USA-Canada Concacaf W Championship Player Ratings

July 18 in Monterrey, Mexico
USA 1 Canada 0. Goal: Morgan pen. 78.

Neither the USA nor Canada conceded a goal in their four games leading up to Monday's final to decide the region's first Olympic spot. Atrocious shooting prevented goals besides Alex Morgan's 78th-minute penalty kick for the 1-0 U.S. victory. For however frustrating the mistaken-ridden USA's performance was, its frequent attacks certainly wore down the offensively uninventive Canadians. The fitter, faster and more persistent Americans can feel deserving winners of a game that looked in danger of ending in a stalemate until Rose Lavelle was fouled in the penalty area.

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

The nadir of Alyssa Naeher's shoddy distribution came when she kicked a ball kick out of bounds. In the first half, she punched away a corner kick that flew into the center of the goal area. Her five saves came on non-threatening shots.

Player (Club) caps/goals (age)

Alyssa Naeher (Chicago Red Stars) 83/0 (34)

Right back Sofia Huerta got beaten early and often by Nichelle Prince and was lucky that Prince shot weakly in the 6th and 7th minute and Sophia Smith tracked back to intervene in the 17th minute. Huerta's defensive struggles seemed to drain her attacking confidence and she failed to connect well with the midfield or frontline until the 44th minute — when she set up Smith's super close-range chance. In the first half, Canada rarely tested left back Emily Fox. She struggled to attack for the USA down the left but passed smartly when unable to dribble through. Central defender Alana Cook fended off a Canadian attacker after a dangerous pass in the penalty area from Naeher and with Becky Sauerbrunn restricted Canada's attacks down the middle. Sauerbrunn, who won a couple headers late in the game, generally played it safe with short lateral passes but did spark an attack with a pass out of the back in the second half.

Player (Club) caps/goals (age)

Sofia Huerta (OL Reign) 19/0 (29)

Alana Cook  (OL Reign) 13/0 (25)

Becky Sauerbrunn (Portland Thorns) 207/0 (37)

Emily Fox (Racing Louisville) 17/0 (24)

The midfield trio, perhaps unaccustomed to defending as frequently, misplayed the ball too often upon getting it to create a rhythm. Lindsey Horan, yellow-carded for a foul in Canada's half, shot wide, high and into defenders. Horan's highlight came when she stole the ball in the U.S. half, dribbled 50-plus yards and served up a major chance for Mallory Pugh. Like Horan's, Rose Lavelle's performance despite its many flaws was praiseworthy for its persistence. Lavelle over-hit a pair of corner kicks, lofted a cross easily headed clear when a low pass would have been much more lethal. But four minutes after she lost the ball in her own half, she darted into the penalty area and got clipped by the clumsy Allysha Chapman. Andi Sullivan mainly covered for the other two in her uneventful outing that ended on a high note when she cleanly robbed a Canadian in penalty area late in the game.

Player (Club) caps/goals (age)

Rose Lavelle (OL Reign) 78/21 (27)

Lindsey Horan (Lyon, FRA) 116/25 (28)

Andi Sullivan (Washington Spirit) 32/3 (26)

It likely would have been a better game if Alex Morgan hadn't shot wide from 11 yards with plenty of time and lots of net to aim for after a pass from Sophia Smith in the 4th minute. The veteran center forward didn't break through for another shot until she converted her spot kick. Mallory Pugh should have finished at least one of her chances. She impressively dribbled from her own half in the 31st minute but shot down the middle, as she did when Horan set her up. Neither Pugh nor Smith crossed effectively and Smith like Pugh will rue not scoring at least once from her chances. They included a mis-play inside the goal area and a shot wide from inside the penalty area after she was set up well by Morgan.

Player (Club) caps/goals (age)

Sophia Smith (Portland Thorns) 21/8 (21)

Alex Morgan (San Diego Wave) 196/117 (33)

Mallory Pugh (Chicago Red Stars) 78/24 (25)

Bringing in four subs starting in the 88th minute looked like a time-wasting maneuver, but they did help pin Canada down in its half for five minutes of stoppage time.

