USA vs Vietnam LIVE: USWNT win 3-0 as Sophia Smith nets twice in Women’s World Cup opener

Tearing teammates pay tribute to Rapinoe

The United States begin their defense of their title at the Women’s World Cup when the four-time world champions play Vietnam tonight in Auckland.

The USA wants to be the first team to win the World Cup three times in a row. Stars like Alex Morgan and Megan Rapinoe return from their victory in France four years ago. The defending champions are favorites to retain their title but face competition from top European sides such as England and Germany, who are confident they have closed the gap.

The stage is set for the next generation to shine, such as star striker Sophia Smith, who is one of 14 players in the squad making their debut at the World Cup. The USA has also had a new head coach for four years: Vlatko Andonovski takes over from Jill Ellis, who led the team to titles in 2015 and 2019.

Follow live updates as USA kick off their Women’s World Cup campaign.


Sophia Smith was declared player of the match

World Cup rookie Sophia Smith was named Woman of the Match by FIFA.

That’s hardly surprising considering the 22-year-old scored both US goals in the first half and assisted Lindsey Horan on the third goal in the second half.

Sophia Smith celebrates with Megan Rapinoe and Lindsey Horan after USA’s third goal against Vietnam on July 21, 2023

(AP Photo/Abbie Parr)

Io DoddsJuly 22, 2023 4:49 am


26 shots to 0

In case you’re wondering, in the entire game, the USA had 26 shots, six of them on target, while Vietnam had zero.

Io DoddsJuly 22, 2023 4:37 am


Julie Ertz: “We have to seize our chances”

US midfielder Julie Ertz returns to the World Cup after a two-year absence from professional football while she gave birth to son Madden Matthew.

But just in a TV interview, she said the only feelings going through her mind during the game were “determination and determination.”

“The win is huge. That’s how you want to start a tournament,” she said. “Of course you will go back and watch [to learn from mistakes]… but a win definitely adds momentum.”

When asked what she thinks the team should improve on before playing the Netherlands next year, she said: “I think we can definitely take our chances. We had some [tonight] that we weren’t done. And I think just being clean on the ball.”

Julie Ertz (left) participates in a brawl for the ball during the U.S. Women’s World Cup match against Vietnam July 22, 2023

(AP Photo/Rafaela Pontes)

Io DoddsJuly 22, 2023 4:32 am


Sophia Smith: ‘It’s good to have a game in the bag’

One of the stars of this show was a World Cup rookie Sophia Smithwho scored both US goals in the first half.

“I feel relieved. “I was a bit scared before the tournament, so it’s good to have a game in the bag, get a feel for it and know what to expect,” she said just now in a post-match interview. “We know the next few games will be tough.”

Io DoddsJuly 22, 2023 4:21 am


A modest victory for Team USA

It’s a victory for the US, but maybe not the victory they were hoping for. As reigning champions and as Vietnam made their World Cup debut, many bookies were predicting them to score 5 or 6 goals.

“The USA is like a high mountain, but we won’t shy away from climbing it,” said team coach Mai Duc Chung before the game. “Vietnam will have sensible tactics. Our first goal is to limit the number of goals conceded and avoid injuries.”

It worked, and Vietnam will probably be happy with that result. Many pundits point to the inexperienced USA squad tonight, as 12 of their 23 players and six of the starting XI have never played in a World Cup before.

On the other hand, the US may be happy to have given their newer players some experience. They will need it when they play the Netherlands next Wednesday.

Io DoddsJuly 22, 2023 4:19 am


FINAL: USA 3-0 Vietnam

90+9 minutes: The final whistle sounds and it’s USA 3, Vietnam 0.

Io DoddsJuly 22, 2023 4:08 am


United States 3-0 Viet Nam

90+8 minutes: A valiant last-ditch effort from Thu Thao, storming across the US with almost no resistance. But she doesn’t get in the middle and Alyssa Naheher has little trouble stopping her shot.

Io DoddsJuly 22, 2023 4:06 am


United States 3-0 Viet Nam

90+7 mins: Uff, what a close miss for Rose Lavelle. A cross goes awry but she still manages to hit it, throwing it just over the bar.

Io DoddsJuly 22, 2023 4:05 am


United States 3-0 Viet Nam

90+4 mins: Hai Linh Tran is relieved from the field. Team USA has just five minutes to improve their 3-0 lead, but Vietnam’s defense remains as spirited as it has been throughout the game.

Io DoddsJuly 22, 2023 4:03 am


United States 3-0 Viet Nam

88 mins: It looks like a bad injury for Hai Linh Tran, who fell to an eager tackle from Kelley O’Hara.

The game is suspended for a while while the referee reprimands O’Hara, adding to what is now nine minutes of overtime. It was a brutal game.

Io DoddsJuly 22, 2023 3:59 am

Zack Zwiezen

Zack Zwiezen is a USTimesPost U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. Zack Zwiezen joined USTimesPost in 2023 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing

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