United States wins the Tournament of Nations
Lavelle, Ertz, Heath and Morgan score for the United States
Orlando Pride forward Alex Morgan made it 4-1 vs. Brazil (Photo credit: Brad Smith/isiphotos.com)
Orlando Pride forward Alex Morgan made it 4-1 vs. Brazil (Photo credit: Brad Smith/isiphotos.com)

Australia and the United States both won on the final day of the 2018 Tournament of Nations at Toyota Park in Bridgeview, Illinois, yet it was the United States that won the trophy this year with a come-from-behind 4-1 victory over Brazil in the finale.

The USWNT had to win by two or more against Brazil (after Australia’s 2-0 result over Japan earlier) to beat the Matildas out for the tournament trophy. They did just that and more, thanks to goals from Washington Spirit midfielder Rose Lavelle, Chicago Red Stars midfielder Julie Ertz, Portland Thorns FC midfielder Tobin Heath and Orlando Pride forward Alex Morgan.

This is the United States’ first 2018 Tournament of Nations title.

Australia 2, Japan 0

Orlando Pride defender Alanna Kennedy and Chicago Red Stars forward Sam Kerr scored as Australia beat Japan 2-0 in their final match of the 2018 Tournament of Nations. Japan, the recent AFC Women’s Asian Cup champions, could not win the tournament heading into Thursday’s game and finished in last place with an 0-3-0 record.

Kennedy got her team on the board first to kick off the second half when she sent a low free kick from outside the 18-yard box. Her shot snuck past Japan goalkeeper Chika Hirao at the near post.

It would only be right for Kerr to get one of her own on her Red Stars home turf. In the 80th minute, Houston Dash forward Kyah Simon won the ball in the midfield and played a perfectly weighted through ball into Kerr’s stride. Kerr got a touch around Hirao and finished it with her right foot to the far post to seal the game at 2-0.

United States 4, Brazil 1

Washington Spirit midfielder Rose Lavelle, Chicago Red Stars midfielder Julie Ertz, Portland Thorns FC midfielder Tobin Heath and Orlando Pride forward Alex Morgan all scored to ensure the U.S. would win the 2018 Tournament of Nations.

The USWNT found themselves in a difficult spot early when a Brazil transition down the right flank forced an own goal from Tierna Davidson in the 16th minute. North Carolina Courage forward Debinha controlled the ball in the midfield and played in Beatriz down the right side. Beatriz sent a dangerous service in behind the U.S. defense, and Davidson attempted to clear it it snuck past Chicago Red Stars goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher to give Brazil the 1-0 lead.

In the 33rd minute, Lavelle equalized for the United States scoring a half-volley past Brazil goalkeeper Letícia. Seattle Reign FC forward Megan Rapinoe sent the initial service and Morgan got a head on it, tapping it to Thorns midfielder Lindsey Horan. Horan, with time and space to pick out Lavelle, played her at the top of the box where Lavelle was able to hit it one time and score her third international goal.

In the second half, Tobin Heath put on an absolute clinic near the end-line, beating several Brazilian defenders then sending a cheeky service to the far post where Ertz was crashing. Ertz got on the end of it, sliding one home for the 2-1 lead.

Heath then went on to get one of her own not long after providing the assist. Horan played a long ball over to Morgan on the left side and Morgan collected the service and dribbled centrally. Morgan then played a back pass to the top of the box where Heath was tracking. She hit it one time for the two-goal lead in the 61st minute.

The assist-then-goal trend only continued when Morgan scored the game’s final goal in the 77th minute. Rapinoe curled a free kick service into the box where Morgan was completely unmarked. Morgan scored with her left foot one time to seal the game at 4-1.

Next up, the United States will have two friendly matches against Chile (Aug. 31 in Los Angeles and Sept. 4 in San Jose) before World Cup Qualifying.


– Tournament of Nations Match Report –

Match: Australia vs. Japan
Date: August 2, 2018
Competition: Tournament of Nations
Venue: Toyota Park; Bridgeview, Ill.
Kickoff: 5:45 p.m. CT
Attendance: 11,922
Weather: 85 degrees, mostly cloudy

Scoring Summary:    1          2          F
AUS                             0          2          2
JPN                             0          0          0

AUS – Alanna Kennedy                                  47th minute
AUS – Sam Kerr                                             81

