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2019 Women's World Cup

Five takeaways from the USA’s scrappy win over Spain

REIMS, FRANCE - JUNE 24: during the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup France Round Of 16 match between Spain and USA at Stade Auguste Delaune on June 24, 2019 in Reims, France. (Photo by Lewis Gettier)

REIMS, France — The United States women’s national team advanced to the quarterfinal round of the 2019 World Cup on Monday night on the back of two Megan Rapinoe goals, both scored from the penalty spot.

The win over Spain in the Round of 16 now sets up the much-anticipated quarterfinal match against France this Friday in Paris.

Here are five thoughts from the U.S. win against Spain.

Abby Dahlkemper and Becky Sauerbrunn got the job done

Through four games in the World Cup, the most consistent defender for the Americans has been Abby Dahlkemper. On Monday night, Dahlkemper continued her excellent tournament, making a number of key defensive clearances, getting stuck in to win loose balls, and providing excellent passing out of the back—as she did to Tobin Heath on the play in the fifth minute that led to the first U.S. penalty.

Following a rough start—one in which she helped gift Spain a goal with a crucial giveaway—Becky Sauerbrunn played her way back into the match nicely, providing crucial recoveries the few times that Spain looked like they might break through and covering well for Crystal Dunn on the left side of the American defense.

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