Player (Club) caps/goals (age)

Naomi Girma (San Diego Wave) 6/0 (22)

Trinity Rodman (Washington Spirit) 7/2 (20)

Midge Purce (Gotham FC) 19/4 (26)

Taylor Kornieck (San Diego Wave) 5/1 (23)

TRIVIA: The first game Canadian women's national team history was a 2-0 loss to the USA July 7, 1986 in Blaine, Minnesota. It marked the fifth game for the USA, which got goals by Marcia McDermott and Joan Dunlap-Seivold. Canada won a rematch, 2-1, two days later at the same venue, with Lisa Gmitter scoring for the USA.

July 18 in Monterrey, Mexico
USA 1 Canada 0. Goal: Morgan pen. 78.
USA — Naeher; Huerta, Cook, Sauerbrunn, Fox; Lavelle (Kornieck, 90+2), Horan, Sullivan; Smith (Purce, 88), Morgan (Girma, 89), Pugh (Rodman, 89).
Canada  — Sheridan; Riviere (Chapman, 61), Buchanan, Giles, Lawrence; Fleming, Scott, Quinn (Grosso, 57); Beckie, Sinclair (Huitema, 68), Prince (Leon, 67).
Yellow cards: USA — Horan 41; Canada — Sinclair 46.
Red cards: none.
Referee: Katia Garcia (Mexico).
Att.: 17,247.

Shots: 17/11
Shots on target: 6/5
Saves: 5/5
Corner Kicks: 7/1
Fouls: 4/8
Offside: 1/1
Possession: 55%/45%


18 comments about "USA-Canada Concacaf W Championship Player Ratings".
  1. Kevin Leahy, July 19, 2022 at 5 a.m.

    It seems the biggest issue facing the team is, it's inability to consistently finish quality chances. There have been so many times that, the goal goes begging. Fix that and you will have something.

  2. Santiago 1314 replied, July 19, 2022 at 6:09 a.m.

    Revenge is a Dessert Best Served COLD and UGLY.!!!
    Beat them at their Own Game
    (Which is what should have Happened Last Year.!!!.. because Canada really Sucks.!!!)
    Way to go Gals.!!! A Truly USA effort.!!!
    Proud of You All.!!!
    10s for Everyone.!!!
    Just WON Baby, WON.!!!

  3. R2 Dad, July 19, 2022 at 6:05 a.m.

    Result should have been different. Coach that wins tournament should,  for many reasons, praise their players. But UEFA coaches at the Euros will see a younger team that is creatively rudderless without Macario and a back line that rarely defends well when called to defend at all. Congrats to the team for persevering--tougher challenges lie ahead.

  4. Bob Ashpole, July 19, 2022 at 7:11 a.m.

    It was a match of missed opportunities for both teams. This was by far the best game of the competition. The compressed schedule took its toll of both teams and of good soccer as well.

    They played well the first 30 minutes and then they appeared to switch off. The relapsed into the the lethargic pass around the back style and never regained their rhythm in that half. 

    The second half was strange. The contrast in fitness between the two sides was apparent. Canada used to put in fresh legs, but the US stayed with its starters until the end. While the US seemed to find a second wind, Canadian players were cramping. That was impressive. 

    While the US still had the same problems as in earlier matches after the first 30 minutes, in general they were better motivated. At one point in the second half I was worried that too many players were going forward in the attack to be safely positioned for a counterattack. 

    Finally the US did a good job of killing off the last 10 minutes for the win. 

    I probably would not have said so many positive things if I hadn't been so critical in the run up to the finals. The players have the heart, but the coaching and management are not keeping up with the players. 

  5. Chris Madden, July 19, 2022 at 8:10 a.m.

    Mallory Pugh a 6? Grade inflation on steriods. 

