USA-Netherlands Women's Olympics Player Ratings

July 30 in Yokohama, Japan
USA 2 Netherlands 2. (USA wins 4-2 on penaltiesGoals: S.Mewis 28, Williams 31; Miedema 18, 54.
Att.: behind closed doors.
* * * * * * * * * *

After getting only 16 minutes of playing time in the previous three games, Lynn Williams provided the USA's best attacking performance of these Olympics. She set up the first U.S. goal and scored the second in a 2-2 tie with the Dutch. Alyssa Naeher saved two of the tiebreaker spot kicks in the shootout win that sends the USA into a semifinal against Canada.

USA Player Ratings
(1=low; 5=middle; 10=high.)


Alyssa Naeher  dived and got her hand on the long-range shot by Vivianne Miedema yet failed to block it on the second goal. But she guessed correctly and collected Lieke Martens' weakly hit penalty kick in the 81st minute to salvage the USA's medal hopes. She alertly left her line to steal the ball off Lineth Beerensteyn's feet in the 87th minute. Naeher saved the first and fourth Dutch tiebreaker spot kicks. Her quick distribution, a throw to Crystal Dunn, sparked the buildup on the first U.S. goal.

Player (Club) caps/goals (age)

Alyssa Naeher (Chicago Red Stars) 77/0 (33)


Crystal Dunn was offensively inconsistent, yet the left back's strong defensive performance (aside from an unlucky deflection of a cross ahead of the first Dutch goal) included a tackle in overtime on Beerensteyn near the goal area. Right back Kelley O’Hara mistimed her chance to interfere with Miedema on the first goal. O'Hara caused the penalty with a clumsy collision with Beerensteyn, one of her four fouls. She lobbed a cross to the keeper in first-half stoppage time despite far better options. Abby Dahlkemper's return to the lineup helped the attack with her mid- and long-distance passes. Miedema, perhaps the world's best forward, got away from Dahlkemper on the second goal and Dahlkemper gave her too much space on the first. Ultimately, Dahlkemper and central partner Becky Sauerbrunn stifled the Dutch as they surged late in the game and in overtime.

Player (Club) caps/goals (age)

Kelley O’Hara (Washington Spirit) 143/2 (32)

Abby Dahlkemper (Man. City, ENG) 74/0 (28)

Becky Sauerbrunn (Portland Thorns) 191/0 (36)

Crystal Dunn (Portland Thorns) 120/24 (29)


Far from a polished performance, Lindsey Horan didn't always make good use of the ball after winning it or receiving passes, like after the long Dahlkemper delivery in the 44th minute that Horan settled, before beating Lynn Wilms and passing the ball weakly to the Dutch keeper. Horan did send a pinpoint 30-yard pass, after shedding her marker, to provide Carli Lloyd a golden opportunity in the 53rd minute. Julie Ertz missed a chance to block Miedema's shot on the second goal. But the defensive work that Ertz and Horan  did prevented the Dutch midfield from providing more service to their lethal-looking frontline. And Ertz beat Jackie Groenen in the center circle, dribbled into the Dutch half to feed Sam Mewis, who relayed the ball to Lynn Williams and scored a wonderful diving header from Williams' return pass.

Player (Club) caps/goals (age)

Lindsey Horan (Portland Thorns) 102/23 (27)

Julie Ertz (Chicago Red Stars) 113/20 (29)

Sam Mewis (North Carolina Courage) 81/24 (28)


If the USA didn't advance, Coach Vlatko Andonovski would be remembered for his inexplicable substitution of Lynn Williams, the USA's best player during her first Olympic start. The low cross she delivered on the Mewis goal, after neatly beating Dominique Janssen, is of the kind the USA has far too few of. Williams looked up and aimed the pass rather the usual hopeful hoofed delivery we see from U.S. flank players. Three minutes later, Williams won a header off the clearance of a under-hit Tobin Heath corner kick. When the ball returned to Williams, she nailed an 11-yard half-volley into the corner of the net past keeper Sari van Veenendaal and defender Stefanie van der Gragt. In her fourth appearance and second start of the Olympics, center forward Carli Lloyd never came close to scoring her first goal of the tournament. She shot poorly twice and blew the big chance presented by Horan's pass with an awful first touch in the 53rd minute. The Dutch scored their equalizer seconds later. Heath, unable to beat defenders one-on-one, turned a promising free kick into a goal kick in the 25th minute after under-hitting a corner kick a minute earlier.

Player (Club) caps/goals (age)

Lynn Williams (North Carolina Courage) 39/12 (28)

Carli Lloyd (Gotham FC) 310/126 (39)

Tobin Heath (Unattached) 175/35 (33)


The four subs came through with converted penalty kicks after displaying various degrees of ineptness.  Megan Rapinoe, who converted the clinching spot kick, may have set an Olympic turnover record during her hour of play, in addition to bad corner kicks and free kicks. Alex Morgan's lack of pace and poor touches made defending her easy. Christian Press had two goals called back for offside. The second by a toenail but the first she could have done better to stay onside. She headed wide on another chance, passed poorly, and struggled to keep possession. Rose Lavelle didn't add to the U.S. attack.

