Women's World Cup semifinal, England 1 - 2 USA: England knocked out, USA through to fifth final

Follow live score and updates from the Women's World Cup semifinal match between England and USA in Lyon.

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USA has won its last 11 matches at the Women’s World Cup; the best winning streak in the tournament’s history.   -  Getty Images

Hello and welcome to Sportstar's live blog of the FIFA Women's World Cup semifinal match between England and USA.

I'm Lavanya and I am back to bring you all the updates from the Women's World Cup right here on Sportstar.

The game tonight is in Lyon, France's third largest city.

Home to French giants Olympique Lyonnais, the city got a much-needed break from an ongoing French heatwave thanks to some welcome morning showers. We aren't expecting any storms tonight, on the weather side of things at least.

 

LIVE:

That's it for tonight though.
USA goes into its third successive final and fifth overall. Who they will face will depend on the winner of the Netherlands vs Sweden semifinal. This has been an exhausting game though, emotionally of course. So if anything's coming (going) home, it's me to my bed. Need to get some rest before action resumes again in a few hours. Until then, goodbye and goodnight from me and all of us here at Sportstar!

It's not all over for the English women. The Lionesses will be back on Saturday to fight for a third place finish. They will play against Netherlands or Sweden, depending upon who loses tomorrow's semifinal.

What do you think of the VAR drama in this game? What do you think about the refereeing in this game? Let us know in the comments section or get in touch on social media. Find us at @Sportstarweb.

Phil Neville,
coach of the England team, has gracefully accepted defeat but points out the quality of refereeing in the game. "To be fair, I don't think the referee really patrolled the game," he said.

USA has won its last 11 matches at the Women’s World Cup; the best winning streak in the tournament’s history.

Alyssa Naeher is the first USA goalkeeper to save a penalty at the Women's World Cup.

The United States is through to the final after a 2-1 win over England. It took the lead in the 10th minute through Press when nodded past Telford. It only took England nine minutes to equalise through when White glanced Mead's ball off the far post and over the line. The US then regained the lead when Morgan fired her header into the back of the net. England thought they had equalised in the second half when White slotted her shot under Naeher but VAR ruled it out for offside. Houghton also had a penalty saved late in the game before Bright was sent off after receiving her second yellow card.

 

FT ENGLAND 1 - 2 UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

90'+5'
Parris is the latest player to receive a yellow card after a late challenge on Lloyd. Two minutes remain now. USA is playing this out. The girls are happy to let time pass.

England is getting impatient. It's showing. The sloppiness is something the girls can't afford that now. USA knows what happening and is happy to frustrate England further.

USA has played with five players in the back for a considerable part of this game. Not the usual American way but a challenging English attack has forced Ellis to make some changes. These have paid off, it seems.

Alyssa Naeher will go home a hero today if that save gives USA the game. Will it be? Anything can happen in seven minutes. A desperate England is still going for it. 

Seven additional minutes for England to equalise and get ahead. Can the Lionesses manage? Phil Neville is all emotion as he guides his girls through the US attack. Can they do it?

89' Substitution (ENG):  Georgia Stanway comes in for Rachel Daly.

87' Substitution (USA): Ali Krieger comes in for O'Hara.

86' BRIGHT IS SENT OFF!
She flies into the challenge on Morgan and her foot goes over the ball before catching the US captain. It's a frustrated challenge and she receives her second yellow of the game before being shown the red.

84'
It's a good strike by Houghton but there's not a lot of power on the low shot and if she had sent the keeper the wrong way then she probably would've equalised.

84' IT'S SAVED!
Parris has missed England's last two penalties so this time it's the captain Houghton that steps up. She looks calm as she takes her run up and aims it low towards the bottom corner, but Naeher goes the right way and makes the save. Still 2-1!

83' PENALTY TO ENGLAND! The referee spends a long time looking at the footage on the monitor and has now come back onto the field and pointed to the penalty spot.

Sauerbrunn gets a yellow card and ENGLAND GETS A PENALTY.

81'
VAR are having a look at a possible penalty for England. White was claiming that she was caught on the back of her foot by Sauerbrunn and the referee waved the claim away but she's not going to look at the monitor.

80' Ellis makes her second chance of the game now as she brings on Lloyd in place of Heath.

79' GREAT CHANCE FOR WHITE!
England finally strings a good run of passes together and Stokes squares the ball across the six-yard box. It's a sitter for White but she misses the cross and can't find the back of the net again.

