With an amazing 5-2 victory over Japan, Team U.S.A has won the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup at Vancouver’s BC Place. At 4pm local time on Sunday July 5th, a largely pro-U.S.A crowd of 53,341 watched on as the United States dominated Japan in the Women’s World Cup Final.
And dominate they did, right from the start as the U.S.’s Carli Lloyd scored a hat-trick, and stole the game within the first sixteen minutes. Awarded the Golden Ball, signifying she was the best player in the World Cup, Lloyd scored the first goal after shaking off a Japan defender just three minutes into the game.
Two minutes later Lloyd hit the net again after a low free-kick from Lauren Holiday found its way through a sea of U.S and Japan players to Lloyd who sent it home, giving the U.S a 2-0 lead. As FIFA.com states, just five minutes into the game and Lloyd had found herself scoring the two fastest goals in Women’s World Cup Final history.
Fourteen minutes into the game Holiday scored the third goal for Team U.S.A after volleying in a loose ball. However Holiday’s goal was shortly overshadowed when just two minutes later Lloyd scored her third and hat-trick signifying goal for the United States.
But what really stole the show was not only the fact that it was Lloyd’s third goal in less than sixteen minutes of the game, but the fact that she shot the ball from just inside the Japanese half and got it into the net. As FIFA.com describes, “Lloyd unleashed a high shot from the halfway line over the head of Japan goalie Ayumi Kaihori, whose desperate back-peddling only resulted in finger-tipping the ball onto the inside of the post and into the net”.
Down 4-0, Japan managed to get on the board with a much needed goal by Yuki Ogimi in the twenty-seventh minute of the first half.
The second half of the Women’s World Cup Final seemed to be a more balanced battle. The U.S got their 5th and game winning goal when Tobin Heath scored at close range from a Morgan Brian assist. But that didn’t stop Japan from trying as they managed a second goal in the fifty-second minute. The second half was also met with some of the loudest roars of the day, when Team U.S veterans Abby Wambach and Christie Rampone were subbed into the game.
This is the first World Cup win for the U.S in sixteen years, as they last took home the cup in 1999, Rampone a part of that victory. It is also viewed by some as redemption for the U.S, who lost the 2011 Women’s World Cup to Japan in a penalty kick shootout.
Along with the Golden Ball, Lloyd was also awarded the Silver Boot, and Team U.S.A goalie Hope Solo won the Golden Glove for keeper of the tournament.
After award and medal presentations the World Cup trophy was brought out, and Team U.S.A veterans Wambach and Rampone lifted the trophy to a cheering crowd, signifying their victory as the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup champions.