Team USA becomes the first side to win back-to-back titles at the tournament with a commanding victory over Argentina
The U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team won its fourth SheBelieves Cup Wednesday (24 February) after a commanding victory over Argentina, 6-0.
Their victory makes them the first team to win back-to-back titles, and they are the first team in tournament history to win with three consecutive shutouts.
The U.S. wasted no time, starting off aggressively with several shots on goal. Then, at the 16-minute mark, Olympic gold medallist Megan Rapinoe found the back of the net after a pass from World Cup winning star Rose Lavelle.
The goal, Rapinoe’s sixth all-time at SheBelieves, made her the top scorer in tournament history. She added to that record less than 10 minutes later, assisted this time by Carli Lloyd, a double Olympic champion, in the 26th minute.
"We wanted to come out fast as always. It's always dangerous to leave teams hanging around so we definitely didn't do that today," said Rapinoe afterward in an interview with American broadcast FS1. "Just tried to find the space, be aggressive."
From there, the flood gates were open as Lloyd scored a goal of her own, assisted by Kristie Mewis, in the 35th minute. As the half wrapped up, Mewis gave Team USA its fourth goal. Casey Short got the assist.
London 2012 Olympic gold medallist Alex Morgan, who is making her return to the national team after giving birth last year, gave the American women their fifth goal in the 84th minute. It moves her clear in fifth spot on the all-time scorers list for USWNT. Christen Press scored shortly after, to round off the scoring in the 87th minute. It was the 60th international goal for Press.
The perfect record of three wins from three matches at the event in Orlando, Florida, ensures that the U.S. will go into the Tokyo 2020 Olympic football tournament in 2021 as one of the favourites for gold. They remain top of the women's world rankings.
Earlier in the day, Brazil notched a 2-0 win over Canada. It was the second victory of the tournament for the Brazilians, giving them 6 points overall and second place.
Both of Brazil’s goals came in the first half with Débora Cristiane de Oliveira striking first at the 15’ mark and Julia Bianchi adding a second score 39 minutes into play.
Canada finished with one win – against Argentina – for third place overall.
“We had a great chance to assess the group and some players really stepped up across the three matches,” said Canadian head coach Bev Priestman. “It’s now about getting that chemistry right and putting the ball in the back of the net. It will be important in April to have the whole squad available so that we can work on that chemistry leading into the Olympic Games.”