Australia, United States win on Day 1 of the Tournament of Nations
Kerr scores for Australia and Morgan gets a hat trick for the United States
Australia and the United States celebrate during their Tournament of Nations wins. (Photo credit: Brad Smith/
Australia and the United States celebrate during their Tournament of Nations wins. (Photo credit: Brad Smith/

Australia and the United States both won on Day 1 of the 2018 Tournament of Nations at Children’s Mercy Park in Kansas City, Kansas. It was a day that featured 33 NWSL players seeing minutes between the four teams — Australia, Brazil, Japan and the United States — taking part in the tournament.

The tournament now shifts to Pratt & Whitney Stadium in East Hartford, Connecticut for a doubleheader on Sunday.


Australia 3, Brazil 1

Chicago Red Stars forward Sam Kerr scored as Australia beat Brazil 3-1 to open the 2018 Tournament of Nations. It’s a strong start to the tournament for the Matildas, who won the first edition of the four-team tournament last year.

Kerr’s goal came in the 50th minute. Tameka Butt played a through ball and Kerr raced onto the end of it on the right flank. Kerr took a few touches and then hit a high, hard right-footed shot that beat Brazil goalkeeper Bárbara on the near post.

Australia scored the first goal in the 9th minute after an own goal from Orlando Pride defender Poliana. The goal came after a good defensive clearance from Poliana set up the set piece, but Poliana tried to head the corner away and redirected it into her own net.

Australia scored the second goal in the 38th minute on another corner kick as Butt tapped in a misclearance from Brazil following a corner kick from Pride midfielder Emily van Egmond.

Brazil scored in the 79th minute after Pride midfielder Camila played a long ball over the top to her Orlando teammate Marta on the left flank. Marta dribbled towards the box and sent a low pass right along the endline. North Carolina Courage midfielder Debinha tapped it past Seattle Reign FC goalkeeper Lydia Williams for the score.

Camila subbed on in the 61st minute, her first appearance for Brazil since tear her ACL last fall.

Williams came up big in the 85th minute with a kick save to keep Brazil from finding another goal. Marta put on some moves in the box and played a pass right into the middle of the box, but Beatriz’s shot was stopped by Williams.

Portland Thorns FC forward Caitlin Foord, who has yet to be able to take the field for Portland so far this season, subbed on in the 86th minute, making her return to for the Matildas following right lis franc repair.

Australia wore black armbands in the match in honor of Reign defender Steph Catley’s father, who died this week after a battle with cancer. Catley was originally named to the squad but withdrew earlier this week.

Australia will next face the United States on Sunday and Brazil will meet Japan.


United States 4, Japan 2

Later Thursday night, Orlando Pride forward Alex Morgan tallied a hat trick and the United States won 4-2 over Japan in their opening game of the 2018 Tournament of Nations. It’s Morgan’s fourth career hat trick and she now has 89 international goals in her career.

Morgan’s first goal came in 18th minute and finished off a quick passing sequence started by Utah Royals FC forward Christen Press. Press found Seattle Reign FC forward Megan Rapinoe in space on the left side and Rapinoe then played the ball square across the middle of the box for Morgan. The perfectly placed ball found Morgan in between two defenders and she tapped it home for the game’s first goal.

Japan immediately leveled the match just two minutes later on a goal by Mina Tanaka, but Morgan wouldn’t take long to score again.

Her second came just eight minutes after her first, a strong header off a chipped pass from Portland Thorns FC defender Emily Sonnett, who started the game at right back. It’s the first assist of Sonnett’s international career.

Morgan’s third goal came in the 56th minute, after some brilliant individual work on the right flank from Portland Thorns FC forward Tobin Heath.

Morgan now has 16 goals in her last 16 games for the United States.

Rapinoe scored the United States’ final goal of the game in the 66th minute, following a quick give-and-go with Washington Spirit midfielder Rose Lavelle. Rapinoe, of course, followed her goal with a memorable celebration.

Lavelle subbed into the match in the the 64th minute, her first appearance for the USWNT since September 2017 after recovering from a hamstring injury.

Japan added another goal in the 76th minute, on a curling shot from Moeno Sakaguchi that beat Chicago Red Stars goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher at the far post.


The United States will next face Australia on Sunday and Japan will take on Brazil.


