USA return with a vengeance
USA defeated Paraguay 6-1 in the teams' first match in Group D at the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup Jordan 2016 at the Prince Mohammed International Stadium in Zarqa.
USA were eager to get their Jordan 2016 campaign off to a positive start after failing to qualify for Costa Rica 2014, and Frankie Tagliaferri did just that when she received a pinpoint accurate pass from Briana Pinto with her back to goal and took one touch away from her defender before unleashing a powerful shot past Paraguay goalkeeper Heidi Salas to open the scoring in the 11th minute.
Civana Kuhlmann doubled the Stars and Stripes' lead less than three minutes later when Kiara Pickett stormed down the right wing and found her with a precise pass. She then placed her shot past Salas just inside the left post to record her 13th goal in 18 international appearances.
USA struck early once again in the second half when Kuhlmann tricked her way through the Paraguayan defence, which did not close her down quickly enough, after receiving a pass from Kate Wiesner and slid a shot in past Salas.
Just when it seemed USA would cruise to victory, there was hope for Paraguay four minutes after Kuhlmann's goal when centre back Limpia Fretes met a corner kick and calmly guided in her header past USA goalkeeper Laurel Ivory.
USA then regained their three-goal advantage when right-back Pickett made a forward run into Paraguay's penalty area after playing in Ashley Sanchez, who skillfully evaded her defenders on the left wing, and received a pass back from Sanchez before firing a shot low past Salas. Head coach B.J. Snow's team never looked back and were in control for the rest of the match.
Sanchez then scored a goal of her own after making an impressive run on her own dribbling and curling in a shot with her right foot just as she arrived in Paraguay's penalty area.
After receiving a pass from 14-year-old substitute Lia Godfrey, Kuhlmann then completed her hat-trick with arguably the goal of the day when she rifled a shot into the top corner of the net from the edge of the penalty area.
The Stars and Stripes go first in the group on goals scored and will meet Ghana in Amman at the King Abdullah II International Stadium on Tuesday, while Paraguay have another tough test when they face Japan later that day in the same venue.
Live Your Goals Player of the Match: Ashley Sanchez (USA)