Fuel Soccer Talk: Belgium breakdown; Class of 99 honored; Rooney seeing red

Women take the front page on this terrific Tuesday!

Plenty of kudos to kick around to the U.S. Women’s National Team

The U.S. Women’s National Team came out firing on all cylinders, blanking Belgium 6-0 in front of 20,941 fans at Banc of California Stadium on Monday night to continue its preparation for the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup in France this summer. The first four U.S. goals all came via headers, three from set plays. The USA opened the scoring in the 14th minute via a header from Carli Lloyd, followed shortly after by a second headed goal from Lloyd in the 19th minute. It was Lloyd’s first multi-goal game since she scored a hat trick vs. Panama during World Cup qualifying last October.

Lloyd was just one of many U.S. players to come up big in the first-ever meeting with Belgium.


  • Lindsey Horan’s goal was her first of 2019 and upped her total to eight career goals in 66 caps.
  • Samantha Mewis played in her 47th game for the U.S. WNT Monday and scored her ninth international goal. It was her second start of 2019 after last starting vs. Brazil on March 5.
  • Diamond Bar, Calif. native Alex Morgan scored career goal No. 101 and her third of 2019. She is now in sole possession of sixth place on the all-time scoring list, behind Abby Wambach (184), Mia Hamm (158), Kristine Lilly (130), Michelle Akers (107) and Carli Lloyd (107). Morgan has scored 28 goals over her last 33 WNT matches, a span that runs from the end of 2017.
  • Palos Verdes Estates, Calif. native Christen Press earned cap No. 113 tonight in front of her hometown crowd and earned three assists to up her career total to 27. She has four assists so far in 2019.
  • Tierna Davidson earned her first assist of 2019 and third of her career. It marked the 19th career appearance for Davidson with the U.S. WNT.
  • Crystal Dunn started in the midfield today for the second time this year and earned an assist. It was her second assist of 2019.
  • WNT head coach Jill Ellis used all six subs in the game: at halftime goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris, defender Abby Dahlkemper and forward Alex Morgan came on for Alyssa Naeher, Julie Ertz and Crystal Dunn, respectively. Allie Long entered for Lindsey Horan in the 60th minute, Jessica McDonald for Mallory Pugh in the 61st, and San Clemente, Calif., native McCall Zerboni replaced Samantha Mewis in the 73rd.

Who else deserves a game ball from the convincing win?

USWNT pays tribute to the Class of 1999

At halftime of Monday’s match with Belgium, U.S. Soccer honored the 1999 FIFA Women’s World Cup championship team with a tribute video and individual player recognition to celebrate their historic title 20 summers ago that forever changed the landscape for not only women’s soccer in the United States but women’s sports globally.

U.S. Soccer invited the entire team to Los Angeles to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the team’s historic run through the tournament that ended on July 10, 1999, with a dramatic penalty kick victory against China PR as Carla Overbeck, Joy Fawcett, Kristine Lilly, Mia Hamm and Brandi Chastain – in that order — buried their kicks to send a crowd of 90,125 fans at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, Calif., and millions more around the USA, into a patriotic frenzy. The crowd is still a record for largest attendance ever to witness a women’s soccer match.

The members of the 1999 FIFA Women’s World Cup championship team that will be attendance are: goalkeepers Briana Scurry, Tracy Noonan, Saskia Webber; defenders Christie Pearce, Brandi Chastain, Sara Whalen (now Hess), Joy Fawcett and Kate Sobrero (now Markgraf); midfielders Tiffany Roberts (now Sahaydak), Lorrie Fair, Julie Foudy, Kristine Lilly (now Heavey), Tisha Venturini (now Hoch) and Michelle Akers; and forwards Shannon MacMillan, Mia Hamm (now Garciaparra), U.S. Soccer Vice President Cindy Parlow (now Cone) and Danielle Fotopoulos. Only team captain Carla Overbeck and Tiffeny Milbrett were unable to attend.


What will be the legacy of that 1999 team?

LAFC’s Carlos Vela steps up as Wayne Rooney steps out

Wayne Rooney was shown a red card as D.C. United suffered their first defeat of the 2019 Major League Soccer season to LAFC. Carlos Vela scored his MLS-leading seventh goal of the season as LAFC continue their unbeaten start in 2019. Diego Rossi added a hat trick for LAFC, including a brilliant curler to the back post.

Ian Quillen of continues to be impressed with Vela. “For once, he wasn’t the star of the show, but Carlos Vela is increasingly becoming the odds-on early favorite for the Landon Donovan MLS MVP award. With his early strike and assist on Diego Rossi’s first, he now has seven goals and five assists through six matches, and seems ready to challenge for the first 20-20 season in MLS history. Toronto FC’s Sebastian Giovinco made the last effort at that in 2015, hitting 22 goals and adding 16 assists in his maiden MLS campaign.


Did Rooney deserve the red card? 

LET’S TALK: OK, now you’ve read what’s on my mind…what are your thoughts on the above or any other “football” happenings?

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