PARIS (AP) — Carli Lloyd, Mallory Pugh and Christen Press formed a new starting front line as U.S. coach Jill Ellis made seven changes for Sunday night’s Women’s World Cup match against Chile.
Alyssa Naeher remained in goal for the defending champions and Abby Dahlkemper was the lone holdover on the back line, joined at center back by Becky Sauerbrunn, who missed the opening 13-0 rout of Thailand because of a quadriceps injury. Ali Krieger was on the right and 20-year-old Tierna Davidson on the left in her World Cup debut.
Julie Ertz returned to her usual defensive midfield position after shifting to the back line for the opener because of Sauerbrunn’s absence. Morgan Brian replaced Rose Lavelle on the right and Lindsey Horan remained on the left.
The new American front line replaced Tobin Heath, Megan Rapinoe and Alex Morgan, who scored a record-tying five goals Tuesday. Pugh
In a sign of American depth, new starters included the 36-year-old Lloyd, who scored a hat trick in the 2015 World Cup final victory over Japan. Lloyd was among five U.S. players who were on the field for every minute of the 2015 World Cup, joined by Sauerbrunn, goalkeeper Hope Solo and defenders Julie Johnston and Meghan Klingenberg.
The top-ranked U.S. would clinch a berth in the knockout phase with a win.
Lloyd captained the Americans for the fifth time but the first since 2015. Davidson became the youngest American to start a Women’s World Cup match since Tiffany Roberts in 1995 against Norway.
Chile made one change from its opening 2-0 loss to Sweden, starting Claudio Soto, a more defensive midfielder, over Yanara Aedo.
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