They did so in truly dominant fashion, not so much in the final itself, but throughout the tournament.
The US never trailed once in the World Cup, and they set a record with 25 goals scored.
Megan Rapinoe won the Golden Boot and the Golden Ball, and Rose Lavelle won the Bronze Ball for 3rd best player in the tournament. (England’s Lucy Bronze won the Silver Ball).
Jill Ellis also becomes one of two coaches to win back to back World Cups, in the Women’s or Men’s game.
Unlike most of the other games in this tournament, the US did not score in the first 15 minutes of the game, as the Netherlands did well in limiting the US chances on goal.
The US dominated possession, but was not able to get great chances early on.
They started to grow into the game, and had a few good chances, one a half volley by Julie Ertz, a header by Samantha Mewis, and a hard left- footed strike by Alex Morgan.
Each was stopped by Netherlands Keeper Sari van Veenedaal though, who was sensational throughout the game.
The game was 0-0 at halftime, an unfamiliar feeling for the USWNT, and things were tense, at least for the fans if not the players.
The US finally broke through in the 61st minute.
Alex Morgan had been kicked by a high boot by a Dutch Defender. What was initially missed was examined by the referee after VAR determined a reply was needed, and a penalty kick was correctly given.
Megan Rapinoe was cool as you like, sending van Veenedaal the wrong way to give the US a 1-0 lead.
This really opened up the game, as the Netherlands went looking for an equalizer, and this gave the US room to counterattack.
The US doubled the lead in the 69th minute, after Crystal Dunn won a tackle, and then pushed the ball to Sam Mewis in the midfield. Mewis played in Rose Lavelle, who made a great run through midfield, faked out a few defenders, and smashed a shot into the corner past a diving van Veenedaal.
The US was able to control the game in the last 10 minutes, strangling the Dutch attack, and frequently winning the ball back, especially substitutes Christen Press and Ali Krieger.
Then the final whistle came, and the long journey this US team has been on was complete.
This World Cup was a great tournament, and it showed how far so many teams have come, teams like the Netherlands, like Italy, like England.
But it also showed that the USWNT is still on top, and they were deserved World Cup Champions in 2019.
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