Holders USA will begin their journey for a three-peat against Vietnam in the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup on Saturday.
USA-W vs VIE-W Match Details
Date: Saturday, 22 July 2023
Time: 06:00 (IST) / 12:30 (NZST)
Venue: Eden Park, Auckland
USA-W vs VIE-W Match Preview
The USWNT claimed their fourth Women’s World Cup winning medal in 2019 and have now braced themselves to add another to that list. The hunt for their third consecutive title will be even more challenging for the holders as the competition from the rest of the places, particularly in Europe, is increasing. However, only a few have got the royalty and the mentality like the side who despite missing key figures from the winning squad like Abby Dahlkemper, Sam Mewis, Christen Press, Catarina Macario, Mallory Swanson and captain Becky Sauerbrunn, contain enough talent and quality to reward them with a silverware again. They will be motivated to give their retiring legend Megan Rapinoe the perfect send-off as well. While she will come off the bench to change games the upcoming stars like Sophia Smith will bring lethal scoring form from the club level to her debut Women’s World Cup. USA’s only worry will be themselves as they try to avoid their faith in the Olympics where they finished third and recent friendlies where they lost to European contenders for the title like Germany and England. Vlatko Andonovski’s side will be entering the 2023 Women’s World Cup with a nine-game winning haul and also no goals conceded this year. Taking on Vietnam in the opener of their group that also carries last edition’s finalists Netherlands and Portugal is only going for them to maintain their streak.
This will be a worry for the debutants as they well-know what happened to fellow Asian nation Thailand when they took the wrath of the undisputed queens in the competition in 2019. The Thailand team was smashed 13-0 in the heaviest-ever defeat in the finals and the Golden Stars will not want to experience the same. The problem for Mai Duc Chung’s side is that they suffered a 9-0 humiliation against Spain in the final friendly match. The result puts them on the back foot knowing the holders will be bringing an unmatched calibre on the pitch in the opener. Vietnam qualified for the 2023 Women’s World Cup by winning the playoff of the AFC Asian Cup 2023 third-placed teams in the group against Thailand and Chinese Taipei. They will be among the eight new teams making it to the tournament after an increase in participating nations to 32. Alongside the US, Vietnam will battle Netherlands and Portugal in a merciless group. Their main stand will be to limit the damage as they most certainly are going to finish at the bottom of the group. There is more to gain than lose in other aspects as they already made the nation proud and hope to use this Women’s World Cup experience to build on the progress of women’s football there.
USA-W vs VIE-W Predicted Lineups
USA-W: Alyssha Naeher; Emily Fox, Alana Cook, Naomi Girma, Crystal Dunn; Ashley Sanchez, Andi Sullivan, Lindsey Horan; Sophia Smith, Alex Morgan, Alyssa Thompson
VIE-W: Kim Thanh; Thu Thao, Thu Thuong, Diem My, Thi Thu, Thi Loan; Bich Thuy, Thanh Nha, Thi Van, Nhu; Hai Yen
USA-W vs VIE-W Dream11 Team Prediction
GK: Alyssa Naeher (7.5)
DEF: Fox (8.5), Thi Loan (8), Cook (7.5)
MID: Horan (8.5), Bich Thuy (8.5), Thi Van (8), Dunn (7)
FW: Smith (8), Nhu (8.5), Morgan (9)
Vice-captain: Sophia Smith
Captain: Alex Morgan
Sophia Smith has netted 10 goals in 13 NWSL matches in another stunning season for Portland Thorns. She already got 14 goals in 18 matches last season.
Alex Morgan has scored nine goals in her three Women’s World Cup appearance so far including sharing the Golden Boot with Rapinoe after scoring six goals in the last edition.