We have a few firsts happening here…this is the first time the Women’s World Cup will be held in France. It is also the first time the Netherlands made it to the final game of the tournament. And most importantly, the US women’s soccer team have made it to the final game five times, they are the only team who has won the cup three times (1991, 1999, 2015). One more factoid for ya, the US is the only country to have played in all eight semifinals of the Women’s World Cup. Let’s go!

And the game is on at 11:00 a.m. EDT I’ll be typing out my reactions as they happen. 

What an amazing experience for those young, aspiring soccer players getting the opportunity to walk on the field with America’s leading women’s soccer players while the US anthem played.

US starting players: Alyssa Naeher (GK); Kelley O’Hara (DEF), Abby Dahlkemper (DEF), Becky Sauerbrunn (DEF), Crystal Dunn (DEF); Samantha Mewis (MID), Julie Ertz (MID), Rose Lavelle (MID); Tobin Heath (FWD), Alex Morgan (FWD), Megan Rapinoe (FWD)

NED starting players: Martens (FWD); Miedema (FWD); Beerensteyn (FWD); Spitse (MID); van de Donk (MID); Groenen (MID); Bloodworth (DEF); van der Gragt (DEF); Dekker (DEF); van Lunteren (DEF); van Veenendaal (GK)

Heading into minute-7 and I have to admit the Netherlands are playing some good defense. Leading to a yellow card against the Netherlands Sherida Spitse at the 10-minute mark. 

For the first time during this tournament, the US has not scored a goal during the first 12 minutes. Like I said, the Netherlands defense is on point. They want this win. Might the US team have gone into this match feeling a wee bit too cocky? I sure hope not.

We’re 21 minutes in and why are people over kicking to my girl Heath!? I’m feeling frustrated. She doesn’t have go-go-gadget legs people!

 

Ertz with a flick to the corner, the save by Veenendaal is pretty spectacular right around the 28-minute mark.
 
Back and forth kicking between the US defenders with 33-minutes on the clock. The Netherlands aren’t buying it, they stay back towards midfield, almost as if they are okay with the US tiring themselves out. 
 
I don’t know guys, it’s 36 minutes in and the US women do indeed look tired. Don’t get me wrong, they are playing just as dynamically as they have been, switching up roles, moving up and down the field, but they do seem shaken by the Netherlands. There is no shortage of goal attempts, but each time the US gets in front, Veenendaal is there for the save (4 saves during this first half). 
41-minute mark the Netherlands get their second yellow card of the game, foul goes to Dahlkemper.
45-minute mark two players O’Hara (US) and Martens (NED) have a collision, appears to be head injuries. They both walk off field and stand with a referee. Two minutes have been added to the clock. They are held off field for a minute and then both run back on field. I’m so confused.
We head into halftime 0-0.
 
Side note: Holy Mackenzie the Mulan trailer looked flipping amazing! It’s on my list for 2020 must-see movies now. And I appreciate the Nike “It’s only crazy until you do it. Just do it” commercial.
 
And we head into the second half of the game.
 
Krieger comes in for O’Hara in the second half, after O’Hara suffered an injury at the end of the first half. Coach Ellis confirmed that O’Hara wasn’t feeling well, we do not know if this is due to the possible head injury or not.
 
Straight away Ertz tries to angle a Rapinoe corner kick into the net, but is unable to make it. No shame in in that since Ertz has been ALL over the field during this game so far.
 
 
47-minutes in Rapinoe sends in another semi-attempt for a goal, it slows down and rolls right to Veenendaal.
 
50-minute mark, foul on the US. 
 
Sauerbrunn goes down, another head injury, she’s bleeding just above her right eye and had to raise her hand to get the game to stop. She will be walking off the field 54-minutes into the game. US continues one-player down now. 
Oh my gosh just two minutes later, Sauerbrunn runs back onto the field with a black bandage wrapped completely around her head. Me thinks there will be no head shots for our girl Becky moving forward. 
VAR watch to check if the shoulder kick to Morgan will be a penalty or not. And it should be. 
 
YES! It is a penalty against the Netherlands Van der Gragt, she gets a yellow card 60-minutes into the game. 
 
LEADING TO THE FIRST GOAL OF THE 2019 WORLD CUP BY MEGAN RAPINOE!!!! LET’S GO! 

How was that ruled a goal kick!? That was clearly a corner from Heath!

70-minutes in and Lavelle has just scored the SECOND GOAL for the US in this World Cup tournament game!

71:42 Alex Morgan runs up the field, looking to score, but Veenendaal scoops up the ball.

72-minutes and NED Dekkers leaves the game, substitute, van de Sanden comes in to play.

78-minutes Rapinoe comes out and Christen Press goes into the game.

This game, man, I’m so tense. Morgan runs down the field, goes for it, and Veenendaal stops it. This goalkeeper is on fire, she has been under pressure a great deal during this match.

USA soccer logoHeath 84-minutes in with her world known fancy footwork. I try to explain this to my kids and I’m flailing around, making sounds, swoosh swoosh swoosh, trying to pretend I’m dodging people. Yeah, I can’t do it, I just look like a muppet. You’re right, muppets typically do not have feet – exactly.

86-minutes Carli Lloyd goes in for Tobin Heath after the fancy footwork. I see you girl, I see you. 

Five minutes added to the clock.

US working the clock, full-speed ahead during these last few moments.

AND IT IS DONE!

THE US WINS THE 2019 WORLD CUP!!!!!!