Naeher saves SheBelieves title for USA in shootout. GETTY IMAGES

Goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher was the hero as the United States defeated Canada in a shootout, making three saves and converting one to win their seventh SheBelieves title in the history

Goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher once again played a key role as the United States defeated Canada on penalty kicks to win the SheBelieves Cup for the fifth consecutive year. The United States clinched their seventh SheBelieves Cup title by defeating Canada 5-4 on penalty kicks in the final on Tuesday in Columbus, Ohio, USA.

In a match very similar to last month's CONCACAF Gold Cup semi-final, where the USA also beat Canada on penalties, the North Americans secured the title after a 2-2 draw following 90 minutes of regulation and extra time. 

The USA looked to be on course for victory in the 90 minutes after two second-half goals from Sophia Smith had put the hosts 2-1 ahead after Adriana León had opened the scoring for Canada.

The Canadians had a late chance when veteran defender Crystal Dunn fouled León in the box in the 84th minute and referee Crystal Sobers pointed to the spot, where León stepped up to score the equaliser.

The defending Olympic champions took an early 2-0 lead into the shootout after Jessie Fleming and Leon scored on either side of a Trinity Rodman miss, but Smith's penalty made it 2-1 and Naeher then saved from Jade Rose and Cloe Lacasse before converting her own penalty to put the Americans in control.

Lindsey Horan's penalty made it 3-2, but Canada's Julia Grosso equalised to make it 3-3. Emily Sonnett then had a chance to seal victory, but the American midfielder sent her penalty kick over the bar to send the match into sudden death.

Naeher saved from Canadian substitute Evelyne Viens and Emily Fox scored the winning penalty for the Americans, who will be looking to improve on their bronze medal performance at Tokyo 2020.

The match was the final under interim USA coach Twila Kilgore, who will make way for Chelsea's Emma Hayes at the end of the year ahead of the Paris Olympics, which will run from 25 July to 10 August.