Megan Rapinoe and Carli Lloyd each scored a pair of goals and the United States won the bronze medal in women’s soccer at the Tokyo Olympics with a 4-3 victory over Australia.
It was arguably the best the Americans had looked during the course of a rocky tournament that opened with an uncharacteristic 3-0 loss to Sweden. Rapinoe set the tone early with a goal scored directly from a corner kick.
The loss spoiled the Australians’ first-ever trip to the medal round at the Olympics. No Australian soccer team, men or women, has ever won a medal.
The Matildas were the underdogs against the United States, the top-ranked team in the world and the defending World Cup champions who came to Japan hoping for a fifth gold medal. But the Americans struggled at times during the tournament, including a 1-0 loss to Canada in the semifinals.
The win marks the U.S.'s return to the podium for the first time since the 2012 Olympics in London when that squad won gold. It also marked the team's first-ever bronze medal and their first medal other than gold since women's soccer was instituted at the Olympics in 1996.