Every stats and record in the FIFA Women's World Cup pointed to the United States of America win over the Netherlands, in the 8 tournaments so far, the USA had won the title 3 times(1991, 1999 & 2015), she had finished in the top two 5 times(1991, 1999, 2011, 2015 & 2019), she had reached the top 3 & 4 of every single tournament, however, like it is often time said, football is not played on a piece of paper but rather on the field of play.
Participating in only her 2nd FIFA Women's World Cup, the Netherlands had exceeded not only her expectation but football followers also. The reigning European women champion had earned her place in the final in a remarkable fashion and were expected to give a good fight against the Americans.
The United States had played the Netherlands on 2 previous occasions and had come out on top with a 2-goal margin at both times with 3-1 & 2-0 and as expected they started with all the pressure. It was a tactical display by the Dutch side, containing the United States attacking threat up to the hour mark when they conceded a spot-kick no thanks to VAR, USA's Megan Rapinoe stepped forward and scored her 6th goal of the tournament, levelled with teammate Alex Morgan and England's Ellen White. The revelation of the tournament Rose Lavelle then double USA's advantage in the 69th minute, she finished off a mazy run into the box with a left-footed shot into the bottom corner. It took the Netherland 77th minute before they drew a save from USA's goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher, that summed up the evening for the Netherlands.
And so, the all-conquering United States on her way to retaining her crown battled past 4 of European elite nations; Spain(R16), France(Q8), England(Q4) and Netherland(F), becoming only the 2nd team to successfully defend the crown after Germany and scored all-time tournament high 26 goals, conceded just 3 goals, her 4th title.
• Megan Rapinoe(USA) Golden Ball winner, Lucy Bronze(ENG) Silver Ball winner, Rose Lavelle(USA) Bronze Ball winner.
• Megan Rapinoe Golden Boot(6 goals, 3 assists with a fewer minute played), Alex Morgan Silver Boot(6 goals, 3 assists)
• Sari Van Veenendaal(DUTCH) Golden Glove
• Jill Ellis became the 1st American coach to defend Women's world cup title.
England 1-2 Sweden;
England world cup campaign ended in a disappointing note after they lost the 3rd place playoff to Sweden 1-2, their 4th goal in 2 matches having only conceded just 1 goal in 5 previous matches prior to the 1-2 loss to the USA.
England was aiming to go 1 better than they did in their last world cup in Canada 2015 where they came 3rd, defeating Norway 2-1 in the playoffs. However, a damaging 1-2 loss to the United States in the semifinals meant they only had a chance to match their 2015 success but Sweden, in their way had other plans, they were aiming for a 3rd women's world cup 3rd Bronze medal at the women's world cup having previously won 3rd place in 1991 & 2011.
Sweden started the match the better side and was rewarded for their early pressure with an 11th-minute goal when Kosovare Asllani tucked home the opener. Sweden doubles their lead midway through the 1st half, Sofia Jakobsson curling effort beat Carly Telford in goal for England. The Lionesses finally came alive after they conceded the 2nd goal and swiftly pulled a goal back a minute past the half-hour mark through Fran Kirby. They thought they had levelled when Ellen White scored but the goal was chopped off by VAR for ball handling. Sweden won 2-1 and got their 3rd Bronze medal in their 8 appearances in the world cup.
Thank you all for being part of the FIFA Women's World Cup.