USA battles Japan in must-win game at FIFA U-20 Women's World … –

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U.S. U-20 WYNT vs. JAPAN – Group D
2022 FIFA Under-20 Women’s World Cup
Aug. 17 | Estadio Alejandro Morera Soto; Alajuela, Costa Rica 
After a convincing 3-0 win over Ghana to open the 2022 FIFA Under-20 Women’s World Cup and a gut-wrenching 3-0 loss to the Netherlands in its second match, the U.S. Under-20 Women’s Youth National Team faces a must-win scenario in its final group stage match against Japan on Wednesday, Aug. 17 at Estadio Morera Soto (7 p.m. ET; FS2).
The simplest scenario for the USA to advance to the quarterfinals would be a victory over Japan by at least two goals. Japan leads Group D with six points and plus-3 goal difference. The USA and the Netherlands are tied on points with three each, but the Dutch have a plus-2 goal difference to the USA’s zero. If the USA can win by two goals over Japan, it would give both teams six points, but the Americans would have a plus-2 goal difference – with goal difference being the first tiebreaker — and Japan would be at plus-1, putting the USA ahead of the Japanese no matter the result of the Ghana-Netherlands match, which will be contested at the same time at Estadio Nacional. If Ghana and Netherlands draw, the USA can advance with any victory over Japan.
All the matches of the tournament are being broadcast on either Fox Soccer Plus, FS1 or FS2 and are available online at and the Fox Sports App with corresponding authentication. All the knockout stage matches will be shown on either FS1 (five matches, including both semifinals and the championship game) or FS2 (three matches). Additionally, all 32 games are being streamed live on FIFA+ in territories that do not have TV rights holders for the tournament.
GOALKEEPERS (3): Mia Justus (Florida State; Lakewood, Ohio; 7), Neeku Purcell (UCLA; Seattle, Wash.; 6), Teagan Wy (California; Rancho Santa Margarita, Calif.; 2)
DEFENDERS (6): Lauren Flynn (Florida State; Arlington, Va.; 9/0), Samar Guidry (Virginia; McKinney, Texas; 11/0) Emily Mason (Rutgers; Flemington, N.J.; 16/3), Ayo Oke (California; Lawrenceville, Ga.; 10/0), Lilly Reale (UCLA; Hingham, Mass.; 7/1), Laney Rouse (Virginia; Cary, N.C.; 8/0) 
MIDFIELDERS (5): Korbin Albert (Notre Dame; Grayslake, Ill.; 5/1), Talia DellaPeruta (UNC; Cumming, Ga.; 20/5), Annie Karich (Santa Clara; Surfside, Calif.; 1/0), Carina Lageyre (Duke; Cooper City, Fla.; 5/0), Olivia Moultrie (Portland Thorns FC; Wilsonville, Ore.; 8/2)
FORWARDS (7): Trinity Byars (Texas; Richardson, Texas; 10/3); Michelle Cooper (Duke; Clarkston, Mich.; 8/9); Simone Jackson (USC; Redondo Beach, Calif.; 9/7), Andrea Kitahata (Stanford; Hillsborough, Calif.; 7/7), Ally Sentnor (UNC; Hanson, Mass.; 3/1), Jaedyn Shaw (San Diego Wave FC; Frisco, Texas; 5/3), Alyssa Thompson (Total Futbol Academy; Studio City, Calif.; 5/4)
The USA’s convincing 3-0 win over Ghana marked the USA’s fifth win in an opening match of a FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup. The USA had failed to win its opening match in its last three U-20 Women’s World Cup appearances with two losses and draw. The only other time the USA failed to win its opening match of a U-20 World Cup was a 1-1 draw with Ghana in 2010. This time around, the USA out-shot Ghana 21-5 and did not allow a shot on goal. The USA scored at opportune times, getting an 11th minute goal from team captain Michelle Cooper, a 38th minute score from Alyssa Thompson after Ghana’s Jacqueline Owusu had received a red card for stomping on the Achilles tendon of midfielder Korbin Albert, and then again just six minutes into the second half via Ally Sentnor to effectively put the game away. The USA will rue not finding the net a few more times after playing with a player advantage for almost an hour. Ghana went hard into every tackle and received four yellow cards in addition to the red.
Despite a solid attacking performance – the USA out-shot the Netherlands 14-11 and had seven corner kicks to three for the Dutch – the USA was not sharp on either end of the field and fell 3-0 in the second Group D match for both teams. Netherlands on the other hand, was much more efficient, putting seven of its 11 shots on goal and scored off a corner kick, a great strike from distance and a penalty kick to give itself a leg up on the USA heading into the final match-day of Group D play. The Dutch also created some goal mouth scrambles in front of the U.S net via their talented wingers. U.S. head coach Tracey Kevins made six changes to the lineup that faced Ghana, and then put on three subs at half and two more in the 67th minute in search of a goal or two, but it proved to the Netherlands’ night and the USA could not find the net.
GOALKEEPERS (3): 1-Shiori Fukuda (Urawa Red Diamonds Ladies), 18-Shu Ohba (East Tennessee State University, USA), 21-Nina Noda (NTV Tokyo Verdy Belez)   
DEFENDERS (6): 2-Akane Nishino (Mynavi Sendai Ladies), 3-Ibuki Nagae (AC Nagano Parceiro Ladies), 8-Rion Ishikawa (Urawa Red Diamonds Ladies), 7-Mihoshi Sugisawa (Omiya Ardija Ventus), 12-Haruna Tabata (Cerezo Osaka Sakai Ladies), 16-Shinomi Koyama (Cerezo Osaka Sakai Ladies)
MIDFIELDERS (7): 5-Manaka Hayashi (JFA Academy Fukushima), 6-Aemu Oyama (NTV Tokyo Verdy Beleza), 8-Kokona Iwasaki (NTV Tokyo Verdy Beleza), 14-Manaka Matsukubo (JFA Academy Fukushima), 15-Suzu Amano (INAC Kobe Leonessa), 19-Riko Yoshida (Chifure AS Elfen Saitama), 20-Urara Watanabe (Nittaidai FC Ladies) 
FORWARDS (5): 9-Yuzuki Yamamoto (NTV Tokyo Verdy Beleza), 10-Aoba Fujino (Tokyo Verdy Beleza), 11-Maika Hamano (INAC Kobe Leonessa), 13-Mei Shimada (Urawa Red Diamonds Ladies), 17-Maya Hijikata (NTV Tokyo Verdy Beleza) 
Twenty-four players have been called up.
Annie Karich has been added to the USA roster.
Three different USA players found the net.
The loss sets up a crucial match against Japan.
The USA beat Canada 4-1 in the Final.
Individual ECNL Girls awards were unveiled.
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