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Paralympian Josh McKinney to be Honored at WNT Match

Longtime U.S. Paralympian Josh McKinney will be recognized at halftime of the U.S. Women’s National Team’s game against Switzerland on Wednesday at WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary, North Carolina.

McKinney announced in June that he would retire from his impressive career on the U.S. Paralympic National Soccer Team. McKinney represented the USA for 19 years, scoring 81 goals in 124 games.

“It’s been an honor to wear the crest and play for the U.S. for 19 years,” McKinney said during the USA’s trip to Barcelona, Spain, for the 7-a-Side Championship. “I will always be grateful for U.S. Soccer, my coaches and teammates, all who are family to me.”

McKinney wore the captain’s armband starting in 2005, and he played in three Paralympic Games.

On May 6, 2012, McKinney earned his 100th cap during the USA’s match against Russia in Yevpatoriya, Ukraine.

Rodriguez, Sauerbrunn Reflect on 2004 Trip to Thailand

The very first venture into big-time international soccer for U.S. Women's National Team players Becky Sauerbrunn and Amy Rodriguez turned into a bittersweet experience.

Their participation at the 2004 FIFA Under-19 Women's World Championship was quite sweet because of its exotic location – Thailand – and the competition opened the eyes of both teenagers to the demands of one the highest levels of international soccer.

It was bitter as well, because the Americans failed in their quest to win the championship and due to the damage and loss of life the great tsunami caused a month afterwards.

The team had discovered paradise in Phuket, Thailand.

"I loved my experience in Thailand," Rodriguez said. "It was one of the most beautiful places I have ever been. Actually, one of my favorite countries ever. Very exotic, very beautiful. It was gorgeous. It was amazing."

Amy Rodriguez and Becky Sauerbrunn

The team's first two group-stage games were in Phuket. The USA stayed at a beach hotel.

"We lucked out," Sauerbrunn said. "You look out your window and you're looking straight at the ocean. The first time I walked through the lobby I was like 'Oh my God. I had never seen this.' It was beautiful. I really wasn't expecting the turnout at the games, either. The Thai people really came out. We got 10,000 people for the opening matches and for a lot of us; we had never played in front of that kind of crowd before. The country did the tournament justice."

It might have been paradise, but the tournament was work for the WNT. The U.S. won its first four matches before running into a talented German side, losing them in the semifinals, 3-1. Germany would go on to win the tournament. The USA blanked Brazil and an 18-year-old Marta in the third-place match, 3-0.

Rodriguez said not winning "was quite disappointing," which only left the players hungry for more success.

"Most definitely," she said. "My goal, my ultimate career goal at this point is to win a World Cup. I'm hoping that I have a good year this year and I can make that World Cup team and hopefully get that World Cup gold that I haven't been able to get."

The tournament turned out to be a learning experience on several levels.

"It was a gut check," Sauerbrunn said. "It was kind of an expectation that we were going to win. For a lot of girls it was the first time, like, wow, we're not used to this. This is not a good feeling. What I carried on from the U-19s is that it doesn't matter how hard you prepare, what you're doing; you show up on that day, you take care of business."

Nikki Krzysik, Becky Sauerbrunn and Amy Rodriguez

Rodriguez remembered how fast the players and teams were.

"I was shocked as a 17-year-old playing against these great players," she said. "The speed of play was much quicker. I was still in high school at the time when I was brought in with the U-19s, so I learned to play a lot of faster and how to go against tough competition."

They also learned how fragile life and paradise can be. On Dec. 26, 2004, about month after the tournament final, a tsunami wreaked havoc in 15 countries. The Phuket hotel was destroyed. More than 230,000 people were killed, including almost 5,400 in Thailand.

"I felt very fortunate to be there when I did in such beauty and such an awesome experience, but it was sad to hear that it was destroyed by a giant tsunami," Rodriguez said.