78'
Heath is back on the field now after her treatment.

76'
Heath is just receiving some treatment, but it's not clear what the injury is. While the medical team are seeing to her, the rest of the players are using the opportunity for a water break due to the hot temperatures in Lyon.

75'
The US is taking its time with everything at the minute as it slows the pace of the game right down. Naeher has hold of the ball but isn't passing out from the back and Heath has just gone down on the halfway line much to the crowd's annoyance.

73'
England has gained some confidence after White's disallowed goal and it's pushing forward with more intent now. Its final pass into the box is still letting it down though.
 

RAPINOE UPDATE: Reports suggest Megan Rapinoe is nursing a strained hamstring. We are still awaiting confirmation from Ellis and co. We know the US is missing her services considering Rapinoe scored all four of America's goals in the knockouts.
 

53,512 people in the stadium right now.


71' subsitution: Moore comes in for Walsh (ENG).

69' OH HEARTBREAK FOR WHITE AND THE ENGLISH FANS. OFFSIDE!
VAR is having a look at the goal that White's just scored and after a fairly quick decision, it's disallowed for offside. One foot was offside when she received the ball and the crowd isn't happy with that decision. Still 2-1 to the US.

67' ENGLAND IS LEVEL AGAIN! OH WAIT. IS IT?
White is waiting in between the two defenders and Scott just touches the ball onto the forward. She latches onto it and takes a touch before slotting the effort under Naeher and into the back of the net.  A VAR check will follow.

Heartening to see Phil Neville give Lavelle a pat on the back. Good sportmanship this.

65'
Lavelle is down in her own half at the minute and she's holding onto her hamstring as the medical team come across to give her some treatment. It doesn't look like she'll be able to carry on and the US is preparing to make a substitution.  Mewis comes off the bench. First US substitution. Still no sign of Rapinoe.

61'
England just can't clear its lines to launch an attack for its side. All of its clearances have been played straight to the US and it's stuck deep in its own half.

59' MORGAN COMES CLOSE!
A poor pass out from Telford gives the ball straight to Morgan and she curls her shot towards the top corner from the edge of the box. Luckily for the goalkeeper, she can only send it wide of the far post.

58'
First change of the game is made by Neville as he brings on Kirby in place of Mead.

I just watched that Alex Morgan goal again and here's what I missed. She scored an easy header and immediately pretended to sip tea. Shade from Morgan there. We like that! No offense, Phil Neville.

100

Would you like some tea, England?   -  Getty Images



Oh before I forget, we have not seen any changes at halftime. The same sides have come back. Will Rapinoe get some game time? That is all people want to know at this point.

51' Scott and Ertz both go for the same loose ball and catch each other in the process. They're both down on the ground and look to be in pain, but they get back to their feet without needing any treatment.

Morgan's header is her sixth goal of the World Cup in France and put her back in the lead for the Golden Boot award, which is awarded to the player who scores the most goals in the tournament.



49' WHITE COMES CLOSE!
Mead whips a free-kick into the box from the right and Bright nods it back into the middle from the far post. White gets it and pokes it on target but Naeher holds it well. It would have been offside eitherway. No harm done. All smiles across the board here near the England goal.

47'
Horan receives an early yellow card in the second half after catching Bronze in the face with her elbow.

And we're back with the second half.

The English defense is troubling USA. This has been a great game as we're seeing the holders being tested to their full extent here by the Lionesses. Keira Walsh has been strong for England and the girls need to ensure she gets passed the ball more often.

What does the second half have for us? Will we see Rapinoe come on? Phil Neville's coming off a rollercoaster ride of the nerves. England started on the backfoot, took control and ended up on the backfoot again.  Who will score first in the second half? Stay with us to find out.

The first 45 minutes have been all about power tussles back and forth between the English and American women. USA leads England at 2-1 halftime. Press' opener gave USA the perfect start but a steady start soon fumbled a little when White found space to net an equaliser. It took England just nine minutes to equalise, but a Morgan header undid that lead, giving the defending champions a comfortable lead when the halftime whistle blew.

HT ENGLAND 1 - 2 UNITED STATES

Never in the history of the Women's World Cup has a team come from behind after halftime to win.


The crowd is now crooning 'England till I die...' Is it coming home, folks? Around 50 minutes to know for sure.

USA, about 10 minutes ago, was a perfect picture of discomfort. That Morgan goal really changed things around. England will now want that halftime whistle to go off as soon as possible.

