Women's World Cup final FT USA 2 - 0 Netherlands: Fourth title for USA, Rapinoe wins Golden Boot and Golden Ball

Follow live score and updates from the Women's World Cup final between USA and Netherlands in Lyon.

USA

Best in the world | USA wins fourth Women's World Cup title, beats Netherlands 2-0 in Lyon.   -  Getty Images

Hello and welcome to Sportstar's live blog of the FIFA Women's World Cup final between USA and Netherlands in Lyon, France.

I'm Lavanya and I am going to bring you updates from the biggest and, sadly, last game of the Women's World Cup.

It's match number 52 and the biggest one yet. A title defence and a pursuit for a maiden title will unfold in a few hours at Parc Olympique Lyonnais.

From Megan Rapinoe and Lieke Martens' injury update, to the race for the Golden Boot, we have all the updates here so stay with us through the game.



LIVE:


And that ends a month-long celebration of some brilliant football from around the world. That 13-0 win should have been warning enough for all the others in this tournament but the fact that USA did not have it easy AT ALL not even in this game tells you so much about how far the women's game has come. This brings us to the end of our time. It was a pleasure bringing this game LIVE to you every night. Until next time, it's goodbye from all of us at Sportstar!

Presentation ceremony now and here are the awards:

The Fair Play award goes to France. The host nation was knocked out in the quarterfinal, losing to champion USA.

Bronze Boot
to England's Ellen White.

Silver Boot
to Alex Morgan - for six goals and three assists.

Goden Boot to star of the game - Megan Rapinoe - for the same goals and assists but fewer minutes played.

Golden Glove to Netherlands' Sari van Veenandaal for her incredible performance throughout this tournament.

Bronze Ball
goes to USA's Rose Lavelle for her performances in this tournament.

Silver Ball goes to England's Lucy Bronze.

Golden Ball
goes to, no surprises there, MEGAN RAPINOE.


Right, so for those of you joining us for a quick peek now: Let me get you up to speed.

USA beat Netherlands 2 - 0, courtesy a penalty strike from Megan Rapinoe and a 69th-minute goal from Rose Lavelle.
This is its fourth World title in the history of the tournament and its second consecutive title after the 5-2 win over Japan in 2015.

What a journey this has been. An eventful month comes to an end with the best in the world taking what it perhaps rightfully deserves. Netherlands should take home the positive at the end of this game. Sari van Veenandaal was extraordinary, despite being breached twice. Hers is a performance Lyon and the millions watching around the world will not forget. 

So many records. Jill Ellis becomes the first coach to win two World Cup titles.

USA becomes the second country after Germany to defend its title. This is its fourth title overall.
 

FT USA 2 - 0 NETHERLANDS


And there goes the whistle. USA defends its title!

Five minutes of added time. Three minutes separate the USA from clinching its fourth world title and second consecutive World Cup final win.

Have you heard the Dua Lipa track called Swan Song? That would make for a perfect background score to these girls lifting the trophy in a few minutes, if things stay the same. For anyone wondering where they've heard this from, it featured in the dystopian film - Alita.

When you come in with under 10 minutes of play left, all you'd want to do is score. That's exactly what Lloyd is looking to do here. She last scored against Chile. Will this be the perfect swan song for her?

That odd dribble has a consequence. Heath comes off. Lloyd takes her place.

85' PENALTY SHOUT!
Heath split two defenders and then charged into the box where she went down, but the referee views it as a dive and awards a free-kick to Netherlands!

84'
After an odd sequence of events that saw Heath dribbling in the Dutch penalty area with very little pressure, the ball is eventually played to Press who tries a curling effort that's easily stopped by van Veenendaal.

82'
Van de Sanden pulls down Mewis and USA will have a free-kick in its own half.

Michelle Obama is rallying behind the girls in the stars and stripes. That's some elite cheerleading arsenal there, USWNT. 

GOLDEN BOOT UPDATE:
As it stands, Megan Rapinoe is poised to take home the Golden Boot. She has six goals and three assists to her name in fewer minutes than compatriot Alex Morgan.