Added Sauerbrunn "It just makes you put things into perspective a little bit about soccer. For us it's a passion, but it’s not an end-all, be-all of life. We were so sad about the people that we met, the hotel staff. We were still bummed about the tournament then it was kind of like well, there way worse things that can happen to us. We should be really fortunate for everything that we had."

Amy Rodriguez, Jen Redmond and Becky Sauerbrunn

U.S. Soccer to Offer VIP Experiences for International Friendly in Ireland

CHICAGO (Aug. 19, 2014) – U.S. Soccer is offering a special VIP Experience for the U.S. Men’s National Team’s international friendly on Nov. 18 in Dublin, Ireland.

VIP Experience guests enjoy the matches and the culture of the host countries as part of the U.S. Soccer Delegation, providing them with exclusive behind-the-scenes access and a unique travel opportunity.

There are two different packages available for the VIP Experience. U.S. Soccer will offer a four-day trip from Nov. 16-19 to watch the U.S. take on Ireland at Aviva Stadium in Dublin (the match is on Tuesday, Nov. 18). In addition, guests can also ask about an eight-day “Extended Tour” with U.S. Soccer, which includes an additional match in England. Space is limited in both packages

The Premium Package Includes:

  • Deluxe accommodations at the official U.S. Team Hotel and breakfast each morning
  • Premium match tickets
  • Tours to enjoy the best of local culture and history
  • Ground transportation to and from all scheduled activities, including airport arrival and departure
  • Behind-the-scenes access to a U.S. National Team training session
  • VIP Welcome Dinner
  • Premium U.S. Soccer gifts, and more

Round-trip international airfare is not included in the package, though guests will receive complimentary assistance with flight bookings using U.S. Soccer’s Travel Agency.

The USA holds a 2-4-2 record against Ireland in a series dating back to 1924. This is the first meeting between the two since April 17, 2002, in Dublin, where Ireland collected a 2-1 win. The match falls on an international fixture date, which means U.S. head coach Jurgen Klinsmann has the option to select any player he chooses for the match.

U.S. Soccer is a registered 501c3 non-profit. The minimum donation to enjoy the four-day VIP Experience is $5,395. A portion of your donation is tax deductible, and proceeds from these VIP Experiences will support important soccer development programs, including need-based scholarships for talented young players, high-performance national team programming and coaching instructors.

To reserve your VIP Experience tickets, contact U.S. Soccer today at vip@ussoccer.org.

Academy Alumni Update: Serna, Saad Power Long-Distance Strikes in MLS Play

Dillon Serna of the Colorado Rapids and Sporting Kansas City’s Soony Saad each tallied exceptional goals to highlight a big weekend for Development Academy alumni in Major League Soccer play and abroad.

Serna, formerly of the Rapids Academy system, scored on a running, left-footed strike from distance during the Rapids’ 4-2 loss to D.C. United on Sunday, Aug. 17.  His celebratory back flip also was equally impressive. Jared Watts, an alum of the Carolina Rapids, recorded the assist.

Serna’s tally is up for MLS Goal of the Week.

Saad, formerly of Vardar SC, corralled a corner kick and fired a right-footed shot through a crowded box and into the left corner of the net in Sporting Kansas City’s 3-1 win against Toronto FC on Saturday, Aug. 16. Saad also recorded an assist in the match. Jon Kempin, a homegrown Sporting Kansas City player, made his first MLS start in goal and came up with a fantastic save.

Zardes Continues Hot Streak: LA Galaxy Academy product Gyasi Zardes scored his ninth goal in his past 10 matches during the Galaxy’s 4-1 loss to the Columbus Crew. His 49th-minute tally was a one-timer from the middle of the box off of a Dan Gargan cross. Zardes’ shot into the right corner of the goal now gives him 10 tallies on the season.