Player (Club) caps/goals (age)

Rose Lavelle (OL Reign) 60/15 (26)

Alex Morgan (Orlando Pride) 184/111 (32)

Christen Press (Unattached) 153/63 (32)

Megan Rapinoe (OL Reign) 183/59 (36)

TRIVIAAlex Morgan and Christen Press, who converted from the spot against the Dutch, failed on their kicks when the USA fell at the 2018 Olympic Games in the tiebreaker against Sweden in the quarterfinals.

July 30 in Yokohama, Japan
USA 2 Netherlands 2. (USA wins 4-2 on penalties). Goals: S.Mewis 28, Williams 31; Miedema 18, 54.
USA -- Naeher; O'Hara, Sauerbrunn, Dahlkemper, Dunn;  Horan, Ertz, S.Mewis (Lavelle, 58); Williams (Press, 58), Lloyd (Morgan, 58), Heath (Rapinoe, 64).
Netherlands -- van Veenendaal; Wilms, van der Gracht, Nouwen, Janssen; Roord (Pelova, 97), Groenen; van de Sanden (Beerensteyn, 63), van de Donk, Martens; Miedema.
Yellow cards: USA -- Horan 77, O'Hara 115. Netherlands -- van de Donk 90+4. Red cards: none.
Referee: Kate Jacewicz (Austria).
Att.: behind closed doors.

Shots: 16/21
Shots on target: 4/7
Saves: 5/2
Corner Kicks: 7/4
Fouls: 14/11
Offside: 6/1
Possession: 50%/50%
13 comments about "USA-Netherlands Women's Olympics Player Ratings".
  1. Wayne Norris, July 30, 2021 at 12:49 p.m.

    I gotta agree with most of this. One exception would be Naeher who I would give a 6.

    All but one PK saved were awful efforts by Netherlands and between the questionable goal and "Howler" cross bar "goal" saved by offsides she might get 4-5 if not for PKs.

    frankly Lynn Williams saved the one else stood out

  2. Santiago 1314, July 30, 2021 at 1:12 p.m.

    Obi Wan;  Waves his Fingers at the Opposing Soccer team and says: "This is Not The US Womans Soccer Team YOU are Looking For.!?!?!?"... "Just Win Baby WIN.!!!"...WE BELIEVE THAT WE CAN WIN ... and so Do the other Teams ... Smoke and Mirrors

  3. Bob Ashpole replied, July 30, 2021 at 6:09 p.m.

    I get the impression that some people posting here would have passed on or cut the young Messi, Guardiola, Xavi and Cruyff as being too small or too slow for football.

    Perhaps the biggest problem with elite player development in the US is that coaches will select the fastest players over the most talented thinking that they can teach the fastest players skills and make them smarter later. It is ironic when the speed advantage turns out to be due to early blooming and fleeting.

  4. R2 Dad, July 30, 2021 at 1:28 p.m.

    Vlatko's gamble was that going with 3 of 4 subs over the age of 30 would work out. It did, barely. So how well will those old legs recover for the next match? Only 3 more days til the semi, then 3 more til the final & 3rd place match. So far, Vlatko's keeping his job.

  5. Scott Chaney, July 30, 2021 at 1:33 p.m.

    Carli, time for you to go. Too slow. And Ms. Rapinoe can go with you as she's slow and way too many bad passing decisions. This teams needs a SERIOUS infusion of youth and speed. 

  6. Nick Gabris replied, July 31, 2021 at 12:50 p.m.

    Average age of the USWNT 30+, Other teams 23+. Not so hard to figure out.

  7. Bob Ashpole, July 30, 2021 at 6:21 p.m.

    Miedema is the real deal. And she is only 25.

    During the shootout, the US performance was flawless. Despite the real advantage of going first, The Netherlands wasn't given a chance.

  8. Kevin Leahy, July 30, 2021 at 10:51 p.m.

    First off, the offside rule sucks. If anyone thinks that, Carly Lloyd is even close to the same player who scored 2 gold medal winning goals and a hat trick in a World Cup final you, are kidding yourself. This team would be in serious trouble without Horan & Ertz! Saurebrun was flawless. Dahlkamper has been disappointing. They do have the heart of a champion and it was a great game to watch.

  9. John Soares, July 31, 2021 at 1:20 p.m.

    Must have missed something...
    I could have sworn the USA team just beat the European champion 
    Based on most comments we lost big time 

    Naeher deserves a 12.
    When was the last time a goalie saved 3 penalties 

  10. Erin Wade, July 31, 2021 at 1:21 p.m.

    How about Williams, Press and Lavelle up front for the next game?  Although, I don't care what anyone says - I love Lloyd's work rate and grit - esp defensively. 

  11. Erin Wade replied, July 31, 2021 at 1:22 p.m.

    Then Lavelle could pinch back a little and effectively have 4 midfielders. 

  12. Bob Ashpole replied, July 31, 2021 at 10:06 p.m.

    Lavelle plays attacking mid in a timeless W shape. It is actually a forward position (inside forward). And gives the US an extremely attack oriented posture.

  13. John Sabala replied, August 2, 2021 at 3:14 a.m.

    I agree with Williams and Press up top, but leave Lloyd at the 9. She is not as fast, but I don't see a better player on the roster for hold up play and distruting to the wingers.  Play Lavelle at the 10. 4 solid attacking players with pace and finishing ability. Heath is just too slow, can't beat players 1v1 as in the past and often holds onto the ball too long.

Next story loading loading..

Discover Our Publications