Netherlands sweat on Martens fitness for women's World Cup final

It's time for Team USA vs. the Netherlands in the 2019 Women's World Cup finals in France as the us tries to become back-to-back champions.

From Megan Rapinoe's iconic celebration to Alex Morgan sipping tea after scoring against England in the semifinals, the US Women's National Soccer Team at the World Cup has caused quite the stir. Rapinoe, who was the first professional white athlete to kneel during the US anthem in protest before US Soccer passed a rule that they all had to stand, was asked in France whether she would go to the White House if invited after a win.

Morgan, one of the faces of the United States of America side that has made history by reaching a third consecutive final, has been at the centre of a veritable storm in a tea cup since using the celebration to mark her victor in Tuesday's semi-final.

Morgan, who's playing in her third World Cup, has been one of the top players in the tournament and she'll look to continue that today.

Dutch winger Lieke Martens and USA defender Kelley O'Hara both needed brief on-field treatment near the end of the half after colliding head to head while going for a header. "That doesn't mean that we shouldn't always strive to be better", she said.

The United States will meet the Netherlands at 11 a.m. ET in Lyon, France.

The game will be on FOX.

The latest Women's World Cup final odds list the U.S.as favorites at -275 (risk $275 to win $100) to win outright in regulation plus stoppage time.

Before that, as a girl, she has said that she had to cut her hair short to blend in playing with boys in The Hague.

She's now scored five times at this World Cup, becoming the first player to score two goals in successive games in the World Cup since Brazilia Marta in 2007, after the American's braces against Spain and France.

However, the prize money for the 2018 men's World Cup in Russian Federation was $400 million, and Infantino also hopes to increase the women's tournament from 24 teams to 32.

That would be a remarkable achievement for someone who, like Ellis, has a schooling in football in the USA to thank for her career trajectory.

It is three decades since Wiegman jumped at the chance given to her by Anson Dorrance to play at the University of North Carolina. "But what I love about this group is that they're locked in and they're still hungry", United States coach Jill Ellis said. And - but by now, I'm sure there's plenty of people to watch - who'll be tuning right in right into the Women's World Cup final.

"For me, every game there is another moment that is so special about this team", Rapinoe says.

The Netherlands are undoubtedly an emerging force in the Women's game, but I suspect that this will be a step too far for them against a superior U.S. side. The only Netherlands victory in the series came in the first meeting in 1991 (a 4-3 victory on Dutch soil). It's what they live and breathe.

Not only did the Dutch have one less day to prepare for their final, but they also had to play an additional 30 minutes against Sweden.

Megan Rapinoe of the US during the 2019 FIFA Womens World Cup. "I refuse to respect a man that warrants no respect", she said.

New Manchester United signing Jackie Groenen provided the thrust and the finish to tip them over the line against Sweden in the semis, while Danielle van de Donk's link-up play with Arsenal team-mate and star forward Vivianne Miedema is key.

  • Julie Sanders


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