Bruin Scores in Dynamo Victory: Will Bruin scored his ninth goal of the season to give the Houston Dynamo a 1-0 lead against the Philadelphia Union in the 51st minute, a match the Dynamo would go on to win 2-0. Bruin, a St. Louis Scott Gallagher Missouri alum, ran down the middle of the field as teammate Giles Barnes dribbled down the left side and got behind the defense. Barnes cross found Bruin in front of the goal at point-blank range, and Bruin one-touched the cross home.

Hamid, Kemp Shine in D.C. United Win:  D.C. United homegrown product Bill Hamid made a diving save from a close-range shot to help D.C. United preserve a 4-2 victory against the Colorado Rapids. Real Colorado alum Taylor Kemp contributed to D.C. United’s offensive outburst with two assists.

Speas Helps Crew to Four-Goal Performance: Crew Soccer Academy alum Ben Speas scored the third of four Columbus goals against the LA Galaxy to help hand the Galaxy its worst loss of the season. Speas’ left-footed shot from the left side of the box netted him his first goal of the 2014 season and second of his career. 

U.S. WNT Faces Switzerland for First Time on Aug. 20 at WakeMed Soccer Park

U.S. Women’s National Team vs. Switzerland
WakeMed Soccer Park; Cary, North Carolina
Aug. 20, 2014

U.S. WNT FACES SWITZERLAND FOR FIRST TIME: The U.S. Women’s National Team will face Switzerland for the first time in its history when the two teams square off on Aug. 20 at WakeMed Soccer Park in a match that sold out its 10,000 tickets on July 25. The match kicks off at 7:30 p.m. ET and will be shown on ussoccer.com. Fans can also follow on Twitter @ussoccer_wnt. The USA is 7-2-3 so far in 2014 and will be playing its third match under head coach Jill Ellis since she was officially been named to the position.

SWISS, THEN SEMIS: With just two days of training prior to the match, U.S. head coach Jill Ellis has called up just 19 players for this match and will choose 18 for the game-day roster. Eighteen of the 19 players are currently playing in the NWSL (only rising college senior Morgan Brian is not a professional) and 10 players are on clubs that will enter the 2014 National Women’s Soccer League Semifinals this coming weekend when FC Kansas City hosts Portland Thorns FC on Aug. 23 (1 p.m. ET, ESPN2)and Seattle Reign FC takes on the Washington Spirit on Aug. 24 (11 p.m. ET, ESPN2). The USA will have two more international friendly matches before CONCACAF Women’s World Cup qualifying takes place in the United States in October. The USA faces Mexico on Sept. 13 at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, Utah, and on Sept. 18 at Sahlen’s Stadium in Rochester, New York.

2014 U.S. WNT SCHEDULE:

Date

Opponent

Result/Time (ET)

U.S. Goal Scorers/TV

Venue

Jan. 31

Canada

1-0 W

Leroux

Toyota Stadium; Frisco, Texas

Feb. 8

Russia

7-0 W

Lloyd (2), Press (2), O’Reilly,

Leroux, Wambach

FAU Stadium; Boca Raton, Fla.

Feb. 13

Russia

8-0 W

Own Goal (2), Rodriguez, Wambach, Brian, Holiday, Leroux, Press

Georgia Dome; Atlanta, Ga.

March 5

Japan*

1-1 T

Leroux

Parchal, Portugal

March 7

Sweden*

0-1 L

-

Albufeira, Portugal

March 10

Denmark*

3-5 L

Press, Leroux, Rapinoe

Albufeira, Portugal

March 12

Korea DPR*

3-0 W

Wambach (2), O’Reilly

Parchal, Portugal

April 6

China PR

2-0 W

Holiday, Rapinoe

Dick’s Sporting Goods Park; Commerce City, Colo.

April 10

China PR

3-0 W

Lloyd (2), Leroux

Qualcomm Stadium; San Diego, Calif.

May 8

Canada

1-1 T

Leroux

Investors Group Field; Winnipeg, Canada

June 14

France

1-0 W

Leroux

Raymond James Stadium, Tampa, Fla.

