pugh (23-Christen Press, 75), 16-Rose Lavelle; 17-Tobin Heath, 13-Alex Morgan (capt.) (10-Carli Lloyd, 85), 15-Megan Rapinoe
Substitutes: 21-Adrianna Franch, 24-Ashlyn Harris, 3-Samantha Mewis, 4-Becky Sauerbrunn, 6-Andi Sullivan, 14-Casey Short, 20-Jessica McDonald, 22-Emily Fox, 25-McCall Zerboni
Head coach: Jill Ellis

JPN: 21-Erina Yamane; 6-Saori Ariyoshi (12-Risako Oga, 59), 3-Aya Sameshima, 4-Saki Kumagai (capt.), 22-Risa Shimizu; 9-Hina Sugita, 16-Arisa Matsubara, 14-Yui Hasegawa, 7-Emi Nakajima (19-Jun Endo, 82); 20-Kumi Yokoyama (15-Yuka Momiki, 80), 11-Rikako Kobayashi (13-Mayu Ikejiri, 59)
Substitutes: 1-Rei Takenaka, 18-Ayaka Saitoh, 2-Rumi Utsugi, 5-Nana Ichise, 8-Moeno Sakaguchi, 23-Moeka Minami, 24-Asato Miyagawa
Head coach: Asako Takakura

Stats Summary: USA / JPN
Shots: 13 / 5
Shots on Goal: 6 / 2
Saves: 0 / 4
Corner Kicks: 8 / 4
Fouls: 10 / 6
Offside: 3 / 2

Misconduct Summary:
JPN – Saki Kumagai (caution)                                                      38th minute

Officials: 
Referee: Melissa Borjas (HON)                                                                                                              
Assistant Referee 1: Shirely Perello (HON)                                                                                                                        
Assistant Referee 2: Lidia Ayala (SLV)                                                                                                                                 
4th Official: Tatiana Guzman (NCA)

Budweiser Woman of the Match: Tobin Heath

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Alex Morgan is Scoring Goals and That’s Good for Everyone (Except Those Playing Against Her)

Alex Morgan is in the business of scoring goals. And business is booming.

Most recently, Morgan scored goal No. 100  to become the seventh player in WNT history to join the exclusive century mark club. The club also features Abby Wambach, Mia Hamm, Kristine Lilly, Michelle Akers, Tiffeny Milbrett and Carli Lloyd. 

In her last 33 games playing for the U.S. Women’s National Team, Morgan has scored 28 times. They’ve come in a multitude of ways – from the penalty spot, headers, blistering drives and breakaways. She’s scored game-winners and braces, against Japan on July 26 at the 2018 Tournament of Nations, she bagged a hat trick. It was the fourth of her career.

Morgan then added not one, or two, but three braces during the 2018 Concacaf Women's Championship, one in each group game she played in, and another against Jamaica in the crucial semifinal win that booked the U.S. a spot in France 2019. A single goal vs. Canada in the title game on Oct. 17 gave her 7 total - the most of any player - and made her the Golden Boot winner as the tournament's leading scorer.

In 2019 so far she has scored against Japan on Feb. 27, against Australia on April 4 - her 100th - with the latter one being a spectacular one; and vs. Belgium on April 7 to up her total to 101.

Morgan has been scoring for the USA since 2010, and since scoring goals is perhaps the most difficult part of the game, there have been periods of great form and a few dry spells. But the past years has been impressive even by the high standards we’ve come to expect from the 29-year-old.

It’s always been clear that when Morgan is in the zone, opposing defenses are in for a long night.

This 33-game span for Morgan began in the latter half of 2017 after she returned from her six-month stint at Olympique Lyonnais, lasted through the final seven games of 2017, then continued into 2018 and now 2019.

She closed 2017 with seven goals in seven games (which made her the team’s top scorer for the year) and finished 2018 with a team-leading 18 goals in the 19 games in which she played. The 18 goals in the a calendar year are the second most of her career. The only year in which she scored more was in 2012 - an Olympic year - when she netted 28.

Morgan’s first WNT goal came on Oct. 2, 2010 against China PR. She played in eight games that year and scored four goals. She followed that up with six goals in 2011 and had a breakthrough performance at the 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Germany.

In 2012, Morgan had one of the best scoring years in U.S. history, tallying a remarkable 28 goals with 21 assists to lead the team in both categories. Her goal total was the third-best in U.S. history behind only Michelle Akers (39 in 1991) and Wambach (31 in 2004) and her assist total was tied for second-best in U.S. history behind only Hamm (22 in 2004) and tied with Carin Gabarra (21 in 1991). She also helped the USA to the gold medal at the London Olympics, scoring the epic 123rdminute game-winner in the semifinal final that is still the latest goal in FIFA history, and earned personal recognition when she finished third for the FIFA Player of the Year award and was named the U.S. Soccer Female Player of the Year for the first time.

The next two years for Morgan were unfortunately plagued by injuries. In 2013, she missed a few games but still played 811 minutes in 12 games and scored six goals with four assists. She spent much of 2014 finishing her recovery but returned to play in seven matches, starting four, while scoring five goals with four assists before she suffered an ankle injury in the second match of the 2014 CONCACAF Women’s Championship that kept her out for the rest of the year.

She rounded into shape just in time to participate in her second World Cup at the senior level and she was a key member of the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup champions. She came off the bench in the first two games as she regained her fitness, but then got the start in the final group game against Nigeria and started all four knock-out round games. She played in 22 of the USA’s 26 games that year and scored seven goals. She got back to her old self in 2016 when she found the net 17 times, including what was probably the best goal of the year on March 9 against Germany in the SheBelieves Cup.

