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USA vs Japan women’s soccer live score, updates, highlights from USWNT in SheBelieves Cup

USA vs Japan women’s soccer live score, updates, highlights from USWNT in SheBelieves Cup

As this summer’s Women’s World Cup increasingly comes into focus, the U.S. women’s national team turns its attention to 11th-ranked Japan in their second match of the 2023 SheBelieves Cup.

The No. 1 USWNT topped Canada 2-0 in their first match of the winter competition back on Thursday, in a surprisingly dominant victory over a northern rival that has been a thorn in the side for the Americans in the recent past. But the U.S. brushed Les Rouges aside in a statement performance that flashed their intent ahead an unprecedented three-peat attempt this summer.

Mallory Swanson was brilliant in the first half, scoring both goals and coming close to a hat-trick on numerous occasions. Her exceptional showing came as striker Alex Morgan was honored pre-match for surpassing 200 international caps in her career.

While Canada always looks to beat the U.S. at its own game of top-level football, Japan will provide a different challenge, as the Asian side is a strong possession team with a technically gifted squad. They were beaten 1-0 by Brazil in their opener four days ago, with a 72nd minute goal proving the difference after Japan were dominant in possession, but failed to capitalize in front of net.

The Sporting News will be following the USA vs Japan match live and providing score updates, commentary and highlights as they happen.

MORE: Look back at the 2-0 USWNT win over Canada in the SheBelieves Cup opener

USA vs Japan live score

 1H 2H Score


Confirmed lineups:

USA (4-3-3, right to left): 18. Murphy (GK) — 8. Huerta, 3. Cook, 12. Girma, 23. Fox — 2. Sanchez, 22. K. Mewis, 10. Horan — 6. L. Williams, 13. Morgan, 9. Swanson.

Japan (5-4-1, right to left): Tanaka (GK) — Shimizu, Miyake, Kumagai, Minami, Sugita — Fujino, Hasegawa, Nagano, Miyazawa — Ueki.

USWNT vs Japan live updates, highlights, commentary

60 mins to kick: Lineups are in, and there’s some serious rotation from Vlatko Andonovski and the United States against the weakest team in the SheBelieves Cup field (by FIFA ranking). Casey Murphy takes over in goal, given a chance to spell Alyssa Naeher, while Sofia Huerta, Naomi Girma, Lynn Williams, and Kristie Mewis all enter the starting lineup. Lindsey Horan wears the captain’s armband. Rose Lavelle still isn’t fit to start, which is a concern.

80 mins to kick: One intriguing storyline from this SheBelieves Cup that hasn’t gotten a ton of attention is the full-back deployment for Vlatko Andonovski. Crystal Dunn’s return from her pregnancy has had a ripple effect on a few individuals, starting with herself. Dunn played 45 minutes against Canada at left-back, as she works her way back to full match fitness, but she isn’t keen on playing that position long-term.

“I step into [national team] camp, and I feel like I lose a part of myself,” Dunn said in an interview with GQ Magazine. “I no longer get to be Crystal who scores goals, assists, is this attacking player. I step into an environment where I have to be world-class in a position that I don’t think is my best position.”

That’s a strong statement, and she later called switching positions between club and country a “massive burden.” Her use at left-back has also forced Emily Fox to move from her natural position to the opposite flank. The 24-year-old is not one of the more flashy USWNT players, but has been a steady and reliable presence in her 25 international caps and profiles as an ever-present mainstay in the team for years to come. Andonovski has a big decision to make regarding the future of the full-back positions, and navigating that will be a defining part of the long-term health of this national team program.

Last year, @Cdunn19 returned to play months after giving birth—and scored an all-time season-saving goal. Now, the @USWNT star is gearing up to win a second World Cup: https://t.co/MaA6hJecgG pic.twitter.com/oQxWw7eYaY

— GQ Sports (@GQSports) February 17, 2023

95 mins to kick: Today’s opponent, Japan, still brings back painful memories dating back to the 2011 Women’s World Cup final, where the U.S. lost to Japan in a penalty shootout. Since that, the U.S. have more than vindicated those demons, winning the World Cup title twice, and in a more immediately relevant aspect, going 11 matches unbeaten against Japan. On the flip side, Japan have slipped from that mantle since their only World Cup championship.

