Sophia Smith Trinity Rodman USWNT 2023Getty Images

No nerves for newcomers Sophia Smith, Trinity Rodman and Naomi Girma! USWNT winners and losers as young stars avoid World Cup jitters despite Alex Morgan and Megan Rapinoe struggles

It was set up to be Thailand 2.0, but this surely wasn't that. The United States women's national team famously kickstarted the 2019 World Cup with a 13-0 shellacking that, ultimately, was a sign of things to come. Vietnam, unfortunately for them, were set up to be the USWNT's World Cup debut/warm-up this time around. Like Thailand, they wouldn't stand a chance, right?

They didn't, of course, as the USWNT ran away dominant winners. It wasn't, however, as dominant as it could have been, as the U.S. left goals on the table in what ended as merely a 3-0 victory.

That word feels harsh: 'merely'. You can't understate how important wins are, even if you are the USWNT. Vlatko Andonovski's side got off to a good start with a win in which they were never threatened. Let's not let that get buried here.

Still, you have to wonder if the U.S. may regret not doing more. Goal difference could be a factor in this group, one which features Portugal as will as their 2019 final opponent, the Netherlands. Winning the group is paramount, and doing so would have been just a bit easier if they had scored more.

Because of that, how you view this one will depend on whether you're an optimist or a pessimist. The optimist will see an easy win headlined by some breakout performances from the youngest USWNT stars. The pessimist will see a performance that needed just that little bit more to make this group stage feel comfortable.

We'll leave that up to you. Meanwhile, the USWNT will take the win and move on. The Netherlands are next on Wednesday night.

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GOAL breaks down the winners and losers from the USWNT's 3-0 win at Eden Park:

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