The inaugural SheBelieves Cup – a round-robin tournament created by U.S. Soccer to pit its women's national team against some of the world's best teams – wasn't constructed to have a championship game. But good fortune has ensured there will be a decisive finale between the United States and Germany.
To win its inaugural tourney, the top-ranked and world champion United States will need a victory in its third and final game against Germany on Wednesday in Boca Raton, Fla. (7:30 p.m. ET, ESPN3). All the Germans need to lift the SheBelieves Cup is a draw. Both teams have six points but Germany holds the tiebreaker having scored one more goal than the Americans.
The U.S. did its part on Sunday to set up the showdown. Alex Morgan scored in stoppage time to give the Americans a 1-0 win over the French at Nissan Stadium in Nashville, Tenn. Mallory Pugh set up Morgan with a through ball as the 17-year-old continued to impress as a starter for the senior team.
"Mall played me in perfectly, and all I needed to do was put it past the keeper," said Morgan, who scored her 63rd international goal.
The U.S. was fortunate not to be down early, as goalkeeper Hope Solo made two huge saves in less than a minute to deny France.
"Obviously ecstatic with the world-class goal at the end there," U.S. head coach Jill Ellis told reporters afterward. "But as I said to the players, it's also three points in this tournament. This is our first time at this tournament, and we'd obviously love to win it. And one more game to go."
In Sunday's second game in Nashville, Germany scored two second-half goals to come back and hand England another hearbreaking defeat in a 2-1 victory. The Lionesses fell 1-0 to the U.S. last Thursday on a 72nd-minute goal by Crystal Dunn.
If you missed Sunday's games, you can follow the action as it happened with the Scribble Live stream below.