80' CHANCE!
Spitse takes a free-kick with plenty of movement that forced a dive from Naeher but drifted just left of goal! That was close!

79'
Press comes onto the pitch as Rapinoe, who scored the first goal, receives a hearty ovation from the United States' support. Alex Morgan takes over the captain's armband. Will she also take the lead in the Golden Boot contest? She has a minimum of nine minutes to get ahead.

ATTENDANCE: 57,900

73' Dekker out. Van de Sanden comes on.
She brings in not just pace but a burst of energy too. The Dutch women need that here more than anything else. 13 minutes remain to figure a way to equalise. Netherlands needs to try.

72'
Veenendaal has saved two efforts from Morgan and Heath in the last seven minutes.

69' GOOOALLLLL!!!!! THE UNITED STATES DOUBLES ITS LEAD!
On a counter-attack, Lavelle dribbled through the midfield, set up a left-footed shot, and hammered it into the bottom-right corner of goal! What a terrific individual effort from Lavelle! United States 2-0 Netherlands

65'
Miedema goes on an incisive run into the opposing penalty area, but she takes a few too many touches and is closed down by the defence. She looked a bit goal-shy there.



Jill Roord and Shanice van de Sanden can be seen warming up. The Dutch need an equaliser and fast.

That goal was the 25th of the tournament for USA, the most ever by a nation in a single edition of this competition!


An hour it has taken for USA to find the net and a controversial penalty was involved. I am going to quickly scan Twitter now. The Dutch disappointment was very audible in Lyon and the web is going to be no different. Do you think that penalty call was fair?

61' GOOALLLL!!!! THE UNITED STATES OPEN THE SCORING! Rapinoe stepped up from the spot and slotted it past van Veenendaal, who never moved, into the bottom-right corner of goal! Is this going to be the difference? Is this the goal that will help USA defend its title? We will know in 30 minutes.

60'
With the penalty now called, van der Gragt is shown yellow for a high boot.

60' PENALTY!
After checking the monitor, the referee runs back onto the pitch and points to the spot! USA will have a chance to open the scoring!

59' PENALTY SHOUT!
There a high boot in the penalty area that makes contact with Morgan who then goes to ground... and this one will be reviewed by VAR! My oh my.

54'
Play halts as Sauerbrunn is down on the pitch with blood trickling down her face. That was a horrid collision with van de Donk. She is getting bandaged at the touchline as I write this update.

52'
Dunn tries her luck from range, but her effort was always headed wide of goal and failed to trouble van Veenendaal.

51'
Krieger drags down Bloodworth and the former is called for the foul.

It's a historic day for the Dutch, not just because of this final but because today also marks the anniversary of another final the Dutch were part of.



It's also been an intensely physical game of football so far. The tackles have come by the minute. Nothing so far since the second half began but we can expect more, especially if this Dutch defence continues.

46'
O'Hara, after her head injury at the end of the first half, is replaced by Ali Krieger heading into the second.

The halftime break is a break in momentum. Will USA cave and tire out or will it manage to breach the Dutch defence and find the net?

Before the second half resumes, let's take a look and what we can expect to see in the second half.

Danielle Van de Donk made a cheeky remark when journalists asked her about Alex Morgan. Looks like the Dutch meant business.

 


It seems like the USA has met its match. Netherlands has not allowed the defending champions to have their way in this game. Yes, Rapinoe and Co. have dominated possession and have had more shots at the goal than their Dutch counterparts but Netherlands has done well to defend the way it has. USA has been deprived of a goal not just in the first 12 minutes of the game but in the entire first half.

Whistle blows. HT USA 0 - 0 NETHERLANDS

45+1'
Two minutes of time added to this half. O'Hara and Martens collide and were down for a while there. Worrying. The girls get a drinks break in the process and both players are helped up. Kelly O'Hara looks like she got the harder side of that collission. No harm done. The medics have done their job and are on the way out of the field.

42 ' Abby Dahlkemper gets a yellow card.
She has brought down Beerensteyn. Not happy about the card, the Dutch get a free kick. Spitse to take the kick.