Full highlights of the USA’s win over Japan:

– Tournament of Nations Match Report –


Match: Brazil vs. Australia
Date: July 26, 2018
Competition: Tournament of Nations

Venue: Children’s Mercy Park; Kansas City, Kan.
Kickoff: 3:15 p.m. CT
Attendance: 10,307
Weather: 75 degrees, mostly cloudy


Scoring Summary:          1            2            F
BRA                                  0            1            1
AUS                                  2            1            3


AUS –  Poliana (Own Goal)                        9th minute

AUS – Tameka Butt                                    38

AUS – Sam Kerr (Tameka Butt)                 50

BRA – Debinha (Marta)                             79



BRA: 1-Bárbara; 3-Daiane (4-Kathellen, 82), 5-Thaisa, 6-Tamires (19-Joyce, 75), 9-Debinha, 10-Marta (capt.), 14-Poliana, 16-Beatriz, 17-Andressinha (7-Camila, 62), 18-Thaís (11-Adriana, 54), 21-Mônica

Subs not used: 12-Aline, 22-Letícia, 2-Millene, 8-Juliana, 13-Rilany, 15-Tayla, 20-Raquel

Head coach: Oswaldo Alvarez (Vadão)

: 1-Lydia Williams (capt.); 4-Clare Polkinghorne, 6-Chloe Logarzo (9-Caitlin Foord, 86), 8-Elise Kellond-Knight, 10-Emily Van Egmond, 13-Tameka Butt (23-Alex Chidiac, 75), 14-Alanna Kennedy, 16-Hayley Raso (11-Lisa De Vanna, 69), 17-Kyah Simon (19-Katrina Gorry, 58), 20-Sam Kerr (5-Mary Fowler, 90+3), 21-Ellie Carpenter

Subs not used: 18-Mackenzie Arnold, 2-Amy Sayer, 7-Laura Alleway, 15-Emily Gielnik, 22-Larissa Crummer,

Head coach: Alen Stajcic

Stats Summary: BRA / AUS
Shots: 12 / 6
Shots on Goal: 4 / 2
Saves: 0 / 3
Corner Kicks: 2 / 5
Fouls: 14 / 14
Offside: 2 / 1


Misconduct Summary:

AUS – Kyah Simon (caution)                                   27th minute

AUS – Emily Van Egmond (caution)                       34

AUS – Elise Kellond-Knight (caution)                     54

BRA – Thaisa (caution)                                             86

BRA – Joyce                                                              90+2    


Referee: Christina Unkel (USA)
Assistant Referee 1: Jennifer Garner (USA)
Assistant Referee 2: Alicia Messer (USA)
4th Official: Karen Abt (USA)


– U.S. Women’s National Team Match Report –

Match: U.S. Women’s National Team vs. Japan
Date: July 26, 2018
Competition: 2018 Tournament of Nations
Venue: Children’s Mercy Park; Kansas City, Kansas
Kickoff: 6:15 p.m. CT
Attendance: 18,467 (sellout)
Weather: 80 degrees, sunny

Scoring Summary: 1 2 F 
USA                          2 2 4
JPN                           1 1 2

USA – Alex Morgan (Megan Rapinoe) 18th minute
JPN – Mina Tanaka (Yui Hasegawa) 20
USA – Alex Morgan (Emily Sonnett) 26
USA – Alex Morgan 56
USA – Megan Rapinoe 66
JPN – Moeno Sakaguchi (Rika Masuya) 76

USA : 1-Alyssa Naeher; 22-Emily Sonnett, 7-Abby Dahlkemper, 12-Tierna Davidson, 19-Crystal Dunn; 2-Julie Ertz (16-Rose Lavelle, 64), 9-Lindsey Horan (3-Samantha Mewis, 74), 6-Morgan Brian (5-McCall Zerboni, 46); 23-Christen Press (17-Tobin Heath, 54), 13-Alex Morgan (capt.) (10-Carli Lloyd, 73), 15-Megan Rapinoe (14-Casey Short, 74)
Subs not used : 4-Becky Sauerbrunn, 8-Amy Rodriguez, 11-Merritt Mathias, 20-Allie Long, 21-Adrianna Franch, 24-Harris 
Head coach: Jill Ellis

JPN : 18-Ayaka Yamashita; 3-Aya Sameshima (capt.), 4-Shiori Miyake, 6-Saori Ariyoshi (16-Rin Sumida, 86), 7-Emi Nakajima (9-Nahomi Kawasumi, 59), 8-Mana Iwabuchi (19-Rika Masuya, 60), 11-Mina Tanaka (20-Kumi Yokoyama, 59), 14-Yui Hasegawa (13-Yuika Sugasawa, 67), 15-Moeno Sakaguchi, 22-Risa Shimizu, 24-Narumi Miura
Subs not used: 1-Sakiko Ikeda, 2-Maya Doko, 12-Hina Sugita, 17-Yuka Momiki, 21-Chika Hirao, 23-Aimi Kunitake 
Head coach: Asako Takakura

Final Stats Summary: USA / JPN 
Shots: 15 / 11
Shots on Goal: 7 / 3
Saves: 1 / 3
Corner Kicks: 2 / 1
Fouls: 6 / 3
Offside: 2 / 6

Misconduct Summary:

Referee: Carol-Ann Chenard (CAN)
Assistant Referee 1: Chantal Boudreau (CAN)
Assistant Referee 2: Marie-Han Gagnon-Chretien (CAN)
4th Official: Sheena Dickson (CAN)

Budweiser Woman of the Match: Alex Morgan

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