  6. Wooden Ships, July 19, 2022 at 9:49 a.m.

    Congrats on the win ladies. Several observations. Fun game to watch, even with many missed scoring chances (more so for us). We look rusty on our shooting almost as if we don't train enough. As Santi referenced the men, we lack confident and capable dribblers in the center of the field. Horan looked fatigued and slow, yes coming back from injury, compressed schedule and heat. Watching the Euros, we look much slower than all the teams making the quarters. Technically behind as well. Bob, you've not been a fan of Vlat(d), from early on. Jill was very successful but not sure she wouldn't have similar challenges now. I do think Vlat gives more freedom than Berhalter, which is a good thing. On just a couple instances did Morgan look like she fit. There are a few things I've never liked about her game and with better opponents in wait I see her more as a liability in our attack (well taken penalty by the way). I see Purce and Rodman, while Cat recovers, as being more effective. Our pressure was the difference last night, not our technical skills. Some of the starters found their second or third wind last night, the gamble of leaving them on worked. 

    I got to be honest, I'm saddened by our continued body language of our players during the anthem. Too many are so into themselves and their shame they feel makes them look fake. What great struggles-conflicts has the generation endured, lol? Unless, I missed it, our number 1, upset with life and her country, Rapinoe was somewhere in back or MIA during the celebration. She didn't get on, almost did, did that become more important to her than the team victory. Many of us have travelled, played and lived in other countries. As I asked Ric a couple years ago, at what point will all this passive aggressive contempt for your own country and very existence be reconciled. His response was "not until everyone understands", which is an immeasurable goal. I hope I live long enough to see someday, an enthusiasm and gratefulness, for wearing the National team jersey. 

  7. Santiago 1314 replied, July 19, 2022 at 11:12 a.m.

    Spot ON, on Everything Wooden... Only 3 Players had their Hand over their Hearts, and NONE Sang... At Least they didn't try that SILLY Guy thing; One Arm Interlocked, while trying to put their Hand over their Heart.
    u17 and u20 had their Hand over their Heart and Sang...
    So, somewhere, from "Here-To-There", they are being "Brainwashed" to "Dislike" their National Anthem and by Extension, Their Country.!!!

  8. Philip Carragher replied, July 19, 2022 at 11:21 a.m.

    Rapinoe was celebrating and looking filled with delight after the final whistle blew. I saw it.

  9. Santiago 1314 replied, July 19, 2022 at 12:14 p.m.

    Philip, I would like to Extend and Revise my Comments on Rapinoe,
    I thought she handled the Situation Well... Even though, Vlatko, didn't give her a "Curtain Call" and sent in All the Young Subs.
    She seemed Genuinely Happy and was "Q"ing Up on the Side-Line with the Rest of the Players, getting Ready to Rush the Field and Celebrate at the Final Whistle...
    She Didn't "bud'In" and take Over the Trophy "Hoisting" as a Captian has the "Right" to.
    My Take on the Whole thing was, USSF only Brought her IN, because they Knew she was getting the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the Same Week... 
    It was "Good" PR from USSF Perspective....
    Once she came back, she was a Non-Factor.
    No Chance she will just "Fade" into the Background any time soon, Politically Speaking...
    Hopefully(For my Daughters Sake) she will use her "Platform" to Defend Title IX from Trans-Men Taking over Women's Athletics...
    She SHOULD be Done with the National Team.(Except for a Farewell Game)

  10. Wooden Ships replied, July 19, 2022 at 12:37 p.m.

    My mistake then Phillip, I didn't catch her. Good to hear she was taking part. Right on Santi with this Title IX situation. I believe she will find herself in a paradox. 

  11. Kent James replied, July 19, 2022 at 1:45 p.m.

    I thnk people should be careful about ascribing feelings to someone and then criticizing them for the feelings you give them.  

  12. Bob Ashpole replied, July 19, 2022 at 2:40 p.m.

    Kent, that was what I was thinking too. Even in high school football the 20 minutes prior to taking the field was devoted to getting mentally prepared. And the focus on the game didn't diminish until after the game was over. 

    I expect no less from professional athletes who are about to start a match.

  13. Kent James, July 19, 2022 at 1:40 p.m.

    The US was clearly the better team, and deserved the win.  The Canadians were barely able to get shots on goal, and those that were, were either weak (luckily for us, Prince's finishing was not nearly as good as her dribbling) or from distance.  We set up a lot of good chances, and either got stifled by the Canandian keeper (who made a couple of very good saves), or just missed.  Does Alex Morgan's near miss count as bad finishing?  Nicely worked goal, she takes it one touch, inside of the foot, curving in at the near post, but a foot wide.  So that was almost an excellent finish, but not quite.  

