Rose Lavelle shoots the ball in a game versus the Netherlands on Nov. 27, 2020 in Breda, Netherlands.
It was 509 days ago that the U.S. women’s soccer team last met the Netherlands, but the result was the same.
The stakes were much different Friday from the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup Final that the U.S. won 2-0. But this match was important in its own way, 261 days since the U.S. women played a match of any kind, an important return to play test that the world champions passed by the same scoreline thanks to goals from midfielders Rose Lavelle and Kristie Mewis.
In a tense first half reminiscent of their last match, the U.S. was able to hit the Netherlands on the counter, with Lavelle streaking ahead up the right flank, taking the ball to the edge of the box, cutting inside and firing a curling ball with her left foot into the corner of the goal. The spectacular goal no doubt brought back nightmares for the nine Netherlands players who were on the field the last time when Lavelle made a similar solo run to double the U.S. lead.
Lavelle now has 13 goals in 46 international appearances. The Manchester City midfielder has provided the U.S. with a deft scoring touch that she first displayed at the University Wisconsin, where she was two-time Big Ten Midfielder of the Year and an All-American in 2015.
Her job done, Lavelle made way just past the hour mark for Mewis, who scored her first international goal in over seven years approximately 10 minutes later. The former Boston College standout was making her first appearance for the U.S. since 2014. Her sister Samantha started the match, marking their third international match playing together, the most for sisters in U.S. history.
The match concludes an unusual 2020 schedule for the United States, but one that will end with a perfect 9-0-0 record. The nine matches are the fewest for the U.S. women since 2009. The win extends a U.S. unbeaten streak to 32 matches, dating back to Jan. 19, 2019. The only matches on the 2021 calendar at the moment for the U.S. is the group stage of the Olympic Games, which the team qualified for earlier this year.