If everything goes according to plan — and, as the numbers to come show, it almost certainly will — the USWNT will reach the milestone of 500 wins with a victory over Portugal on Thursday. Having only begun play in 1985, the program has reached the mark at a fiendish pace by rolling off wins at a remarkable clip — the USWNT boasts a win percentage of 84. That certainly puts the USWNT in the discussion for the winningest team in sports history.
If you’re curious as to how that compares to other sides in the women’s game, Germany — the two-time world champion — has registered 319 wins and 61 draws in 458 matches, giving it a win percentage of 76.3.
For a little bit of perspective, Brazil’s men’s national team — the five-time winners of the World Cup — has recorded 606 wins dating back to 1914, although the Seleção’s win percentage of 73.5 tells you everything about its historical dominance of the men’s game.
The USMNT, on the other hand, has slogged its way to 293 wins since 1916, although the win total still surpasses 245 defeats. The men boast a win percentage of 53.4
The U.S. women are simply unmatched in world soccer. Looking at the big four European domestic leagues, no club comes close to that win percentage. In England — beginning with the 1992-93 Premier League season — 13-time winner Manchester United has posted a dominating win percentage of 73.5
Going back to the foundations of the Bundesliga, LaLiga and Serie A, the most winningest clubs are Bayern Munich (70.3), Real Madrid (69.6) and Juventus (68.4).
And if you’d like to know how this all compares on a global sporting scale, here’s a ranking of some of the other winningest teams in all of sports.
The Winningest Team In Sports History
#1. Women's international soccer: USWNT
P: 638 W: 499 L: 65 D: 74
Win percentage: 84
#2. NCAA Women’s Div. 1 Basketball: Tennessee Volunteers
P: 1,630 W: 1,319 L: 311
Win percentage: 80.9
#3. Men's Rugby: New Zealand national rugby union team
P: 577 W: 447 L: 110 D: 20
Win percentage: 79.2
#4. NCAA Men’s Div. 1 Basketball: Kentucky Wildcats
P: 2,962 W: 2,263 L: 699
Win percentage: 76.4
#5. Men's international soccer: Brazil men’s national team
P: 958 W: 606 L: 155 D: 197
Win percentage: 73.5
#6. EPL: Manchester United*
P: 1,011 W: 635 L: 159 D: 217
Win percentage: 73.5
*beginning with the 92-93 EPL season.
#7. NCAA Div. 1 Football: Michigan Wolverines
P: 1,319 W: 943 L: 340 D: 36
Win percentage: 72.9
#8. Bundesliga: Bayern Munich
P: 1,816 W: 1,076 L: 339 D: 401
Win percentage: 70.3
#9. LaLiga: Real Madrid
P: 2,811 W: 1,674 L: 575 D: 564
Win percentage: 69.6
#10. Serie A: Juventus
P: 2,901 W: 1,587 L: 519 D: 795
Win percentage: 68.4
#11. NBA: San Antonio Spurs
P: 3,396 W: 2,114 L: 1,282
Win percentage: 62.2
#12. NHL: Montreal Canadiens
P: 6,578 W: 3,374 L: 2,220 T: 837 OTL: 147
Points percentage: 58.8
(Shout out to the Las Vegas Knights, who posted a points percentage of 66.5 in their first-ever season.)
#13. NFL: Dallas Cowboys
P: 882 W: 502 L: 374 D: 6
Win percentage: 57.3
#14. MLB: New York Yankees
P: 18,112 W: 10,258 L: 7,766 D: 88
Win percentage: 56.9
*Draws count as half a win
And we’d be liars if we didn’t mention the record of the United States men’s national basketball team. The perennial “Dream Team” has won 96.5 percent of its games at the Olympics, and it also boasts a win percentage of 88.6 in all major competitions. The U.S. men's basketball team is in a league of its own as a winningest team in sports history.
Watch the USWNT (hopefully) record its 500th win on Thursday, Nov. 8, at 1 p.m. ET on ESPN2. The women then play first-time World Cup qualifier Scotland on Nov. 13 at St Mirren Park to finish the 2018 schedule.