11 – The @USWNT is unbeaten in 11 matches against Japan since losing the 2011 World Cup Final on penalties (W7 D4), including wins in the 2012 Olympic and 2015 World Cup Finals. Redemption. pic.twitter.com/Cr2YNZ6CEs

— OptaJack⚽️ (@OptaJack) February 19, 2023

107 mins to kick: The SheBelieves Cup, established in 2015, is a tournament meant to highlight the achievements of women on and off the field. “Inspired by the U.S. Women’s National Team, SheBelieves is a movement to encourage young women and girls to reach their dreams, athletic or otherwise,” reads the competition’s official website.

Ahead of the 2023 Women’s World Cup, where the USWNT are aiming for an unprecedented three-peat, the idea of “belief” has taken center stage, both this winter and moving forward. Props to TNT for an exceptional bit of production around the team’s focus on belief!

— highlightHER (@HighlightHER) February 19, 2023

120 mins to kick: The USWNT showed their depth against Canada, after questions that the team lacked it. The team performed at a high level against Canada, especially considering the absence of Rose Lavelle, while Naomi Girma missed out and was replaced brilliantly by veteran Becky Sauerbrunn.

The biggest question now will be whether those two can return from their injuries picked up in training during the run-up to the Canada match. They both trained yesterday, but manager Vlatko Andonovski was clear that he would play it safe with both players.

Vlatko Andonovski says both Rose Lavelle and Naomi Girma will train today but if there s “any risk” of injury against Japan they won’t play. #uswnt

— Jeff Carlisle (@JeffreyCarlisle) February 18, 2023

USWNT vs Japan lineups

Both Rose Lavelle and Naomi Girma missed out on the opener against Canada with slight injuries picked up in training, and Vlatko Andonovski claimed that if there’s “any risk of injury” they would be held out. That comes to fruition partly, as Girma makes the lineup but Lavelle remains sidelined.

There’s lots of rotation today for Andonovski against Japan. Mallory Swanson and Trinity Rodman were both exceptional against Canada, but Rodman is sent to the bench in favor of Lynn Williams, with Sophia Smith out of the competition due to injury.

Sophie Huerta enters the fray at full-back, with Crystal Dunn sent to the bench as she works slowly back to match fitness. Kristie Mewis is into midfield, while Andi Sullivan drops out.

USA confirmed starting lineup (4-3-3): Murphy (GK) — Huerta, Cook, Girma, Fox — Sanchez, Mewis, Horan — L. Williams, Morgan, Swanson.

USA subs (12): Naeher (GK), Franch (GK), Sauerbrunn, Sonnett, Dunn, Sullivan, Kornieck, Lavelle, Purce, Rapinoe, Rodman, Hatch.

MORE: Mallory Swanson, formerly Pugh, is growing into an undroppable player for USWNT

— U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team (@USWNT) February 19, 2023

Japan have struggled to score of late against top international sides, shut out in three straight matches against Brazil, Spain, and England. Although 23-year-old Riko Ueki started at striker against Brazil, it’s possible that veteran Mana Iwabuchi returns to the lineup, with the Tottenham forward’s 85 caps and 37 goals providing much-needed experience to the attack. Japan are missing veteran Mina Tanaka who has not yet featured for club or country in 2023.

Japan projected starting lineup (5-4-1): Tanaka (GK) — Shimizu, Miyake, Kumagai, Minami, Sugita — Fujino, Hasegawa, Nagano, Miyazawa — Ueki.

Japan subs (11): (Lineups released one hour prior to kickoff)

How to watch USA vs Japan

  • Date: Sunday, February 19
  • Time: 3:30 p.m. ET
  • TV channel (English): TNT
  • Streaming (English): fuboTV, HBO Max
  • TV channel (Spanish): Universo
  • Streaming (Spanish): fuboTV, Peacock

 MORE: SheBelieves Cup 2023 fixtures, results and highlights

This USWNT match in the SheBelieves Cup will be shown on TNT in English. Turner Sports, who signed a eight-year broadcast deal with U.S. Soccer for both men’s and women’s broadcasts, has decided to put this match on television, after the opener of the competition was only shown exclusively on HBO Max. That means the broadcast is available for streaming on fuboTV, with HBO Max also an option.

There is a Spanish-language broadcast available on Universo, which can also be streamed on fuboTV. The match can be found in Spanish on NBC’s subscription-based streaming service Peacock. 

USWNT vs Japan betting odds

The United States, as the No. 1 ranked team in the FIFA standings, are understandably heavy favorites in this match, but not as heavy favorites as they’ve been against sides inferior to the No. 11-ranked Japanese.

USA win-300
Japan win+675
Both teams
to score Y / N
+100 / -140
Over / Under
2.5 goals
-155 / +110

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