Summer of Soccer Sundaystravaganaza (Part 1): USWNT vs Netherlands

Sam’s Soccer Safe Space for Stoolies


Hi haters,

Not gonna lie. The summer of soccer has been great. I’m gonna miss waking up (almost) everyday knowing that there is great international soccer in the direct future. But all good things must come to an end, and no better way to do so then with the United States of America dancing on the haters’ graves.

To win both, of course, you gotta win the first. So let’s take a look at the first half of our TEAM MERICA doubleheader (with a nice little Copa interlude hiding in the middle)…



Quick reminder of how the bracket has shaken out so far:



Netherlands [+765]
USWNT [-275]
Draw [+385]

So first off, congrats to the Dutch for making it through their half of the bracket. You can only beat the teams they put in front of you, and the Netherlands have done exactly that, pulling out close wins over New Zealand, Cameroon, Canadia, Japan, Italy and Sweden.

The haters will say they haven’t beaten anybody good, and the haters have a point. Canadia and Japan are not pushovers, and Sweden’s counterattacking style can sometimes cause problems for better opponents, but none of those three teams is as good – on the whole – as France or England… who the USWNT just got done beating.

Point being: the Dutch are biggggggggggg underdogs for good reason. Could they pull an upset? I wouldn’t say it is unlikely but not out of the realm of possibility for several reasons that we will get into in a minute…

So what can we expect from the Netherlands?

They aren’t as good defensively as either France or England, but the Dutch do have some talent going forward that could cause the US problems if they fall asleep. Vivianne Miedema and Lieke Martens are their main threats up top, with Danielle van de Donk helping feed them from the midfield. Their wingers come in highly rated but, from the games I’ve watched, have not been all that dangerous at all and can be exploited on the back side. Think that could be a huge problem for the Dutchies.

So what can we expect from USA?

Here is the XI that Jill Ellis is going with:


What could trip the US up?

1) Injuries – Morgan, Rapinoe and Lavelle have all been hobbled throughout the course of the tournament. Ellis has a ton of talent on the bench that would likely be plenty good enough to beat the Dutch if given the chance, but the coach has been incredibly slow to pull the trigger on subs. IF one or more of the players listed above aren’t fully fit and IF Ellis doesn’t make switches, that could be an issue.

2) No Lindsey Horan – she brings a playmaking ability to the table offensively that Mewis (as good as she has been) simply doesn’t. I have pointed it out on several occasions throughout the tournament. Hopefully it doesn’t come back to bite us with the team stagnating offensively. They shouldn’t – this team has plenty of ways to crack open the Dutch defense as it is. But, for my money, disappointing personnel decision nonetheless.



Too big. Too fast. Too strong. Too experienced. Too confident. Too good Too American.

USA to win 2-0.


Brazil vs Peru this afternoon followed by another big one: USMNT vs Mexico tonight.

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Samuel Army