June 19

France

2-2 T

Morgan (2)

Rentschter Field, East Hartford, Conn.

Aug. 20

Switzerland

7:30 p.m.

WakeMed Soccer Park, Cary, N.C.

Sept. 13

Mexico

6:30 p.m.

TBD

Sept. 18

Mexico

7 p.m.

Sahlen’s Stadium, Rochester, N.Y.

* Algarve Cup

#SOLO72: U.S. goalkeeper Hope Solo, who has earned 71 shutouts in her 152 caps since debuting for the USA in 2000, needs just one more clean sheet to surpass Briana Scurry’s record, set over 173 caps from 1994-2008. Eleven of Solo’s shutouts have come in world championship play – five in the FIFA Women’s World Cup and six during the Olympics. As a confirmation of her reputation as a big-game player, 42 of Solo’s career shutouts – almost 60 percent – have come in tournament competitions that include world championships, qualifying for the World Cup and Olympics and elite tournaments such as the Algarve Cup, which is held annually in Portugal.

USA TO HOST WOMEN’S WORLD CUP QUALIFYING: The 2014 CONCACAF Women’s Championship, which will qualify three teams for the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup, will be played from Oct. 15-26 in four host cities in the United States: Chicago, Kansas City, Philadelphia and Washington, D.C. The tournament features eight countries divided into two groups of four with the top two finishers in each group after round-robin play moving on to the semifinals. All the countries, including the U.S. Women’s National Team, will play one match in each of the three first-round venues. Sporting Park in Kansas City, Kansas; Toyota Park in Bridgeview, Illinois; and RFK Stadium in Washington, D.C., will each host two doubleheaders, one each for Groups A and B. PPL Park in Chester, Pennsylvania, near Philadelphia, will host the semifinal matches on Oct. 24, along with the third-place match and championship games on Oct. 26. The two finalists and the winner of the third-place match will qualify directly for the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Canada. The fourth-place team will enter a playoff with a South American country for a final berth. The Final Draw for the tournament will be held Sept. 5 in Miami.

U.S. ROSTER BREAKDOWN: The USA’s 19-player roster features two goalkeepers, six defenders, six midfielders and five forwards. Of the USA’s 19 players, just four are over 30: team captain Christie Rampone (39 years old), Abby Wambach (34), Hope Solo (33) and Carli Lloyd (32). Rampone heads into the game with 294 career caps as she is the most-capped active player in the world and second all-time in world history. The least-capped players on the roster are: Alyssa Naeher (0), Julie Johnston (2) and Allie Long (3). Naeher was brought in to replace Ashlyn Harris, who suffered a concussion in NWSL play on Aug. 2 and will need a few more days of rest and recovery.

U.S. Women’s National Team By Position – Detailed Roster
GOALKEEPERS (2): 18-Alyssa Naeher (Boston Breakers), 1-Hope Solo (Seattle Reign FC)
DEFENDERS (6): 19-Crystal Dunn (Washington Spirit), 16-Julie Johnston (Chicago Red Stars), 25-Meghan Klingenberg (Houston Dash), 11-Ali Krieger (Washington Spirit), 3-Christie Rampone (Sky Blue FC), 4-Becky Sauerbrunn (FC Kansas City)
MIDFIELDERS (6): 7-Morgan Brian (Virginia), 12-Lauren Holiday (FC Kansas City), 10-Carli Lloyd (WNY Flash), 6-Allie Long (Portland Thorns FC), 9-Heather O’Reilly (Boston Breakers), 15-Megan Rapinoe (Seattle Reign FC)
FORWARDS (5): 2-Sydney Leroux (Seattle Reign FC), 13-Alex Morgan (Portland Thorns FC), 23-Christen Press (Chicago Red Stars), 8-Amy Rodriguez (FC Kansas City), 20-Abby Wambach (WNY Flash)

