USWNT sets scoring record against Thailand

The reigning Women’s World Cup champion sure didn’t ease into France 2019 as the US Women’s National Team thrashed Thailand 13-0 in its opening game of the tournament.

Jill Ellis’ side set a World Cup record for the highest score in their first game in France, and seven different players got in on the act by grabbing goals in Reims.

Alex Morgan scored five times as the USWNT — ranked No. 1 in the world — eclipsed their previous biggest win in the Women’s World Cup, which was a 7-0 victory in 1991.

READ: US being cast as ‘disgraceful’ villains over Thailand

The result means that the defending champions has lost just one international game since July 2017 and have now won seven games in a row, scoring 36 goals in the process, and not conceding in five matches.

Dividing opinions

But whist the USWNT undoubtedly looked good, the celebrations of the US players after their goals divided opinion.

The US team faced criticism for their “gloating” celebrations, though others believed they were just being professional.

In just its second World Cup, Thailand — ranked 34th in the world – is still in its formative footballing years, and as well being a semi-professional team, the team’s resources are dwarfed by the US.

This disparity has led to criticism aimed at players like Megan Rapinoe who, after scoring the USWNT’s ninth goal, sprinted to the sidelines and indulged in a pre-planned celebration with the bench.

“This was disgraceful for the United States,” said ex-Canadian national team star Clare Rustad. “I would have hoped they could have won with humility and grace, but celebrating goals eight, nine, 10 like they were doing was really unnecessary.”

Continuing the glut?

With a match with Chile coming up on Sunday, could we see more of the same from the holders?

This will be the South American’s second ever game at the Women’s World Cup and if they were to get a result, it would arguably be the biggest shock in tournament history.

La Roja Femenina lost 2-0 to Sweden in their opening game of the tournament and that largely thanks to a wonderful display from goalkeeper Christiane Endler.

And Chile are ranked lower than Thailand in FIFA’s rankings (39th) so the USWNT could yet rack up a second big score at France 2019.

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These two sides faced each other twice in September, with Ellis’ side strolling to 3-0 and 4-0 wins.

With a tougher game against Sweden on the horizon, Ellis might rotate her side, with Morgan and Tobin Heath possibly allowed a rest.