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I CAN’T BELIEVE IT’S OVER! I CAN BELIEVE WE WON! ICYMI (read: were living under a rock), here’s what you need to know about the final two matches of the 2019 tournament that happened this weekend:

SATURDAY

Sweden and England faced off to see who’d take the third place position, and while people thought England had the edge due to their overall impressive form this tournament, it was clear that Sweden were the only ones with their heads in the game once the whistle blew to begin; the Swedes beat the English 2-1 when all was said and done. British players tried to say something along the lines of “It was clear that Sweden cared more about winning the match than we did; we only wanted to play in the final, and since we couldn’t do that we just didn’t care anymore,” which I think is pretty shitty. I totally get why it sucks to have to play for any position besides first, but I also think it’s a slap in the face to all the other eliminated teams to imply you’re not trying your best just because you can’t take home the main trophy. Anyway, that’s my rant. Whether or not the English side actually tried, I think Sweden looked pretty tip-top, and my hat goes off to them.

SUNDAY

Call me an arrogant American, but I felt it in my bones that we were going to win this whole thing before the match against the Netherlands even began. And WIN IT WE DID! (Despite some mega-knocks taken by Sauerbrunn and O’Hara.)

The Dutch had a couple of decent looks, and major shout-out to the goalkeeper (Sari van Veenendaal) for the saves she did come up with, because they were huge, but (and I hope I’m just repeating facts you already know at this point since that’s all anyone was talking about yesterday) at the end of the day we took it home with a 2-0 final score. FUCKING INCREDIBLE. Pinoe’s PK was great to watch, but can we talk about that one that Rose Lavelle ripped in? SO GOOD. Chills, all of it.

TAKEAWAYS

We needed this win, because it was about A LOT OF THINGS that go bigger than soccer. (Equality, politics…the list goes on.) And I’m incredibly happy that things turned out the way they did. This is fucking historic, and change WILL come because of it. (How big those changes will be, that’s to be seen. But things will not be the same, that is for sure.)

That being said, I would have been glad (no, really) to see any of these squads walk away with a win, because all of our federations need to step things up, though some more than others. I do hope that (since we’re one of the most well-funded programs) the USWNT’s win will show others what can be achieved with boosted resources. I also hope our status can help strong-arm FIFA into wrangling some of those more disinterested federations into implementing more steps forward. Again, only time will tell on that.

Regardless, I’m very happy that I was able to watch just about every match // this is honestly my favorite event, and it makes me emotional, and it lights a fire in my soul, and etc. Before I sound any more loserly, here is our final batch of headlines:

Thanks for hangin’ out! See you in four years, hopefully under new presidential leadership!

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