What's impressive about it all, it not just her scoring rate, but the fact that the goals are coming against elite talent at a time when the level of play worldwide is increasingly competitive. And while the U.S. Women know that nothing is given and everything is earned, with Morgan in her current form, fans are surely looking forward to an entertaining few months ahead.

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WNT Apr 10, 2019

USA Ties Japan 2-2 in Teams' First 2019 SheBelieves Cup Match

CHESTER, Pa. (Feb. 27, 2019) – The U.S. Women’s National Team opened the 2019 SheBelieves Cup with a 2-2 tie against Japan in front of 14,555 fans at Talen Energy Stadium. On a cold night, both teams began the game with quality possession while playing at pace, but the USA was able to create more dangerous opportunities in the attacking third, a theme that held up for the entire 90 min Read more
WNT Feb 27, 2019

England Defeats Brazil 2-1 in 2019 SheBelieves Cup Opener

CHESTER, Pa. (Feb. 27, 2019) – The England Women’s National Team defeated Brazil by a score of 2-1 in the opening game of the 2019 SheBelieves Cup on a chilly Wednesday afternoon at Talen Energy Stadium.   Brazil got on the board first when six-time FIFA Women’s World Player of the Year Marta raced into the penalty area in the 15th minute and won a penalty kick as Read more
WNT Feb 27, 2019

Lineup Notes: USA Kicks Off Pre-World Cup Domestic Schedule vs. Japan at 2019 SheBelieves Cup

USA vs. Japan  Date: Feb. 27, 2019 Venue: Talen Energy Stadium Broadcast: FS1 Kickoff: 7 p.m. ET Starting XI vs. Japan: 1-Alyssa Naeher; 5-Kelley O’Hara, 7-Abby Dahlkemper, 12-Tierna Davidson, 19-Crystal Dunn; 8-Julie Ertz, 11-Mallory Pugh, 16-Rose Lavelle; 17-Tobin Heath, 13-Alex Morgan (capt.), 15-Megan Rapinoe Subs: 2-Emily Sonnett , 3- Samantha Mewis, 4-Becky Sauerbrunn, 6-And Read more
WNT Feb 27, 2019

2019 SheBelieves Cup: Five Things to Know About Japan

The USA and Japan met in three consecutive world finals in the first half of this decade -- the 2011 Women’s World Cup, the 2012 Olympics and the 2015 Women’s World Cup -- forever linking these two countries together in soccer history. As the teams prepare to meet again at the 2019 SheBelieves Cup, here are five things to know about Nadeshiko Japan. Japan Women’s National Team Read more
WNT Feb 26, 2019
US Soccer

New Rules to Be Piloted at 2019 SheBelieves Cup

CHICAGO (Feb. 27, 2019)— In preparation for the 2019 SheBelieves Cup and the 2019 Women’s World Cup in France, U.S. Soccer has received approval from the International Football Association Board (IFAB) to pilot three changes to the Laws of the Game during the upcoming tournament.

The 133rd Annual General Meeting (AGM) of The IFAB will be held in Aberdeen, Scotland on March 2, 2019. The changes outlined below will be on exhibition at the 2019 SheBelieves Cup and will be amongst other possible changes up for ratification on March 2.

  • A player being substituted must leave the field of play at the nearest point on the boundary line.
  • Yellow and red cards for misconduct can be issued to team officials.
  • On a goal kick and a free kick for the defending team in their own penalty area, the ball is in play as soon as the kick is taken so a player – or opponent as long as they started outside the penalty or were not given the proper time to exit the penalty – can play the ball before it leaves the penalty area.

While additional changes are being proposed for ratification, U.S. Soccer requested and received approval for the experiments above during the 2019 SheBelieves Cup. All participating teams, coaching staffs and referees were informed and briefed in advance with regard to the pilot changes.


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Feb 27, 2019

Mckenna Woodhead Voted 2019 SheBelieves Hero Contest Winner

CHICAGO (Feb. 26, 2019) – Mckenna Woodhead has been voted the winner of the 2019 SheBelieves Hero contest ahead of the start of the SheBelieves Cup. She will receive complimentary travel and tickets to the U.S. Women’s National Team match vs. England at Nissan Stadium in Nashville, Tenn. On March 2 (4:30 p.m. ET; FOX).

A panel of four former U.S. Women’s National Team players selected the contest finalists from a field of eligible submissions. The finalists’ stories were shared via social media for the general public to vote on who best embodied the SheBelieves spirit, which is defined as a leader in their community, a confident and passionate individual who empowers others around her and actively works to make a difference.

Public votes counted for 50 percent of the total with the panelists’ votes accounting for the other 50 percent. The other SheBelieves Hero finalists were Maddie Lauro, Alyssa Corb and Molly Clark.

Conceived and developed by U.S. Soccer and the U.S. Women’s National Team players, SheBelieves is a movement to inspire young girls and women and encourage them to accomplish their goals and dreams, athletic or otherwise. The campaign was originally launched in the run-up to the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup but has since evolved and grown into a special bond between the team and its fans, taking its powerful message of empowerment into communities across the nation. Through dedication, teamwork, perseverance and success, U.S. WNT players inspire new generations of young girls and women to be better and strive for better; they inspire them to believe.


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WNT Feb 26, 2019
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