The U.S. women’s national team (USWNT) and the Netherlands will both be chasing history when they cross paths in the Women’s World Cup final on Sunday.
The Americans’ bid for an unprecedented fourth World Cup took a major step forward on Tuesday, when they defeated England 2-1 in the semifinals.
With captain Megan Rapinoe benched with a hamstring injury, the USWNT took a 2-1 lead in the first half courtesy of goals from Christen Press and Alex Morgan, either side of Ellen White’s equalizer.
Alyssa Naeher was the heroine late in the second half, saving England captain Steph Houghton’s penalty kick to earn her side a spot in the final for a third consecutive World Cup.
The U.S. should have Rapinoe back in time for the final in Lyon on Sunday, with the captain confirming her hamstring strain was nothing too severe.
“It just wasn’t going to be ready for today,” she told ESPN after the game against England.
“But it’s feeling much better today and I plan to be ready for the final.”
The Netherlands, meanwhile, arrive into their first World Cup final after beating Sweden 1-0 in extra time on Wednesday thanks to a goal from Jackie Groenen.
The European champions have conceded just three goals in the tournament so far—and only one of those came in the knockout stage. If their defense is hard to break down, in Lieke Martens and Vivianne Miedema they have the caliber of players capable of winning any game.
The former has struggled with a toe injury since the win over Japan in the round of 16, but should be available for the final.
“We never knew this would be possible,” Groenen said in a post-match press conference. “One more match and we might possibly be the world champions. It will be difficult, but it really would be incredible to win.”
Here’s everything you need to know ahead of Sunday.
When and where is the game?
The USWNT faces the Netherlands at Parc Olympique Lyonnais in Lyon on Sunday, July 7, with kick-off scheduled for 5 p.m. local time (11 a.m. ET).
The home of French club side Olympique Lyon, the stadium was a host venue at UEFA Euro 2016 and staged last year’s Europa League final. It hosted both semifinals earlier this week.
The game will be broadcast live on FOX Sports in English and on Telemundo in Spanish.
USWNT’s clash against the Netherlands will be available on FOX Sports’ and Telemundo Deportes’ digital platforms. Live streams will also be available on fuboTV, Sling Blue, Hulu Live and PlayStation Vue.
World Cup finals are traditionally hard to predict but the bookmakers have USWNT as the clear favorite to lift the trophy at 2/9, while the Netherlands is a 3/1 outsider.
Since the tournament’s inception in 1991, three of the seven World Cup finals played have gone onto extra time and two of them have been decided by a penalty shootout. Incidentally, both of them involved the U.S. but bookmakers expect the defending champions to get the job done in 90 minutes on Sunday.
According to Oddschecker, USWNT is a 4/9 favorite to win in regulation, while the Netherlands is a 7/1 outsider and the draw is at 3/1.