They did it again! It was spectacular watching another USWNT World Cup win. Megan Rapinoe was calm and collected and Rose Lavelle was sensational. This team and this nation’s women are the best at soccer.
The USWNT have four World Cup victories. But U.S. Soccer has dragged it’s feet in paying them what they deserve. Honestly, what more do they have to do to earn equal pay?
This Isn’t New. USWNT Win World Cup after World Cup
Unlike women’s soccer, the first men’s World Cup was in 1930. The USMNT had 21 opportunities since 1930 to qualify and play in World Cups. Still, they only qualified for ten World Cups. Since their third-place finish in 1930, their best finish is eighth. To call the USMNT lackluster is, to say the least.
Much different to the USMNT is the USWNT. Today, the USWNT won their fourth World Cup title, in just eight World Cups. It’s absolutely incredible. In 50-percent of Women’s World Cups, the USWNT walk away with the trophy. And this doesn’t even count the four Olympic Gold Medals the USWNT have. In just six Summer Olympics, they’ve won it all four times. So, in 14 Women’s World Cups and Summer Olympics, the US Women were victorious eight times. Eight times! Success like this is unheard of in any other sport.
Breaking Records Left and Right
Recall the 12 records and stats that displayed how truly amazing the USWNT is.
That was before today’s USWNT World Cup win. Now, they’ve further extended and set even more records. This win marks 12 consecutive World Cup match wins, which surpasses the 2002-2006 Brazilian men. They also surpassed the 1999 USWNT and 2003 German women for most goals in a Women’s World Cup tournament. Wins, goals, appearances, titles. Whatever the category of success is, the USWNT is at the top.
Additionally, even before any number from the 2019 Women’s World Cup Final comes out, the 2015 Women’s World Cup Final already holds the record for the most-viewed soccer game in the U.S. So, let’s get this straight. They get the best views. Their views generate more income. And the USWNT are the top-selling national team, men’s or women’s.
Without a doubt, the USWNT deserve to be paid more than the USMNT. But, at a minimum, U.S. Soccer needs to pay them equally. It’s the justice they earned.
Yet again, the USWNT won another World Cup final. These women are on fire. Breaking records left and right, fighting for equal pay, and even getting into beef with President Trump himself. Though many called them “classless“, “unsportsmanlike“, or worse, these incredible and strong women stood, unaffected. In their dominance, they’ve set themselves apart from the historic men and women’s World Cup teams. Now, more than ever, the U.S. women are proving that they deserve equal pay (if not more) to the U.S. Men’s National Team. Here are 12 USWNT stats and records that display how truly great American women are at soccer.
Even though the USWNT were already the leaders for Women’s World Cup titles, winning the 2019 Women’s World Cup further extended their record. In fact, with their 2019 Women’s World Cup victory, their title win-percentage is 50-percent. Eight tournaments, four championships. This team is unreal.
The USWNT now holds the record for most consecutive finals appearances. This USWNT stat is for both men and women’s World Cups.
Most Finishes in the Top 2 of a Women’s World Cup (5)
Since 1991, there have been eight Women’s World Cups. The USWNT appeared in 5 of those. That USWNT stat is 62.5-percent of World Cup finals for these all-stars.
Most Finishes in the Top 3 or 4 of a Women’s World Cup (8)
Unsurprisingly from those who watch the USWNT, they play well in each World Cup tournament. However, it is still incredibly impressive that they walk away with a medal every time. The lowest finish from the USWNT is third-place. They’ve finished third three times, second once, and first three times. No World Cup team, men or women’s, can say they’ve finished third or above in every World Cup played. Astounding.
Best Goal Differential in Women’s World Cups (+100)
Taking all USWNT World Cup matches, they scored 100 more goals than conceded. The record for men and women is currently held by Brazil with a plus-124 goal differential. Granted, the Brazil men’s team played in 21 World Cup tournaments, 13 more than the USWNT women.
Again, the Brazilian men hold another record over the women. With 73 wins, the USWNT have a long way to go to top that. However, the USWNT average 1.5 wins more per tournament than the Brazilian men.
Most Tournaments Unbeaten in Women’s World Cup History (4)
With their victory on July 7th, this USWNT finished their fourth Women’s World Cup tournament unbeaten. So, in half of the Women’s World Cup tournaments, the U.S. women’s team walk out unbeaten. They are Goliaths.
Most Goals Scored in a World Cup Match (13) and Best Match Goal Differential (13)
Obviously, the USWNT got a solid head start with their record-breaking win against Thailand. Winning 13 to 0 is quite the performance. With their two goals in the 2019 Women’s World Cup Final, they passed the 1999 USWNT and the 2003 German women for most goals in a Women’s World Cup tournament. They were also just one goal shy of tying the 1954 Hungarian men for most goals, men or women. So close.
With their win against England, the USWNT launched themselves over the top of Norway’s ten-game win record. This UWSNT stat is also tied with the 2002-2006 Brazilian men’s teams with 11 consecutive wins. But, winning the 2019 Women’s World Cup Final broke the record for either men or women. Let’s go!
The Best USWNT Statistic We’ve Found
Top Selling Nike Soccer Jersey
Reported by Tom VanHaaren of ESPN, the USWNT’s stadium home jersey just took the top-spot, for men or women, of Nike.com sales in one season. Additionally, online jersey retailer Fanatics also reported sales growth of more than 500-percent for the USWNT when compared through the same semi-final period in 2015. They are the top-selling national soccer team, men or women.
So let’s recap these USWNT statistics and records. The U.S. team is the most decorated women’s soccer team in history. They hold records over both men and women in incredibly impressive statistics. Remember, they also hold the record for the most watched soccer game in United States history. And now they also set records for jersey sales. It’s impossible to ignore their talent, hard work and success.
