The USWNT celebrate a goal by Trinity Rodman during the second half in a friendly against Uzbekistan on April 12, 2022 in Chester, Penn.
From the start of the Concacaf W Championship, an eventual final between the U.S. and Canada appeared likely.
They are the two best teams in the region — U.S. is No. 1 and Canada is No. 6 in the FIFA rankings — and they’ve been playing like it so far in the competition between teams from North America, Central America and the Caribbean.
Statistically, the squads are dead even so far. Both teams are undefeated and have not allowed a goal in the competition. Both sides finished 3-0-0 in group play, outscoring their respective opposition 9-0. In the semifinals, both sides recorded 3-0 triumphs, the U.S. over Costa Rica and Canada past Jamaica.
Now the heavily anticipated final is set to take place tonight at 10 p.m. ET in Monterrey, Mexico, where the winner will have the unique opportunity to qualify for the Olympic Games Paris 2024, two years before the event kicks off. The losing side will meet the third-place team in Monterrey for the second Concacaf Olympic berth at a time to be determined.
Until the game kicks off tonight, the Canadians have the upper hand in the rivalry because of their win over the U.S. at last year’s Olympic Games Tokyo 2020. After Canada defeated the Americans 1-0 in the semifinals, it went on to win gold over Sweden; the U.S. settled for bronze.
U.S. coach Vlatko Andonovski said that Olympic defeat is rarely talked about by his team.
“We haven’t really talked about it a lot,” Andonovski said on a Sunday morning virtual press conference. “Probably one of the reasons why is because if you look at the group of players that is here, I don’t know if there’s more than four or five players that were on the field in that game. I haven’t really looked into it a little bit deeper, but that’s probably one of the reasons why the players are not talking about it.”
For the record, seven current U.S. players competed in that match — goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher, who was replaced in the 30th minute after suffering a knee injury; defenders Becky Sauerbrunn and Kelley O’Hara; midfielders Lindsey Horan and Rose Lavelle; and forwards Alex Morgan and Megan Rapinoe. Defender Emily Sonnett was also in the squad but did not play.
Canada head coach Bev Priestman has been observing the U.S. closely since last year’s Olympics and notices some slight differences in its approach to the game.