41' WHAT A SAVE. Brilliant goalkeeping from Veenendaal. Morgan strikes but the keeper dives low to her left to manage a smart save. This area has always troubled the Dutch and Veenendaal has done well to collect. She is being tested time and again here.

39' TWO SAVES FROM NETHERLANDS. Veenendaal blocks a two-pronged attack there from Alex Morgan and Sam Mewis to keep the scoreline static. Heart in the mouth for the Dutch supporters. How does one sit down in games like this?

37' PENALTY SHOUT! Morgan goes down in the box under pressure from Bloodworth but the referee sees nothing wrong with it and awards a USA corner instead! Morgan protests and then walks away smiling. The crowd is divided, the US supporters chanting 'penalty', the Dutch supporters yelling "dive."

34' The United States has the early advantage in possession having held the ball for 61.1 per cent of this match thus far. Quick thinking from Netherlands as it moves to a 4-2-3-1 formation now. Miedema is playing very deep in this formation.

Neither side has been behind in a match at the FIFA Women's World Cup France 2019 so far. Talk about firsts.


That volley from Ertz was the first shot on target for the USA. Says so much about how well the Dutch have done to fend off the Americans.

28' Lovely save by Veenendahl.
Rapinoe takes the corner and gets it straight to Ertz. She volleys it right at the goal but captain Sari van Veenendaal is not having any of it. Saved. A big sigh is making its way across the USA side of the stands.

24'
Miedema dangerously approached the goal here but Alyssa Naeher is quick to come on in front and kick the ball away. Averted. Miedema can be cheeky in such spacious conditions. Quick and smartfrom Naeher.

23'
Dunn sends a cross to Mewis in the box, but van Veenendaal is wise to it and plucks the ball out of the air without too much trouble.

Jill Ellis is up on her feet, giving the girls instructions from the touchline. Wiegman is still at her seat. There's a Godfather-feel to how she's operating here today. Can she have the last laugh?

Alex Morgan has been quiet all through the opening 23 minutes of the game. Van de Gragt and Dekker have marked here in turns right from the start and she has no space to try and create something here for the Americans.

18'
Rapinoe is shrugged off the ball in the final third and she appeals to the referee for a foul, but the latter is having none of it. It was Dekker here on the other end.

Good start from Netherlands to keep the USA at bay in the first 12 minutes. This is the first time USA has failed to score in the first 12 in this edition of the tournament. Good job, Oranje.

10' FIRST YELLOW CARD
and Sherida Spitse is not happy. Free kick to the US. Tobin Heath will take this. It has been safely put away. Spitse went right through Lavelle's legs and the referee was quick to pull out the card.

Netherlands has prioritised marking Alex Morgan.

The midfield seems to be a dull place to be at the moment. USA is trying to pro actively breach that Netherlands' defense.

5'
After a driving run by Martens down the left channel, the ball is eventually lofted to Beerensteyn who couldn't control it and USA pushes upfield.

3'
Dunn tries to slip Rapinoe into the box but the pass is cut out by the Dutch and cleared. USA already has no issues getting forward.

If you have watched the 2015 World Cup final, you will know the carnage USA is capable of causing. USA went up 4-0 in the first 16 minutes against Japan, a final it went on to win 5-2. Are we in for a landslide today? Netherlands surely doesn't think so.

All eyes are going to be on a possibility of an early goal from USA tonight. The defending champion has never lost a game it has scored first in.

1' Referee Stephanie Frappart blows her whistle, and the Women’s World Cup final is underway!

Carla Overbeck, two-time World Cup winner for the USA in 1991 and 1999
presented the World Cup trophy earlier. She has been an inspiration for the girls playing today and will hope the cup comes home with her. Netherlands will try all it can to ensure that doesn't happen. The girls have their King watching them and cheering them on in Lyon.

And we're moments away from the final of the eighth FIFA Women's World Cup.

The flags are out. This stadium is a delight to watch. We have the best supporters of the lot here at Stade de Lyon. The Dutch are a passionate lot and we know USA is capable of creating a home game atmosphere wherever the fans go. It's going to be a battle of decibels as much as it is about the goals tonight.