With a USWNT vs Sweden Win, They Draw Spain and France
In today’s 2-0 USWNT vs Sweden victory, the US women opted to take the path of most resistance. There was a lot of discussion surrounding tournament schemes and deliberately throwing the match. Because of the 2019 World Cup draw, the USWNT will face Spain in the round of 16 and most likely France in the quarterfinals. Just this January, both Spain and France were difficult opponents for the USWNT. In the two friendlies, the USWNT lost 3-1 to France and won 1-0 against Spain. Neither of those signify ease. While Spain can prove admirable, France is the team with best advantages against the USWNT. Not only is France host nation of the World Cup, it is arguably the best (or second-best) team in the tournament. Compounding those is the fact that France consistently gives the USWNT trouble.
Recent France vs USWNT Results
The last time the USWNT beat France was in the 2016 SheBelieves Cup. Despite the victory, it was still only a 1-0 win and Hope Solo was in goal. Since then, France beat the USWNT 3-0 in the 2017 SheBelieves Cup, tied the USWNT 1-1 in the 2018 SheBelieves Cup and handily won 3-1 in a 2019 international friendly. Granted, Jill Ellis was experimenting during those years with different rosters and formations, but it doesn’t excuse the losses. France is a strong team with growing confidence and home-field advantage. That’s nothing to mess with.
The Path of 2012 Japan: Merit in Throwing a Match
With sports, merit and honor are always in question. Coaches and management are crucified for throwing games or seasons. But, doing so for positive results is worth considering. Rebuilding teams utilize their losing game-plan to trade away assets for picks, free up salary room, and acquire top picks in the draft. When teams commit to losing and rebuilding with analytical strategy, they experience resurgence. Just look at the Philadelphia Sixers or the Cleveland Browns. It’s unpopular during the escapade, but it works.
Like this, attempting to lose or tie to draw a better tournament schedule is also a valid strategy. In the 2012 Olympics, Japanese coach Norio Sasaki largely changed his lineup against a weaker South Africa team. Then, he told his players to not push for a winning goal. Because of this, his players avoided a five-hour drive to Glasgow for the next match. Ultimately, the Japanese women advanced to the final match. So, there are certainly advantages to giving your team the easiest path to victory. If Jill Ellis instructed the women to lose in the USWNT vs Sweden match today, it wouldn’t be uncalled for.
Losing for Strategy Wasn’t Not an Option for the USWNT vs Sweden
Despite any consideration fans and analysts give losing for tactical advantage, there was no way the USWNT would do this on purpose. Players and coach alike, there was a multitude of reasons against this strategy.
USWNT vs Sweden Revenge Game
First off, these women are proud athletes. The largest stain on their campaign is the 2016 USWNT vs Sweden loss in the Rio Olympics. This loss marked the end of Hope Solo’s career and catapulted the USWNT into uncertainty. Obviously, athletes love to win. But more importantly, athletes and fans feed on rivalries and pride. They don’t want anyone to second guess them.
“We want to freaking play France.” “Fingers crossed obviously. But at the end of the day it’s, like, mind-boggling that people would think we would actually want to lose a game going into the knockout rounds. We want to continue those winning vibes.”
“(Beating Sweden) is huge.” “It makes a huge impact on the world to see that we are not messing around, we are here to win. We are here to win every game, to score as many goals as we can to prove that we are the best team in the world. Each game is the biggest game of our lives. That’s how we are taking it [moving] forward.”
In today’s match against Sweden, the USWNT didn’t hesitate to score and erase that stain.
These Women are on Fire
Yes, there is a lot that Jill Ellis could do to stifle the USWNT. She controls the lineup, not the players. But, even if Jill Ellis wanted to stop the USWNT from scoring, this team is on fire. Stopping them, even with a different lineup, was an impossible challenge.
Against Thailand and Chile
65 Shots (30 on Target)
8 Different Goal Scorers
Alex Morgan scored 5 goals in a Single Match
Carli Lloyd Scored in 6 Consecutive World Cup Matches (2015 and 2019)
3 Shots Allowed (2 on Target)
75% Possession vs Thailand and 68% Possession vs Chile
Without a doubt, the USWNT is the team to beat right now. They broke records in their win against Thailand and didn’t tilt from the hate. Against Chile, even though they rested seven starters from the Thailand game, they still won handily. It gave Jill Ellis a chance to rest and test. Her stars got a break and her substitutes got playtime. Players like Carli Lloyd got to prove that they’ve got it and should be respected. Young and veteran alike, there were too many talented, scoring options for the USWNT vs Sweden.
The USWNT Doesn’t Show Fear
Last, everyone needs to remember that this team despises fear. For goodness sake, Hope Solo lost her job because she called the Swedish team “cowards” for sitting back and playing defensively. Think the USWNT players would throw the match and allow anyone to call them cowards? Not a chance.
Although many argued avoiding France early was the best strategy, it’s not in their playbook. Their best way to win this tournament is to never lose. Obviously. Just like NFL teams that go for it on fourth and two, the US women refuse to punt. Continuing to press into the attacking third and relentlessly strike the ball is the USWNT way. They are in incredible form right now, dangerous as ever. Relenting, even if it is for the “greater good” is not something they will or even can do.
“I don’t think we would even understand how to play that game.”
Winners. These USWNT athletes are winners, through and through. They aren’t afraid to take the difficult path to victory, even if that means taking on France in the quarterfinals or taking on U.S. Soccer in a pay-equity lawsuit. If the USWNT want to win this tournament, they have to keep the gas-pedal to the floor. This isn’t a defensive team, tactically or mentally. They’re out for blood and don’t care who the opponent is. Whether it’s the USWNT vs Sweden or Spain or France, they continue to press and attack. They are fearless, talented warriors, ready for another title.