United States beats Canada to win SheBelieves Cup


Jeff Kassouf reacts to USWNT's SheBelieves Cup win

Jeff Kassouf breaks down the USWNT's penalty shootout win vs. Canada to clinch the SheBelieves Cup and also previews the squad's future with Emma Hayes at the helm going forward.

Alyssa Naeher made three saves in the penalty shootout, and Emily Fox scored the winner in the seventh round of spot kicks as the United States beat Canada in the final of the SheBelieves Cup on Tuesday in Columbus, Ohio.

Following a 2-2 draw through 90 minutes, the U.S. won the shootout 5-4 with the help of Naeher, who dove to her right to deny Evelyne Viens and set the stage for Fox to win it.

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The United States captured the SheBelieves Cup championship for the fifth year in a row and has won the event for seven of the nine years of the competition.

Sophia Smith rallied the U.S. from a 1-0 deficit with goals in the 50th and 68th minutes to counter a 40th-minute goal by Adriana Leon. Canada tied it 2-2 in the 86th minute via a penalty kick by Leon after she drew a foul from Crystal Dunn.

The U.S. and Canada met in the semifinal of the Concacaf W Gold Cup on March 6 in San Diego with the U.S prevailing 3-1 on penalties following a 2-2 tie. Naeher was also one of the heroes of that victory.

USWNT players celebrate after beating Canada in a shootout in the SheBelieves Cup.
USWNT players celebrate after beating Canada in a shootout in the SheBelieves Cup.
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A team effort led to the Americans' goal that produced a 2-1 lead. The U.S. absorbed Canadian pressure, and Lindsey Horan started the counter. She passed to Jaedyn Shaw, who split the defense with a ball to Trinity Rodman on the left flank. Rodman threaded a pass ahead to Smith in stride as she broke behind the defense.

Earlier, Smith scored the equalizer with a shot to the lower left corner from just outside the box off a setup by Shaw.

Smith's goals came two years to the day since her hat trick against Uzbekistan in Columbus. She has 18 goals in 46 matches for the U.S.

Leon gave Canada the lead in the 40th minute. Naeher raced off her line to get the ball at the top of the box, but Canada's Deanne Rose beat her defender and collided with Naeher. Rose managed to pass to Leon at the penalty spot for the go-ahead strike.

This was the last match for interim U.S. coach Twila Kilgore before Emma Hayes, currently ending her coaching duties with England's Chelsea, assumes the head-coaching duties in May.

Kilgore had an 11-1-2 record during her time in charge of the U.S. women.