The United States women's national team passed its toughest test thus far at the 2019 Women's World Cup to keep its hopes of a repeat alive. Taking on France in Paris, the U.S. got two goals from Megan Rapinoe to beat the tournament hosts, 2-1, to advance to the semifinals. It's the eighth consecutive trip to the World Cup semis for the United States. For perspective, there have only been eight Women's World Cup tournament ever.
Here are three takeaways from the match:
1. Rapinoe sucked the air out of the building
The U.S. was confident entering this one, and Rapinoe's free-kick goal in the opening five minutes completely sucked the air out of the French fans at Parc des Princes. Rapinoe was on the side of the box and at a tight angle -- which normally hands you a low probability of scoring, regardless of which side of the post you choose to kick it to -- and her kick was played to perfection. She did just what any smart player would -- go low and with pace and hope for the best. It worked out perfectly:
That set the tone for the entire game and gave the U.S. even more confidence and some breathing room.
2. Morgan impressed without scoring
Strikers are often judged by their goals -- or lack of them -- and while Morgan hasn't scored in the last four games, she was still crucial in this one. She helped set up the second with a lovely through ball to Tobin Heath, who set up Rapinoe to make it 2-0. Watch here at the bottom right:
A crucial goal that, without it, the U.S. would have needed extra time. She didn't score, but she made an impact to win the game.
3. Time to stop doubting Jill Ellis
Jill Ellis gets a lot of slack, especially for the United States prematurely crashing out of the 2016 Olympics. People questioned her starting Samantha Mewis over Lindsey Horan in this one, yet it was 2-0 by the time Horan came on. In her career as the USWNT coach, Ellis is 12-1-0. That's an undefeated, near perfect record in two Women's World Cups. Time to stop doubting her decisions, because the results speak for themselves.
CBS Sports was with you throughout the entirety of the USA-France match. If you are unable to view the live updates below,.