AUS: 1-Lydia Williams (capt.); 21-Ellie Carpenter, 14-Alanna Kennedy, 8-Elise Kellond-Knight, 4-Clare Polkinghorne (22-Larissa Crummer, 29); 19-Katrina Gorry (23-Alex Chidiac, 79); 6-Chloe Logarzo (9-Caitlin Foord, 68), 17-Kyah Simon (3-Amy Sayer, 90), 11-Lisa De Vanna (15-Emily Gielnik, 29), 16-Hayley Raso; 20-Sam Kerr
Subs not used: 18-Mackenzie Arnold, 5-Mary Fowler, 7-Laura Alleway
Head coach: Alen Stajcic

JPN: 21-Chika Hirao; 15-Moeno Sakaguchi (12-Hina Sugita, 71), 3-Aya Sameshima (capt.), 4-Shiori Miyake, 22-Risa Shimizu; 6-Saori Ariyoshi, 16-Rin Sumida (19-Rika Masuya, 46); 14-Yui Hasegawa (9-Nahomi Kawasumi, 85), 20-Kumi Yokoyama (24-Narumi Miura, 46), 7-Emi Nakajima (8-Mana Iwabuchi, 46); 11-Mina Tanaka (13-Yuika Sugasawa, 46)
Subs not used: 1-Sakiko Ikeda, 2-Maya Doko, 17-Yuka Momiki, 18-Ayaka Yamashita, 23-Aimi Kunitake
Head coach: Asako Takakura

Stats Summary: AUS / JPN
Shots: 19 / 9
Shots on Goal: 6 / 3
Saves:  3 / 4
Corner Kicks: 4 / 3
Fouls: 9 / 9
Offside: 3 / 5

Misconduct Summary
AUS – Hayley Raso (caution)                         18th minute
JPN – Narumi Miura (caution)                                    46
AUS – Alanna Kennedy (caution)                              75                                               

Referee:  Katja Koroleva (USA)
Assistant Referee 1: Alicia Messer (USA)
Assistant Referee 2:  Jennifer Garner (USA)
4th Official:  Cecile Hinds (TRI)


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

Match: U.S. Women’s National Team vs. Brazil
Date: August 2, 2018
Competition: Tournament of Nation
Kickoff: 8:30 p.m. ET
Attendance:  18,309
Weather: 83 degrees, mostly cloudy

Scoring Summary:    1          2          F
USA                             1          3          4
BRA                             1          0          1

BRA – Tierna Davidson (own goal)                16th minute
USA – Rose Lavelle (Lindsey Horan)            33
USA – Julie Ertz (Tobin Heath)                      53
USA – Tobin Heath (Alex Morgan)                 61
USA – Alex Morgan (Megan Rapinoe)           77

USA: 1-Alyssa Naeher; 22-Emily Sonnett, 4-Becky Sauerbrunn, 12-Tierna Davidson, 19-Crystal Dunn (7-Abby Dahlkemper, 88); 16-Rose Lavelle (5-McCall Zerboni, 46), 2-Julie Ertz, 9-Lindsey Horan; 17-Tobin Heath (14-Casey Short, 69), 13-Alex Morgan (capt.) (23-Christen Press, 90), 15-Megan Rapinoe (10-Carli Lloyd, 80)
Subs not used: 21-Adrianna Franch, 24-Ashlyn Harris, 3-Samantha Mewis, 6-Morgan Brian, 8-Amy Rodriguez, 11-Merritt Mathias, 20-Allie Long
Head coach: Jill Ellis

BRA: 22-Leticia; 23-Rayanne (14-Poliana, 74), 21-Monica, 15-Tayla, 6-Tamires (7-Camila, 36); 18-Thais (20-Raquel, 69), 5-Thaisa (8-Juliana, 90), 11-Adriana, 9-Debinha (2-Millene, 78); 10-Marta (capt.), 16-Beatriz
Subs not used: 1-Barbara, 12-Aline, 3-Daiane, 4-Kathellen, 13-Rilany, 17-Andressinha, 19-Joyce
Head coach: Oswaldo Alvarez (Vadão)

Final Stats Summary: USA / BRA
Shots: 21 / 7
Shots on Goal: 8 / 1
Saves: 0 / 4
Corner Kicks: 4 / 1
Fouls: 15 / 13
Offside: 6 / 1

Misconduct Summary:
USA – Crystal Dunn (caution)                        12th minute
BRA – Camila (caution)                                  44
BRA – Tayla (caution)                        74

Referee: Quetzalli Alvarado (MEX)
Assistant Referee 1: Enedina Caudillo (MEX)
Assistant Referee 2:  Stephanie-Dale Yee Sing (JAM)
4th Official: Mirian Leon (SLV)

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