Lindsey Horan and Becky Sauerbrunn played the full 90 minutes in the USWNT’s 2-0 victory against Nigeria in Q2 Stadium. Crystal Dunn started and played 88 minutes but was replaced by Tierna Davidson in the closing stages of the match. Christen Press scored the winner in first half added time while Lynn Williams provided the second goal.
The U.S. Women’s National Team closed out the Summer Series in Austin, TX. It was the first-ever match at Q2 Stadium and the first time a U.S. National Team played a new stadium’s first match.
The U.S. immediately looked to put pressure on the Super Falcons. Sam Mewis tried to thread a ball through the backline to Megan Rapinoe. A defender got a touch on S. Mewis’s pass and the keeper was able to challenge Rapinoe and prevent an early goal.
The USWNT dominated possession but struggled to create chances and connect progressive passes in the final third. S. Mewis fired from distance in the 19th minute and her shot was saved. Carli Lloyd pressed the Super Falcons on a goal kick and almost forced the Nigerians into a mistake that led to a goal, but no goal was scored.
Christen Press cut past a defender at the top of the 18-yard box and fired from distance in the 32nd minute. But her shot deflected off of the offside Megan Rapinoe before the ball found the back of the net and the goal was disallowed.
Nigeria almost opened the scoring in the 38th minute. Asisat Oshoala was able to pick up the ball on the edge of the 18-yard box, drive into the box and square it to Toni Payne, who fired over the bar.
The U.S. grabbed the lead in added time of the first half. Horan lofted a pass toward the Nigerian backline and Kristie Mewis picked up the second ball. She played it to Carli Lloyd, who poked it to Press. Press made no mistake, curling a low finish into the bottom corner.
On the mark— U.S. Soccer WNT (@USWNT) June 17, 2021
With that goal, @ChristenPress pushes her career total to 61, breaking a tie with Shannon MacMillan to take sole possession of 9th on the #USWNT all-time scoring charts pic.twitter.com/0UjYhvZsHH
The second half started at a fast pace as the USWNT looked to double their advantage. The match became disjointed in the second half as fouls, stoppages of play and substitutions piled up. Emily Sonnett entered the match in the 61st minute and slid into the holding midfield role which allowed Horan to take up a more advanced position.
Nigeria were less of a threat going forward than they were in the first half and dealt with the danger the Super Flacons presented. Nigeria defended well in and around their 18-yard box and although the U.S. were able to play through the midfield with ease but struggled to create chances against the Super Falcons’ compact defense.
Press was denied a brace in the 85th minute. Dunn spotted Megan Rapinoe making a run down the flank and played her into space. Press arrived late in the box and forced Tochukwu Oluehi into a diving save.
Tierna Davidson replaced Dunn in the 89th minute. Substitute Lynn Williams ran onto a Press pass in added time of the second half and rounded the keeper. She rolled the ball into the back of the net.
FT: Lynn Williams on the pitch for just five minutes and she doubles the lead for the U.S. in stoppage time! Quality passing to create that break, terrific run and finish by Williams off the Press assist. #USAvNGA | 2-0 pic.twitter.com/73eVntnau7— The Equalizer (@EqualizerSoccer) June 17, 2021
Adrianna Franch and Sophia Smith did not feature in the team’s 2-0 win.
The USWNT will play Mexico in Connecticut on July 1 and July 5 before departing for the Olympics.