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USA Beats Iceland Behind Macario, Pugh Braces to Win 2022 SheBelieves Cup | Bleacher Report


AP Photo/Jeffrey McWhorter

The United States Women’s National Team won the 2022 SheBelieves Cup with a 5-0 victory over Iceland on Wednesday at Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas. Catarina Macario and Mallory Pugh led the way with two goals apiece.

It’s the third consecutive SheBelieves Cup win for USWNT and fifth overall, the most since the tournament’s inception in 2016.

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The <a href=”https://twitter.com/USWNT?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>@USWNT</a> defeat Iceland 5-0 to claim their fifth SheBelieves Cup 🏆 <a href=”https://t.co/yzF5aidjW0″>pic.twitter.com/yzF5aidjW0</a>

It was the first meeting between the United States and Iceland since the 2015 Algarve Cup where they played to a scoreless draw. Playing in its first SheBelieves Cup, Iceland finished second with wins over New Zealand and the Czech Republic. The U.S. topped New Zealand but played the Czech Republic to a draw.

The United States came out with some early pressure, dominating possession in the first half 61 percent to 39 percent and limiting Iceland to just two shots at the net.

The U.S. broke through in the 37th minute when Macario found the back of the net with a beautiful strike on the team’s 10th shot of the night to take a 1-0 lead.

Macario wasn’t done there. Just before the first half ended she was able to chip in a loose ball in the box for her second goal of the night.

The second half saw much of the same with the United States keeping the pressure on, and it seemed like just a matter of time until another goal would be scored.

Pugh got in on the action in the 60th minute, converting a beautiful through ball from Ashley Sanchez. It was the 20th goal of Pugh’s international career.

Despite the 3-0 lead, the U.S. didn’t let up. A press at midfield led to a breakaway opportunity for Pugh and Macario. A beautiful display of unselfishness on a give-and-go led to Pugh scoring her second goal of the night in the 75th minute.

The front three of Macario, Pugh and Sophia Smith were subbed out in the 78th minute after a stellar performance.

Kristie Mewis put the icing on the cake for the U.S. with a goal in the 88th minute to cap the scoring. It was her fifth career international goal.

The United States was so dominant with its pressure that goalie Casey Murphy only had to make one save on the night. Iceland goalie Sandra Siguroardottir did an admirable job with seven saves.

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