In another dominant performance the U.S. women’s national team logged an 8-0 win over Paraguay in Cincinnati, just days after beating the same team 9-0. Hometown hero Rose Lavelle led the way with a goal and three assists, and Alex Morgan also netted a hat trick.
“It’s so special. I get a little emotional thinking about it,” Lavelle told Fox postgame. “This city built me into the person and player I am today, It was a very special night.”
It was the 22nd straight home victory for the USA, which was up 4-0 before 15 minutes had elapsed. In addition to Morgan and Lavelle, the USA received a confident performance from midfielder Catarina Macario (two goals) and inspired play from two of the younger attackers on the squad: dynamic 23-year-old Mallory Pugh and 21-year-old Sophia Smith, who scored her first international goal in her first start.
Although the result came against an opponent ranked No. 50 in the world, the USA still looked like it had more ideas, variability and dynamic play than it did during the Olympics and the matches leading up to Tokyo 2021. The versatile Smith and Pugh had a large part to play in that, popping up in different spots across the attacking front and presenting different options for the U.S. midfield trio — Macario, Andi Sullivan, and Lavelle — which dictated play from the opening whistle.
U.S. national team fans at TQL Stadium unfurled a pregame tifo in honor of Carli Lloyd, who is set to retire from the U.S. national team come October. She started on the bench, but came on in the second half and found yet another goal, the 134th of her career, on an easy finish after an error by Paraguay’s goalkeeper. She scored five of the USA’s nine goals last week.
Lloyd will be back for one final camp in October when the USWNT faces South Korea over two matches to close out the post-Olympic U.S. tour: Oct. 21 in Kansas City and Oct. 26 in St. Paul, Minnesota.
USWNT vs. Paraguay final score
USA – Rose Lavelle (Catarina Macario) – 4th min.
USA – Sophia Smith (Rose Lavelle) – 6th min.
USA – Alex Morgan (Rose Lavelle) – 8th min.
USA – Alex Morgan – 14th min.
USA – Catarina Macario (Rose Lavelle) – 15th min.
USA – Alex Morgan (Sophia Smith) – 53rd min.
USA – Carli Lloyd – 78th min.
USA – Catarina Macario – 82nd min.
(All times Eastern)
Final: USA 8, Paraguay 0
93rd min.: SUB – One final sub with Paraguay’s Sofia Almiron coming in, but she’s not on the field for more than 10 seconds and the ref whistles the end of the match.
90th min.: Two minutes of stoppage time.
88th min.: SUBS – Another two subs for Paraguay: Fiorela Martinez and Yanina Servín come on.
85th min.: Lengthy injury delay for a Paraguay player, who’s down. And she comes out of the game on a cart after trainers stabilized her neck.
82nd min.: 8-0! Nicest goal of the night: Catarina Macario with the side-footed volley that zips past the Paraguay ‘keeper. Perfect technique.
78th min.: Goal USA! After a hand ball by a Paraguay defender right at the edge of the box (which could’ve been a penalty), the Paraguay goalkeeper Bobadilla first punches the ball straight up into the air and then whiffs on its way down and Carli Lloyd just touches it into the goal. One of the easiest goals she’ll ever score.
73rd min.: SUB – Paraguay’s Monserrath Ayala comes off the bench for midfielder Fany Gauto.
70th min.: SUBS – The USA makes its final two subs. Kristie Mewis on for Rose Lavelle, who comes off to an ovation from the TQL Stadium crowd. Tobin Heath replaces Sophia Smith, who had an excellent match.
66th min.: SUB – Paraguay brings on Ramona Martinez for forward Natalie Pena.
65th min.: USA close to another! Fantastic cross by Catarina Macario from the right and Sophia Smith with the downward header at the top of the six-yard box, but it’s right at the ‘keeper. Nice play by the USA.
62nd min.: The USWNT puts the ball into the back of the net on a set piece, but Kelley O’Hara is ruled offside on the flick header by teammate Andi Sullivan.
61st min.: SUBS – Four subs come in at the hour mark for the USWNT – Carli Lloyd (for Morgan), Becky Sauerbrunn (for Davidson), Lynn Williams (for Pugh) and Kelley O’Hara (for Pugh)
59th min.: Paraguay ‘keeper with a near own goal! Catarina Macario scuffs a shot at goal off a corner kick into the box and it slips through the hands of Alicia Bobadilla, who recovers at the goal line.
53rd min.: Alex Morgan hat trick! Sophia Smith with a fantastic run and cross and Morgan applies the expert touch at the near post. That’s a striker’s finish. 6-0 USA. Fifth hat trick of Morgan’s career.
