USWNT World Cup goal scorer Sophia Smith’s Cardinals connection

Jul 21, 2023, 7:10 PM | Updated: 8:26 pm

Sophia Smith scored the opening goal for the U.S. Women’s National Team at the 2023 FIFA World Cup after her boyfriend, Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Michael Wilson, sent her off with a heartfelt message.

Smith started at forward for Team USA at her first World Cup after playing college ball at Stanford, where Wilson made a name for himself on the football field.

Ahead of the game, Smith read the message from Wilson in a video posted by the National Women’s Soccer League, of which Smith won the 2022 league MVP.

“You were born for this moment, and I am excited the entire world is going to see who you are and the grace you succeed with,” Smith read aloud, saying the message made her very happy.

Smith finished with her left foot after a flick by Alex Morgan to give the U.S. a 1-0 lead in the opening 15 minutes against Vietnam in Aukland, New Zealand.

She scored again before halftime from just inside the box after a deflection by the Vietnamese goalkeeper.

She donned the No. 9 at Stanford where she was a NCAA Champion and became the No. 1 overall pick in the 2020 NWSL Draft by the Portland Thorns.

Smith was with the Cardinal for the 2018 and 2019 seasons.

Wilson played at Stanford from 2018-22, becoming a team captain and fourth-round pick by the Cardinals during the 2023 draft.

The connection between the USWNT and Cardinals runs even deeper, as Team USA defender Julie Ertz is married to Cardinals tight end Zach Ertz.

The U.S. won its first game, 3-0.

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