German and US Women’s National Teams Shine at the FIFA Women’s World Cup

July 8, 2019

© Brooke Pavel Photography

This summer, soccer fans all over the world are coming together in stadiums and in front of televisions to watch their favorite teams play the world’s most popular sport. Last month’s Women’s World Cup was one of the highlights of this summer’s competitive schedule and featured strong performances by both the German Frauen-Nationalmannschaft and the newly-crowned champion US Women’s National team.

The USWNT and Frauen-Nationalmannschaft both advanced out of the Group stage with perfect 3-0 records, before Germany was eliminated from the tournament in a hard-fought game against Sweden. The US advanced to the final, where they beat the Netherlands with two second-half goals to win their second consecutive World Cup championship, and their fourth overall.

USWNT captain Megan Rapinoe won the Golden Ball, awarded to the competition’s best overall player, as well as the Golden Boot, which is awarded to the leading goalscorer of the tournament. Her teammate and co-captain Alex Morgan was awarded the Silver Boot, as the second leading scorer. While Rapinoe and Morgan both had six goals and three assists, Rapinoe played fewer minutes during the tournament, giving her the edge in the tiebreaker.

Giulia Gwinn, who made her World Cup debut this year for the German National Team, won the FIFA Best Young Player Award. Gwinn scored the only goal in Germany’s opener against China, for which she was also awarded Player of the Match.

Historically, the US and German teams have been dominant at the Women’s World Cup. Of the eight tournaments that have been played since it began in 1991, six have been won by either Germany (2003, 2007) or the US (1991, 1999, 2015, 2019). There has never been a final in which neither Germany nor the US were competing.

When the USWNT went 13-0 against Thailand in the group stage this year, they surpassed Germany’s previous record for the biggest victory in Women’s World Cup history, when they went 11-0 against Argentina in 2007.

With their victory over the Netherlands in the final, the US extended their winning streak to 17 unbeaten World Cup matches, passing the mark set by Germany between the 2003 and 2007 tournaments, when they went 15 games without a loss.

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