    I think the ratings are accurate (I guess Morgan's rating is boosted by the clutch PK, which is fine).  

    That being said, given our dominance, I thought we should have done better (3-0, at least).  A few coaching and/or tactical issues.  First, they were attacking our back 4 (plus DCM) with 6 players, leaving them covering our front 3 with 3 (and the flanks relatively unprotected).  Yet we continued to knock the ball around 5 v 6.  I thought we shoud have either played the ball to the front three (but where they could protect it, not always to their head), so we could attack the goal 3 v 3 (and our flank players were more likely to get involved than their flank players were, increasing our numerical advantage).  Additionally, when we attempted to play from our outside backs to our outside MF, the latter were checking back into the Canadian coverage; had our outside MF stayed deeper, we could have by-passed their coverage and created a numerical advantage in front of their goal.  Along those same lines, Lavelle (who to her credit, often came back to provide support) needs to not always play the ball back or square; a number of times, she had space behind her (had she turned with the ball) and instead played to back (one-touch) to teammates who were already covered.  Lavelle dribbling at goal from the midfield will create good opportunities.  

    We did create a lot of good opportunities from the flank, but again, we could have done better.  We often beat the defender on the wing, and then when we could dribble closer to goal, we hit a cross from farther away.  IF you've got someone picked out, that's fine.  But too often, it was into heavy traffic (Canada defended the area in front of the goal quite well).  I would have like to have seen more players take a bit more time and get the ball closer to goal (and while the 6 yd box was very crowded, I think we had people open behind that wave, at the penalty spot, e.g.).  Dribbling along the endine in the box is one of the most likely scenarios to create a goal. 

  14. Kent James, July 19, 2022 at 1:41 p.m.


    Finally, why wait for the 88th minute to make any subs? The conditions were clearly difficult, and while we did seem to have more energy than the Canadians, after we scored our goal, our front line (especially Smith) were visibly tired.
    But generally well done.The women played hard, used their skills, were creative and persistent, and did well under pressure. Deserved champions. 

  15. Bob Ashpole replied, July 19, 2022 at 2:49 p.m.

    Smith has a lot of potential but she repeatedly shows how young and inexperienced she is. I expected a sub for her at the 60 minute mark. I can only assume that the players that I expected to see were not 100% fit. Especially given how dependent our defense was on forwards pressuring aggressively.

  16. Santiago 1314 replied, July 19, 2022 at 3:36 p.m.

    Left, maybe I Fail the SA Rules Test... But USA did have 3 Sub Windows to use..???  Correct.???
    Vlatko wanted to Introduce Girma for a 5th Back...
    Switching to a 5-3-2; with TRod and Purce Chasing up Front...
    Could have been a Little Earlier, but, if it ain't Broke, Don't Fix it...
    Only reason Korniek got IN, was Because Lavelle went Down Injured....
    So bringing in the Tall Girl, to Defend Corners was Good Idea, But, Now we were playing a 5-2-3.???... Unless he moved TRod or Purce Back to Midfield.??? 
    Not sure if they knew that.??? Could have been a Backfire, if they got Overwhelmed in the Midfield, but Time Team Out... Whew.!!!!

  17. stewart hayes, July 19, 2022 at 5:40 p.m.

    Well the short answer, they played better.  Don't know if coach deserves the credit.  He could have figured out Huerta would need some help before the game started, would have been smarter. 

    A suggestion for the ladies.  When you miss a sitter .... show some emotion.  If you keep all that frustration inside it's not good for your game.   I guess they've all learned it from Morgan. 

  18. James Madison, July 19, 2022 at 9:06 p.m.

    The US played its best game of the tournament and obviously was fitter than the Canada side, but was still fortunate to have won without extra time and kicks from the mark. Better defense and a combination of sharper passing and more patience are needed. Huerta presumbly was played instead of O'Hara because she is younger.  However, her assessment was spot on. O'Hara would have had the same difficulty on defense, but would have been more effective getting forard. Sullivan should havve been marked the same as Horan and Lavelle, wheether that was 5 or 6, and the marks for the front three are generous.

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