USWNT clinches knockout round spot at World Cup

Posted at 2:07 PM, Jun 16, 2019
and last updated 2019-06-16 16:31:55-04

Carli Lloyd scored two of the United States’ three first-half goals, as the USWNT clinched a spot in the knockout rounds of the 2019 Women’s World Cup with a 3-0 defeat of Chile on Sunday in Paris.

Julie Ertz scored the other goal, while Lloyd missed a penalty kick in her bid for a hat trick.

All goals came in the first 35 minutes. The second half explosion never materialized, stymied by Chilean goalkeeper Christiane Endler.

The U.S. will meet Sweden on Friday for the honors of winning the group and a potential quarterfinal test from hosts France. A draw or better sends the women to the group title.

The USWNT is also one goal away from matching the record for most goals scored in a group stage. Norway netted 17 in 1995.

[ MORE: Pogba says he could leave Man Utd ]

The Yanks went ahead with a historic, beautiful goal from Lloyd, who was the first to a weak clearance and smashed the ball into the side netting.

It was her sixth-straight World Cup game with a goal, a new record.

Chile fell behind 2-0 when Ertz snapped her head back to push a corner kick off the keeper and into the goal.

The U.S. was fortunate that an offside flag stopped goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher from a howler of a concession, and the defending wasn’t always on point given the straight-forward nature of the win.

Lloyd scored her second with a powerful header off Tierna Davidson’s corner. That made her the 10th player to score 10 goals at the Women’s World Cup.

To be fair to the Yanks, the score line could’ve been much higher had PSG goalkeeper and Chilean captain Endler not been outstanding for most of the match. She made a pair of unreal saves on Christen Press in the second half to keep it 3-0. heading into the final 25 minutes.

It took a penalty call through VAR to put the USWNT on the true precipice of four. The foul was on the chalk of the 18, which counts as the 18, but Lloyd smashed her penalty wide of the post.