Alamy Stock Photo Lindsey Horan scores for USA against the Netherlands.

World Cup holders USA rally to earn draw against Netherlands

Portugal defeated Vietnam 2-0 in the day’s other Group E fixture.

LAST UPDATE | Jul 27th 2023, 10:43 AM

LINDSEY HORAN DENIED the Netherlands a famous win over the United States on Thursday in a 1-1 draw.

The United States beat the Netherlands 2-0 four years ago to retain the World Cup and are now pursuing a third title in a row, something that has never been done before.

But they were far from their best in front of a crowd of 27,312 in Wellington and fell behind in the 17th minute to a superb strike from midfielder Jill Roord.

Vlatko Andonovski’s side grew into the game and struck back just after the hour with a header from skipper Horan, moments after she clashed with her Lyon teammate Danielle van de Donk.

The Americans might have won it after that, but the biggest match of the group stages ended in stalemate and neither side is yet assured of a berth in the knockout phase heading into their final group games.

On Tuesday, the United States face Portugal and the Netherlands play Vietnam, with both expected to win.

US coach Andonovski described Horan’s response to the altercation with Van de Donk as a turning point.

“It’s a really good example of the leader that she is. She gets fouled, kicked, hurt and obviously it’s a very difficult moment,” Andonovski said.

“And instead of crying about it, she just goes and makes a statement.”

His opposite number, Andries Jonker, was content with the point and called the game a good advert for women’s football.

“These games are battles from the first second to the last. The only thing you can say is that women’s football has evolved incredibly,” the Netherlands coach said.

“We’re there, along with the US, and I’m very satisfied with that.”

Portugal defeated Vietnam 2-0 in the other match in the group on Thursday in an encounter between two sides making their debuts at the World Cup.

First-half goals by Telma Encarnacao and Kika Nazareth ended Vietnam’s hopes of going any further. 

– © AFP 2023

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