This afternoon the 2015 Women's World Cup continues with a titanic matchup between the United States and Germany, who combined have won four of the six World Cups played. Every Women's World Cup final has included one of these two teams (but never both) and by the time the last dregs of poutine are scooped up tonight in Montreal, we'll know which team will be in this year's final.
For a more in-depth look, check out our detailed preview of the match. The short version is that after two relatively easy matches in the knockouts, the Americans' path to the Cup that has eluded them for 16 years has hit a massive roadblock. The US has the advantage in overall talent level and — thanks to a shorter more dominant quarterfinal match and the involuntary resting of two key players — fitness. Germany has the advantage in a reliable, well-understood system and the confidence from a series of blowouts and a tough win over world #3 France.
Will the return of Megan Rapinoe and Lauren Holiday to the lineup propel the team to even greater results, or will it throw the team that looked so confident against China into disarray? Is this the moment when Abby Wambach puts the team back on her shoulders, or will she be forced to leave it for younger players to push the attack?
If the US wins tonight, they will feel that their toughest test is behind them and a final this weekend — even against defending champions Japan — without any major mistakes would earn them the Cup. A loss, and the doubts that the team was ever set up to beat the other top teams in the world would win out, likely forcing a reset of the coaching staff and roster.
How to Watch
This is your USWNT gamethread. No Maybes.