Women's World Cup Final Tomorrow
An early Sunday for footy fans as the Lionesses meet Spain in the World Cup Final.
At 6:00 AM ET on Sunday August 20 (8:00 PM local time), the Women’s World Cup Final between Spain and England will kick off at Stadium Australia in Sidney. Don’t be scared off by the time - this should be a great match between two teams that have never played in the final, much less won the cup.
Yes, it’s true the U.S. Women’s National Team had their worst run in years. They didn’t even reach the third-place match, which was won today by Sweden, the team that knocked them out of the tournament on penalty kicks.
However, Sunday’s final is an opportunity to see players like Aitana Bonmatí (Spain) and Lauren Hemp (England) in top form. Both have scored 3 goals so far this tournament, as have Alessia Russo (England) and Jenni Hermoso (Spain). All four were on The Guardian’s list of the top 100 female footballers in the world, while Spain’s Alexia Putellas topped this list (England’s Beth Mead was #2, but missed the competition due to an injury).
In the last two World Cups, England made it to the semifinals. This year, after winning their group stage, England beat Nigeria on penalties in the Round of 16, then faced a scare from Colombia when they went down 0-1 due to one of the best goals of the tournament, a beautiful shot by Leicy Santos. The Lionesses came back with an equalizer and a winner, then dispatched Australia in the semis to earn their spot in the final, despite a goal for Australia from Chelsea Superstar Sam Kerr (#3 on the Guardian’s list).
So far this tournament, they have a goal differential of +10, as much a credit to their impenetrable defense as to their offense. They’ve only allowed two goals in six matches over the course of the tournament.
As a boost to England’s chances, they get Lauren James back, who already had three goals in the tournament when she went out in the closing minutes of England’s match against Nigeria due to a red card. England has only lost one of their past 38 matches, despite the loss of Mead. The Lionesses are in top form, and will be tough to beat.
Players to Watch: Lauren James, Alessia Russo, Lauren Hemp
Before this World Cup, Spain hadn’t made it past the Round of 16, losing to the United States in that round in 2019. In Australia and New Zealand, Spain finished second in their group behind Japan.
However, with a undeniable 1-5 win over Switzerland, and an extra time win over the Netherlands, Spain demonstrated their quality. With their exciting 2-1 win over an insurgent Sweden - in a match where all the goals were scored in the final 10 minutes - Spain has become a slight Vegas favorite in the final, despite England dominating previous fixtures between the two nations.
The team has multiple attacking threats with 16 total goals so far in the competition. A total of nine players have scored for Spain in this World Cup, most recently Olga Carmona with her heroic 89th minute winner against Sweden. They’ll need every chance to count against England’s defense.
Players to Watch: Aitana Bonmatí, Alexia Putellas, Jenni Hermoso, Alba Redondo
You can watch the action on Fox networks tomorrow morning. We’ll be live tweeting from @soccersheet, and we hope you’ll join us!
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