42'
England has a free-kick just inside their own half and instead of going long, Houghton decides to play it sideways to Bright. She tries to play it forward to Mead but doesn't get the pass right to pick her out.

40'
Bright receives the first yellow card of the game after catching Morgan in the face with a trailing hand.

What is that Ellen White celebration?
Ever since I first saw that Ellen White celebration, I wondered what that was all about and here's what I found out. Her googles celebration has been inspired by Cologne striker Anthony Modeste who celebrates similarly. We see White is a Bundesliga fan.

Morgan has now been involved in nine goals at this World Cup (six goals, three assists), at least two more than anyone else.


We have spotted Megan Rapinoe. No news yet about why she's out. She is the only member of the squad to not attend the warmup. Is she injured? We are forced to think so. We're still waiting for an update on that front.

35'
England is struggling to track the ball as the US is moving it so quickly. Heath touches it onto Ertz, who turns before hitting her shot from the edge of the box. Her effort is too high though and it sails over the crossbar.

33' GREAT SAVE BY NAEHER!
Walsh finds herself in a forward position and strikes her shot well from outside the box. It's a great hit and Naeher has to get across her line quickly to claw the effort away.

Morgan has seemed happy and confident in this red kit, hasn't she? Maybe that's what kept her silent all along. We'll never know. England 1 - 2 USA

32' GOAAAAL and it's Alex Morgan this time.
She is the first player to score on her birthday. What a sweet record that is. Horan came in, making space from the elft. Morgan runs closer to the post and a simple header takes USA ahead. Crazy 30 minutes these have been.

29'
Oh that had mistakes written all over it.  Sauerbrunn nearly found the back of her own net. That would have been a terrible mistake. Inches away that one was, from finding its way into the net.

25' GREAT SAVE BY TELFORD!
The ball is bouncing around in the penalty area and it falls to Lavelle. She strikes the shot first time and Telford dives across her line to get a hand to it and palm it away.

Ellen White now has the most goals in this edition of the tournament.

21'
The US is trying to play out from the back, but England is closing it down high up the field now. Parris tried to win the ball back from Horan but ended up catching the player in the process and the US has a free-kick.

Let's take a minute and commend Houghton' captaincy. She rallied her side strongly after that Press opener. The confidence and faith has paid off.

Funnily enough, England has been the better of the two sides in terms of passes. It's showing. The girls have pegged one back for their side.

19' GOOOOAAAL. WHITE EQUALISES! It's England first real attack and it has found the back of the net! It's a brilliant cross into the six-yard box from Mead ahead of all the defenders and White just has to tap the ball past Naeher and over the line. 1-1!

12 - USA has opened the scoring within the opening 12 minutes in all six of its 2019 Women’s World Cup games. Now that's impressive.


Oh, talking about possession, here's a fun statistic about both these teams in that parameter.



12' England is keeping possession well following the restart and is slowing the pace of the game down a little so that it can get a feel for the ball and build-up from the back.

Fun fact:  Abby Dahlkemper is the only player to start in all five games USA has played so far. Everyone else has been rotated.

10' PRESS GIVES USA THE LEAD! A brilliant throughball from Heath picks out O'Hara's run down the right and she puts a deep cross into the box. Bronze doesn't see Press behind her and the forward rises to fire her header over Telford and into the back of the net. Not a header many goalkeepers can stop. That was neatly put away. 1-0 the US!

6' The US has a free-kick in a good position in midfield and Lavelle puts the cross into the box. Morgan gets in between England's central defenders but can't rise high enough to get on the end of it.

4' GREAT SAVE BY TELFORD! England doesn't clear their lines from a corner and the US keeps the pressure on. Lavelle dribbles past Bright to move into the box before she has a shot and the keeper palms the effort away.

2' Both teams are already pressing high up the field when they lose possession to try and force their opponents into making a mistake. The US have had the first attack, but Bronze stands tall to win the ball back.



USA has had a remarkable record of scoring quickly in this World Cup. Can it draw first blood today? It's not a meek opposition here.

1' Kickoff.
 

The US has lost just one of their last five matches against England (W3 D1), with the most recent encounter between the two countries ending 2-2 in the SheBelieves Cup in March.


Time for the national anthems.

Attendance: 60,000. WOW.

Here are the players I will be looking to during this game from the English lineup. What about you?



