Finals Day

July 7, 2019 featured three finals. The 2019 Women’s World Cup, Gold Cup and Copa America played their finals on this Sunday.

In the day’s first final the 2019 Women’s World Cup was decided between the USA and Holland. The latter had reached their first final on the back of solid if unspectacular play and needed a massive game to dethrone the defending champions. The US had won the 2015 Women’s World Cup in Canada and was big favorites to repeat. A scoreless first half had given the Dutch some hope but US took control and scored twice to win for the fourth time since 1991. Megan Rapinoe from the penalty spot and Rose Lavelle sealed the win.

The day’s second final featured favorites and hosts face the surprising Peru in the Copa America final. Peru had surprised a disappointing and aggressive Chile in the semi final and reached the final. Peru was one of the third placed team to qualify fro the knockouts. The VAR (Video Assisted Referee) dominated Copa had reached farcical levels at times with multiple stoppages to check a play on video. The once again struggling Argentina had been beaten in the semis and Brazil overcame Peru with relative 3-1 ease. Everton had opened the scoring but Peru had leveled late in the half through a Paolo Guerrero penalty. The Peruvians couldn’t hang on to the tie with a minute left in the half as Gabriel Jesus found an opening in the middle and beat Pedro Gallese. Late in the second half the win was confirmed with a Richarlison penalty.

Unsurprisingly the Gold Cup final was contested between the US and Mexico. Although the match was taking place in Chicago the crowd consisted, as usual, mostly of Mexican fans. The first half featured the US missing several half chances and a good one early when Jozy Altidore missed the net by inches. The second half was a mirror of the first with Mexico repeatedly winning the ball back and not being able to finish. Andres Guardado shot high several times as Mexico threatened often. In the 73rd minute a simple and short Raul Jimenez layoff was shot in by Jonathan dos Santos. The 1-0 score stood in a sometimes scrappy game. Mexico raised the trophy for the eighth time.

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