USA-Canada SheBelieves Cup Player Ratings

Feb. 16 in Orlando, Fla.
USA 2 Canada 0. Goals: Swanson 7, 34.
Att.: 14,697.

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It wasn't a flawless performance by the USA, but Coach Vlatko Andonovski's team outclassed Canada, which 18 months ago won the Olympic gold medal, in every part of the field. Mallory Swanson scored twice in the first half for a 2-0 SheBelieves Cup opening win while Lindsey Horan marshaled the midfield in an especially impressive fashion. 

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


Alyssa Naeher displayed nice form on her diving save of Janine Beckie's 23-yard shot late in the first-half. Her distribution included a quick throw to left back Crystal Dunn and a long boot that found a teammate in midfield. Naeher got away with staying glued to her line on Canadian corner kicks.

Player (Club) caps/goals (age)

Alyssa Naeher (Chicago Red Stars) 87/0 (32)


Central defender Alana Cook helped create a U.S. scoring chance seconds after kickoff with a long ball that Alex Morgan headed on to Lindsey Horan. Cook, who covered for right back Emily Fox when she went deep into Canadian territory, and central partner Becky Sauerbrunn ruled the U.S. half such that Canadian attackers looked levels below what was expected from a team ranked No. 6 in the world. Sauerbrunn's composure on the ball early in second half defused the Canadians' attempt to press. Cook did blunder once, with an aimless cross-field pass that Beckie latched onto for the Canadians' only good shot of the game. By veering into the middle in addition to making runs up flank, Fox added unpredictability to the U.S. attack. She served a ball that Horan headed onto the post. Right back Crystal Dunn, subbed at halftime, passed a defensive test when she outpaced Adriana Leon to a long ball on a rare Canadian counterattack but looked out of sync going forward.

Player (Club) caps/goals (age)

Emily Fox (NC Courage) 25/0 (24)

Alana Cook (OL Reign) 22/0 (25)

Becky Sauerbrunn (Portland Thorns) 213/0 (37)

Crystal Dunn (Portland Thorns) 129/24 (30)


Ashley Sanchez started strong, with a 3rd-minute shot that forced a spectacular save and with her pass to Trinity Rodman after Lindsey Horan and Andi Sullivan sparked the sequence ahead of the first goal. But Sanchez ended a promising 38th-minute buildup with a chip shot to goalkeeper Kailen Sheridan despite time to consider better options. She failed to pull off a shot from near the goal area after Rodman served her up with a golden opportunity, and her touch failed her on some passes. Sullivan's ball-winning tackles set the tone early in the game. Horan's variety of smart passes may have been the key reason why the USA overwhelmed the Canadians. She set up the Mallory Swanson chance soon after kickoff, delivered balls to Alex Morgan and Rodman, and constantly passed crisply in midfield — in addition to her perfect long ball in the 75th minute. Horan's nifty back-heel pass in the U.S. half while under pressure was just one example of her knack for finding teammates. 

Player (Club) caps/goals (age)

Ashley Sanchez (Washington Spirit) 20/3 (23)

Andi Sullivan (Washington Spirit) 40/3 (27)

Lindsey Horan (Lyon, FRA) 124/26 (28)


Trinity Rodman set up the first goal with a low pass into the penalty area after teasing then tricking her way past Allysha Chapman. Alex Morgan tapped Rodman's pass to Mallory Swanson, who with a half-volley hammered it into the net from 17 yards. Swanson scored her second when Vanessa Gilles, while pressured by Morgan near the sideline, foolishly tried to pass back to keeper Sheridan. Swanson pounced on that to make it 2-0. Instead of sticking with the smart low balls into the area, Rodman went high on her next cross and skied it out of bounds. She squandered a chance with 34th minute shot from 12 yards that looked like a pass to keeper. But Rodman's attacks down the right wing until she was subbed in the 78th minute — which included setting up the first U.S. post-halftime chance with a smart low ball — were a major reason why the Canadians spent nearly all their energy on defense. While Morgan played a role in both goals, she over-hit a high cross when a low pass would have been the wiser choice in the 37th minute. When Gilles with another bad pass gifted Morgan the ball, Morgan blasted the ball into the desperate Gilles when she should have been able to easily to skip past Gilles before shooting.

Player (Club) caps/goals (age)

Trinity Rodman (Washington Spirit) 13/2 (20)

Alex Morgan (San Diego Wave) 202/120 (33)

Mallory Swanson (Chicago Red Stars) 85/30 (24)


In a game that was pretty much decided by halftime — the USA had given Canada little reason to believe in a comeback — the subs failed to create the rout that looked to be in the making. Ashley Hatch came on for Morgan and dribbled into a defender on her first foray. Kristie Mewis, from Horan's long ball, set up Hatch just outside the goal area and with more composure Hatch would have taken a touch to round Sheridan instead of striking the ball at her. Lynn Williams from close range failed to poke home a cross from Horan.

Player (Club) caps/goals (age)

Emily Sonnett (OL Reign) 71/1 (29)

Ashley Hatch (Washington Spirit) 16/5 (27)

Kristie Mewis (Gotham FC) 48/7 (31)

Lynn Williams (Gotham FC) 50/15 (29)

Midge Purce (Gotham FC) 23/4 (27)

Taylor Kornieck (San Diego Wave) 10/2 (24)

NOTABLEMallory Swanson has now scored in four straight games, a total of six goals.

NEXT UPUSA-Japan in Nashville, Tenn., Sunday, 3:30 p.m. ET.

Feb. 16 in Orlando, Fla.
USA 2 Canada 0. Goals: Swanson 7, 34.
 Naeher; Fox, Cook, Sauerbrunn, Dunn (Sonnett, 46); Horan (Kornieck, 88), Sullivan, Sanchez (K.Mewis, 61); Rodman (Williams, 78), Morgan (Hatch, 61), Swanson (Purce, 88).
Canada — Sheridan; Lawrence, Buchanan, Gilles, Chapman (Hellstrom, 46); Leon (Lacasse, 57), Fleming, Grosso (Awujo, 65), Beckie (Rose 76); Sinclair (Quinn, 57); Huitema (Viens 76).
Att.: 12,721.
Yellow cards: USA — none. Canada — Fleming 64, Hellstrom 82. Red Cards: none.
Referee: Katia Garcia (Mexico). ARs: Karen Diaz (Mexico), Enedina Caudillo (Mexico). 
Att.: 14,697.

Shots: 14/6
Shots on target: 7/3
Saves: 3/5
Corner Kicks: 6/4
Fouls: 11/12
Offside: 3/0
Possession: 52%/48%

Photo: Jeremy Reper/ISI Photos

2 comments about "USA-Canada SheBelieves Cup Player Ratings".
  1. Chance Hall, February 17, 2023 at 3 p.m.

    Enjoyed the game. Especially enjoyed seeing the younger players on the field. Hoping they are as proud as any of us would be playing for our country. Best part - peeno didn't play !!!

  2. Bob Ashpole, February 17, 2023 at 5:14 p.m.

    I was disappointed in Canada. They aren't the team that they were two cycles ago. Their game plan seemed to be to force the US forwards to leave the game. I do not believe that professional players "accidently" step on opponent's insteps. 

    I only watched the first half. Generally the forwards and mids played very well. After the second goal, it was apparent that the US went to a lower line of confrontation and slowed down the pace of the game. A pretty standard game plan.

    Regarding Dunn's rating, my impression was that her role was to hold in the back to provide protection against a possible counter while the team pressed high. She adds a lot of speed to the back and so the midfielders could push higher. Once the team dropped to a lower line of confrontation, Dunn's speed wasn't needed in the back.

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