Netherlands vs. United States
|Date & Time||Sunday July 7, 2019, 11:00 AM (EDT)|
Parc Olympique Lyonnais
The Line: US -225 / Netherlands +650 / Draw +320 -- Over/Under: 2.5
Netherlands and United States meet Sunday in the FIFA Women's World Cup Final at Parc Olympique Lyonnais.
Netherlands finds itself in the World Cup Final in just its second ever appearance after beating Sweden on a goal in the 99th minute from Jackie Groenen. Netherlands controlled the ball for 54 percent of the match, got four shots on goal and survived an overall very physical match that looked like it was destined for penalty kicks. Oranje entered this tournament deep offensively and highly accomplished, but it’s been the defense that’s led the way, producing back-to-back shutouts and not allowing a goal in six of its last nine matches overall. Netherlands is also one of those teams that seems to get stronger as the match plays out, as each of its last goals scored and nine of its 11 goals this tournament have come in the second half. While maybe not as explosive as its upcoming opponent, Netherlands isn’t a team that should be slept on and certainly isn’t a team that’s out of it until the final whistle blows.
The United States survived another close 2-1 match that could have gone either way and one could argue the Americans were a little more lucky than good in their win over England. If it wasn’t for Alyssa Naeher, the US may be playing on Saturday for third place. Regardless, the US is in position to be crowned World Cup champions for the fourth time. The United States has been very quick starters, scoring a goal within the first 12 minutes in very match this tournament and has clear difference makers that no other team can match. The concern is that the US has been shaky at best defensively and allows opponents to find too many holes in the middle where players slip though for quality looks. Megan Rapinoe is also battling a hamstring injury, and while she says she’ll be fit to play Sunday, it was serious enough to keep her out of the England match. It’s not all clear sailing for the Americans.
The US beat Netherlands 3-1 in a 2016 friendly and 2-0 in a 2006 friendly.
While there are concerns with the US defensively and the injury to Rapinoe is worth keeping an eye on, there’s no doubt who the better and deeper team is in this match. Netherlands can take too long to get going and that’s a concern against a United States team that usually strikes early and has the playmakers to keep attacking. Netherlands may not have a chance to make its second half push the way it has throughout this tournament.
With all the controversy surrounding this US team and an opponent that doesn’t have the horses to provide a serious scare, this feels like a game that could get out of hand. I wouldn't be shocked if Team USA is looking to pour it on as one last dig to its critics. I’ll take the US and the spread to provide some actual value in this match.