Netherlands is the eighth nation to grace this finals. USA is the only team to have graced so many finals in the history of the tournament.

One of the most important statistics I will be looking out for is this: USA has scored in the first 12 minutes of every game in this edition of the tournament. One of the strategies discussed ahead by fans and pundits everywhere has been that Netherlands needs to find a way to stall that early goal. Can the Dutch manage to do that?

Both these teams are unbeaten in the tournament so far, so this game will also be a break in that winning streak for th runner up.

And the trophy is out. That is what tonight will be all about. Who will take it home?

This is a crucial game for a number of reasons and it seems to be all about the numbers as far as this big final is concerned. Here's everything you need to know about tonight's big game.

15 MINUTES REMAIN FOR PROCEEDINGS TO BEGIN. Megan Rapinoe will don the captain's armband today. National anthems in a few minutes.

One name I am surprised to see missing in the starting XI is Shanice van de Sanden. She has been patchy but was extremely effective for the Dutch in the semifinal. Her energy and that one run across the field that was just all raw pace shows you what she brings to the table. Her energy and aggression helped keep the Swedes at bay.

ICYMI: The match for third place in the Women's World Cup was held yesterday at Nice and saw England and Sweden lock horns for bronze. Sweden pulled off a spirited win over the Lionesses yesterday to make its way to the podium. VAR denied England's Ellen White thereby also taking away a possible chance to lead the Golden Boot race. Read all about the England vs Sweden game here.

Phil Neville didn't seem to be a big fan of the third-place playoff, calling it a nonsense game at the post-match interaction. Here is what the England manager said.

Megan Rapinoe, USA co-captain and forward, is back starting for the defending champion today. She skipped the game against England with a strained hamstring but was confident of making it back to the starting XI. There's no better stage to come back than the final of the tournament. Rapinoe has been clinical in securing wins for the Americans, specially in the knockout games. Her return is a shot in the arm for the title holders.

Lieke Martens hurt her toe while celebrating her goal against Japan and it has been troubling her ever since. She came back for the semifinal against Sweden but was called off midway after it continued to cause her discomfort. It now looks like she has had more time to give her foot some rest. She has been important in the final third for the Dutch and they will be glad to have her back in the lineup today.

It's a big game today. Four weeks have gone by sooner than we thought and in a few hours,  we will have our 2019 World Cup winner. Before that, there's much to discuss.

Let's get straight to it - the race for the Golden Boot. Who will get there? It's a two-filly race at the moment, with Alex Morgan (USA) and Ellen White (Eng) both tied on top of the goalscorers table with six goals each. Megan Rapinoe is not far behind with five goals and going by her talents in those penalty kicks, Morgan wont win it easy.
 

LINEUPS

United States (4-3-3): Alyssa Naeher; Kelley O’Hara, Abby Dahlkemper, Becky Sauerbrunn, Crystal Dunn; Rose Lavelle, Julie Ertz, Samantha Mewis; Tobin Heath, Alex Morgan, Megan Rapinoe.

Netherlands (4-3-3): Sari van Veenendaal; Desiree van Lunteren, Stefanie van der Gragt, Dominique Bloodworth, Anouk Dekker; Jackie Groenen, Sherida Spitse, Danielle van de Donk; Lineth Beerensteyn, Vivianne Miedema, Lieke Martens.


Welcome back everyone!
It's time for the final and what better news to begin with than a positive injury update! Lieke Martens and Megan Rapinoe are fit to play today and will start for their respective sides.


Road to the final:

USA

Group Stage:

USA 13 - 0 Thailand

Chile 0 - 3 USA

USA 2- 0 Sweden

Round of 16:

USA 2 - 1 Spain

Quarterfinal:

France 1 - 2 USA

Semifinal:

USA 2 - 1 England

Netherlands

Group Stage:

New Zealand 0 - 1 Netherlands

Netherlands 3 - 1 Cameroon

Netherlands 2 - 1 Canada

Round of 16:

Netherlands 2 - 1 Japan

Quarterfinal:

Italy 0 - 2 Netherlands

Semifinal:

Netherlands 1 - 0 Sweden (aet)