World Cup Final: Rapinoe To Start For USA, Martens Fit for Netherlands

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USA’s Megan Rapinoe (L) and the Netherland’s Lieke Martens. AFP photos

Megan Rapinoe will return to captain the United States in today’s women’s World Cup final after missing the defeat of England in the last four due to a hamstring problem.

Rapinoe, scorer of braces in the wins over Spain in the last 16 and France in the quarter-finals, replaces Christen Press on the left of the attack.

The other change sees Samantha Mewis come into the midfield with Lindsey Horan making way.

Meanwhile, Barcelona winger Lieke Martens has been passed fit to start for the Netherlands after having to come off at half-time in the semi-final against Sweden due to a toe injury.

Martens was the player of the tournament when the Netherlands won Euro 2017 on home soil two years ago.

Anouk Dekker comes into the Dutch defence in their first ever women’s World Cup final appearance with Merel van Dongen dropping out.

Starting line-ups for the women’s World Cup final between the United States and the Netherlands in Lyon on Sunday (kick-off 1500 GMT):

USA (4-3-3)

Alyssa Naeher; Kelley O’Hara, Abby Dahlkemper, Becky Sauerbrunn, Crystal Dunn; Rose Lavelle, Julie Ertz, Samantha Mewis; Tobin Heath, Alex Morgan, Megan Rapinoe (capt)

Coach: Jill Ellis (USA)

Netherlands (4-3-3)

Sari van Veenendaal (capt); Desiree van Lunteren, Anouk Dekker, Stefanie van der Gragt, Dominique Bloodworth; Jackie Groenen, Danielle van de Donk, Sherida Spitse; Lineth Beerensteyn, Vivianne Miedema, Lieke Martens

Coach: Sarina Wiegman (NED)

Referee: Stephanie Frappart (FRA)


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