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THE United States won the Women’s World Cup for the fourth time after beating the Netherlands 2-0 this afternoon.
Forward Megan Rapinoe opened up the scoring for the US with a penalty in the 61st minute.
Referee Stephanie Frappart awarded the penalty after VAR showed defender Stefanie van der Gragt made a high challenge on striker Alex Morgan.
Rapinoe confidently struck the spot-kick down the middle and past a static Sari van Veenendaal, who seemed to anticipate Rapinoe would shoot to the side and was wrong-footed.
It was Rapinoe’s sixth goal, tying her with Morgan and England’s Ellen White at the top of the scoring charts.
Midfielder Rose Lavelle’s fine solo goal made it 2-0 in the 69th, as she powered to the edge of the penalty area and hit a low strike.
The midfielder collected the ball some 30 metres out, advanced to the penalty area and skipped past defender Stefanie van der Gragt before planting a low shot past goalkeeper Sari van Veenendaal.
She was mobbed as she dived into the arms of her teammates as she sprinted to the US bench to celebrate
The game was deadlocked at half time, mainly because of Dutch goalkeeper Sari van Veenendaal, who made three key stops.
US midfielder Julie Ertz saw her hooked shot saved in the 27th minute following a corner.
Van Veenendaal imposed herself again in the 38th, keeping out Morgan’s low shot from Rapinoe’s left-wing cross.
She denied Morgan again, this time with an even better save, low to her left to tip Morgan’s fizzing driver away for a corner.
The US has become the second team to win the competition twice in a row, matching the feat of 2003 and 2007 champions Germany.
Both US successes have been achieved under the management of Jill Ellis, who was born in England.
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