LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — Team USA sealed their trip to the World Cup Finals with a 2-1 win over England Tuesday.
Dozens of local soccer fans cheered the team on at the Las Vegas Lights FC's official watch party at Palace Station.
It was a hard-fought victory for Team USA with a controversial off-sides call forcing the return of an England goal (which would have tied the game, if it stood) and a late opportunity for England to tie the game with a penalty kick.
"I'm excited. They deserved it. That was a tough game," said one local fan, whose has attended several World Cup games in person.
The win today means a chance to win it all.
"I have chills right now just speaking of it," said Vegas native Veronica, who played soccer for 13 years.
That chance at a World Cup only comes once every four years - Team USA has brought home the championship three times, including in 2015. Las Vegas Lights FC Head Coach Eric Wynalda said the women's national team has been dominant for so long, fans aren't necessarily surprised to see them in the finals.
"We expect that now which is such a cool thing for our country to expect excellence and they've always provided that for us," said Wynalda.
Wynalda said the 11 women who make up Team USA aren't just incredible athletes, they're incredible people too - fighting for equal pay, advocating for issues they care about and representing the country on the world stage.
"When you get to that stage, when you put your hand on your heart with the whole world watching, it is an overwhelming moment," said Wynalda, who understands that moment firsthand, after being part of the national team for more than a decade.
"These women have been in this spotlight before. They can handle it. They embrace it and I think that's why they are the best in the world.," said Wynalda.
Team USA will have the opportunity to prove they are the best in the world once again as they take on either the Netherlands or Sweden in the World Cup Finals on Sunday.