The United States women’s national team played its second game of the 2019 World Cup this afternoon. The Americans had little trouble with Chile, winning 3-0, to increase their points total to six, locking up a knockout round push.
Jill Ellis’ team got the win with star players Alex Morgan, Megan Rapinoe and Tobin Heath, among others, on the bench.
Carli Lloyd started in Morgan’s place, scoring two goals.
USA’s head coach explained her decision making following the win. She said that she wants to spread the minutes around early in the tournament.
“We need them,” she said of the players who started today, according to USA Today. “We need them in a good place. If they can have minutes and their butterflies are out of the way, it helps us down the line.”
— U.S. Soccer WNT (@USWNT) June 16, 2019
Ellis’ decision paid off in a major way, as the Americans notched a second win and kept some of its star players fresh heading into a pivotal third game. At the same time, important players like Lloyd got some needed playing time.
USA is next set to face Sweden on Thursday.
Kickoff is set for 3 p.m. E.T.