U.S. women open SheBelieves Cup with win over England
Christen Press and Carli Lloyd scored in the second half to give the United States a 2-0 victory over England in the SheBelieves Cup on Thursday night.
Alyssa Naeher made three saves to keep England scoreless and extend the top-ranked Americans’ unbeaten streak to 29 games.
Spain beat Japan 3-1 earlier Thursday at Orlando’s Exploria Stadium to open the tournament. The winner of the four-team round-robin tournament is determined on points.
The two teams were scoreless in the first half. The World Cup champion U.S. team applied pressure but England goalkeeper Carly Telford kept the Americans from finding the back of the net.
Press’ curling shot from distance into the upper right corner put the United State up in the 53rd minute. A few moments later, Lloyd added another.
Press has scored eight goals in the last eight matches. She had five goals in the recent CONCACAF Olympic qualifying tournament and was named the event’s MVP.
It was the 123rd career goal for Lloyd, who led the team in scoring last year with 16 goals.
Julie Ertz came close to scoring in the 78th minute but the United States was offside. Ertz was making her 100th appearance with the national team, becoming the 40th national team player to reach the milestone.
The game was a rematch of the World Cup semifinal last summer in France. The United States held on for the 2-1 win after Naeher smothered Steph Houghton’s penalty kick in the 84th minute.
Spain, ranked No. 13 in the world, plays the United States on Sunday when the tournament shifts to Red Bull Arena in New Jersey. No. 10 Japan will face sixth-ranked England in the other match.
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