49th min.: Mal Pugh with a ball into the box for Rose Lavelle, but the Cincy native can’t turn it on goal. Lavelle’s not done tonight.
46th min.: Second half is underway. No subs yet. We’ll see when Carli Lloyd makes an appearance.
Halftime: USA 5, Paraguay 0
44th min.: Rose Lavelle drives at the Paraguay defense and sends a shot on goal which is deflected for a corner. Paraguay has to clear it off the goal line after the ‘keeper comes out flailing.
42nd min.: Under a steady drizzle, Paraguay has finally settled into the match. But the USA can turn it on at any moment.
34th min.: Now the injury stoppage is due to a Mal Pugh left shoulder issue. She looks to be in pain. The trainers are on the field with her.
31st min.: A bit of a lull in the match. A few stoppages in play for Paraguay injuries, a few set pieces. Not much flow in this stretch.
20th min.: Great through ball by Andi Sullivan into Alex Morgan in the box, but she can’t control it and it’s a great defensive play by the Paraguay captain.
15th min.: And just seconds later it’s 5-0! This time it’s Catarina Macario with the finish. Another feed from Rose Lavelle, who’s on fire.
14th min.: USA 4-0! Abby Dahlkemper with a cross into the box, Paraguay clears it right to Alex Morgan in the box and she makes them pay.
10th min.: Rare set piece shot for Paraguay that’s hit on goal, and it’s an easy grab for U.S. ‘keeper Jane Campbell.
8th min.: USA scores again! Rose Lavelle again with the delivery and Alex Morgan with the finish. Lavelle is putting on a show for her hometown fans.
6th min.: And there’s another! Mallory Pugh with a driving run from midfield, Rose Lavelle serves up Sophia Smith who scores in her first start. The Paraguay ‘keeper was lost at sea on that play.
4th min.: Goal USA! Macario with a fantastic cross and Rose Lavelle with the run into the box to head home. You couldn’t have scripted it any better: The hometown girl scores the first goal.
1st min.: We’re off.
7:46 p.m.: The ovation that Lavelle got from her hometown crowd. That’s cool.
7:44 p.m.: A look at the tifo in Cincy:
7:30 p.m.: All eyes on Sophia Smith:
5:40 p.m.: The broadcast crew for tonight’s match on FS1:
USWNT vs. Paraguay lineups
Given the absence of a handful of Olympic team players, U.S. head coach Vlatko Andonovski called up three NWSL players who were not part of the team in Tokyo: Andi Sullivan (Washington Spirit), Sophia Smith (Portland Thorns) and Mallory Pugh (Chicago Red Stars). All three will start in Cincinnati.
USWNT star Christen Press opted out to focus on mental health . Out due to injury are goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher , midfielders Julie Ertz , Samantha Mewis and Lindsey Horan , and forward Megan Rapinoe .
USWNT starting lineup (4-3-3, left to right): 21-Jane Campbell-GK — 20-Casey Krueger, 12-Tierna Davidson, 2-Abby Dahlkemper, 14-Emily Sonnett — 17-Catarina Macario, 25-Andi Sullivan, 16-Rose Lavelle — 11-Mallory Pugh, 13-Alex Morgan, 27-Sophia Smith
USWNT subs (8): 18-Adrianna French-GK, 4-Becky Sauerbunn, 19-Crystal Dunn, 14-Emily Sonnett, 5-Kelley O’Hara, 22-Kristie Mewis, 7-Tobin Heath, 6-Lynn Williams, 10-Carli Lloyd
Paraguay coach Epifania Benitez has just 18 players available for the two matches against the United States and she only made three subs in the last game. She makes a switch in goal and at forward for this game.
Paraguay starting lineup (4-1-4-1, left to right): 12-Alicia Bobadilla-GK — 14-Deisy Ojeda, 5-Tania Riso, 8-Lorena Alonso, 2-María Martinez — 3-Limpia Fretes — 4-Daysy Bareiro, 6-Fany Gauto, 10-Fanny Godoy, 7-Fabiola Sandoval — 9-Natalia Pena
Paraguay subs (7): 1-Cristina Recalde-GK, 15-Sofía Almiron, 13-Fiorela Martínez, 17-Yanina Servín, 16-Monserrath Ayala, 18-Ramona Martínez, 11-Mirta Pico
How to watch USA vs. Paraguay
- Date: Tues, Sept. 21
- Time: 7:30 p.m. ET
- TV Channel: FS1
- Spanish-language TV: TUDN
- Stream: fuboTV
The match will be televised in English (FS1) and Spanish (TUDN) with both networks available to be streamed on fuboTV (free 7-day trial for new users ).
Per U.S. Soccer, the match will kick off at 7:45 p.m. ET.