Not the Morgan you think: “Good luck. It’s been great to watch. I know a lot of the guys have followed it. It looks extremely hot out there (in France). But the very best of luck…” England cricket team's skipper Eoin Morgan said wishing the Lionesses ahead of the semifinal.
 

 

RAPINOE UPDATE: The USA star has been standing out with the team but not participating in the warm-ups.

Fran Kirby and Toni Duggan have been dropped today while Rachel Daly and Beth Mead start for the Lionesses. Goalkeeper Karen Bardsley is out, courtesy a hamstring injury which means Carly Telford comes in her place - this being just her second start at a major tournament.

That was one of two changes to USA's team, the other being the inclusion of Lindsey Horan for Sam Mewis in midfield.

Rapinoe comes off two back-to-back braces. Puzzling to not see her start today. Hopefully Jill Ellis has answers for us soon. For now, we will have to wait for the game to find out why.

It's 27 degrees in Lyon right now. Lot more merciful compared to the 40s and higher 30s we were observing over the past few days. Players will need to keep themselves hydrated to go through the length of this game.

Megan Rapinoe not starting comes as a surprise. She has been brilliant for the Americans in the last two games. England starts with its A team today - Houghton and Bright seem to have brushed away health concerns that came into play in the last game. Looks like a nicely set game today.

And lineups are out. Here's what the starting XIs look like.

England: Telford, Bronze, Houghton, Bright, Stokes, Walsh, Scott, Mead, Daly, Parris, White.

Subs: Bardsley, Greenwood, Taylor, Kirby, Duggan, Williamson, McManus, Moore, Stanway, Carney, Staniforth, Earps.

USA: Naeher, O’Hara, Dahlkemper, Sauerbrunn, Dunn, Horan, Ertz, Lavelle, Heath, Morgan, Press.

Subs: Harris, Pugh, Mewis, Brian, Lloyd, Krieger, Davidson, Sonnett, Rapinoe, Long, McDonald, Franch.

Referee: Edina Alves Batista (Brazil).


The Lionesses are not to be left behind. With a strong show in the group stages and a confident performance in the knockouts, it seems like the perfect fixture considering it is up against defending champion USA. 

Four years ago in Canada the Lionesses were one of the competition's surprise packages, beating Norway and the host in the knockout phase before being eliminated when Laura Bassett scored a stoppage-time own goal against Japan in the last four. The Lionesses are back though, with renewed purpose. How Neville's transformation led Lionesses back to World Cup semifinals

Controversies aside, we have a lovely game of football ahead of us tonight. Let's see how the teams are placed today. For the USA, it has been about a team effort this time around. Alex Morgan, Megan Rapinoe, Carli Lloyd, Lindsey Horan, Julie Ertz, Rose Lavelle and the others have all stepped up in turns to take the side through to the semifinals.  Here's a look at three standout players from the number one team in the world.

 

Oh before we forget, it's a big day today but it's also a special day for one of USA's best. Alex Morgan celebrates her 30th birthday today. Here's wishing her all luck ahead of the big night.

100

Happy Birthday, Alex Morgan



Controversy's favourite child -  USA

The buildup to this clash has been fierce. USA has practically walked into this tournament 'courting' controversy, literally! A total of 28 players from the United States women's national team filed a lawsuit in federal court in March seeking equal pay, accusing the governing body of "institutionalised gender discrimination, ultimately agreeing to mediate. Read more about this here.

The first few days of USA's world cup campaign was also filled with debate. US's goal celebrations in its 13-0 decimation of Thailand was torn apart on Twitter, with experts, former players, journalists and others all pitching in to have a say in the matter. Former USWNT player Hope Solo also felt the players went overboard in their celebrations. Read all about this here.

Soon enough, Megan Rapinoe decided to actively join the party when an old video of an interview to a US publication began doing the rounds on Twitter again. In it, the interviewer asked her if she'd like to go to the White House should the US win, to which she replied," Im not going to the f****** White House." The video went viral and in the span of two games, Rapinoe has earned praise and support for her stance, keeping in mind that she is a vocal LGBTQIA ambassador. Read all about this here.

Good evening, everyone! I cannot believe we're down to the business end of the tournament already. We have our first semifinal of the tournament ahead of us tonight, as USA takes on England in Lyon. The winner will progress to the final of the World Cup, where it will take on either Germany or Sweden, depending upon who wins tomorrow.

You will get to see the losing teams play again as they take each other for third place on July 06 (Saturday).