WORLD RECORD AND COUNTING: U.S. forward Abby Wambach currently has 167 goals in her career after scoring twice against Korea DPR in the final match of the Algarve Cup in March. Wambach passed the legendary Mia Hamm to become the world’s all-time leading scorer on June 20, 2013, when she pounded in four goals against South Korea at Red Bull Arena. Hamm had 158 international goals from 1987-2004. The match against North Korea at the Algarve Cup marked the 107th win for the USA in a game in which Wambach has scored at least one goal (107-2-8). Wambach has scored 42 goals in her past 53 games over 2012, 2013 and 2014. She is also third all-time in assists with 65, behind only Kristine Lilly (105) and Hamm (144). Wambach missed the two matches against France in June due to a knee injury suffered in NWSL play.

MORGAN BAGS TWO IN RETURN: Alex Morgan returned to the U.S. team in June for the two matches against France and her second half appearance on June 14 in Tampa was her first time since November of 2013, an absence of almost seven months. Morgan came on in the second half against France in East Hartford, Connecticut, and scored two excellent goals to pull out the 2-2 draw, her first scores since June 2, 2012, when she scored twice against Canada in Toronto for a 3-0 U.S. victory. She now has 46 goals (10th all-time) in her 79 caps.

COMING BACK TO CARY: The U.S. Women will be playing their sixth match all-time in Cary. This is a region long known for women’s soccer excellence, and the largest crowd will be on hand Wednesday for the first sellout at WakeMed. The U.S. roster includes four players who played their college soccer at the North Carolina: defenders Meghan Klingenberg and Crystal Dunn and midfielders Allie Long and Heather O’Reilly, who scored her first career WNT goal here on Oct. 6, 2002, against Italy. The USA has won all five previous matches at WakeMed Soccer Park, four by shutout and a wild 3-2 victory against Australia in 2008 that was played in a driving rainstorm and featured a last-minute game-winner from Carli Lloyd. The U.S. Women have previously played 11 matches in North Carolina – five in Cary, two in Charlotte, three in Davidson and one in Greensboro.

SEVEN IN, 17 TO GO: With Switzerland winning European Group 3 with one match to play, and with the completion of the 2014 Asian Women’s Cup, the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup now has seven teams. Along with host Canada, Japan, Australia, China PR, Korea Republic and Thailand have qualified out of Asia. Japan defeated Australia 1-0 in the championship game while China defeated Korea 2-1 to take third. Perhaps the biggest news was the qualification of Thailand to its first Women’s World Cup. Thailand defeated host Vietnam 2-1 for fifth place and became the first team to wholly benefit from the expansion of the tournament to 24 teams. The remaining 17 countries will come from Europe (8 total: Switzerland plus 7 more, up from 4.5 + host in 2011), Africa (3, up for 2), CONCACAF (3.5 + host, up from 2.5) South America (2.5, up from 2) and Oceania (1, same as in 2011). The fourth-place finisher in CONCACAF will play the third-place finisher in South America in a two-game playoff for the final berth.

U.S. ROSTER NOTES:

  • Twenty-eight players have seen game action for the USA so far in 2014, including first-cappers Samantha Mewis, Sarah Hagan and Allie Long.
  • Lauren Holiday, the 2013 NWSL MVP, became the 30th American female player to earn 100 caps when she played against Canada on May 8.
  • Abby Wambach is the USA’s top scorer on the roster with 167 goals, and after Wambach, midfielder Carli Lloyd is the top scorer with 50 career international goals, followed by Alex Morgan (46) and Heather O’Reilly (40). Sydney Leroux is quickly climbing the charts with 31. Amy Rodriguez, who is having an excellent NWSL season with 13 goals, good for second in the league, has 27 international scores to match Shannon Boxx and Joy Fawcett for 18th on the all-time list.
  • Leroux is the USA’s leading scorer this year with seven goals. Wambach, Lloyd and Christen Press have four goals each. Lloyd also has four assists, best on the team this year, while Press also has one assist this year and has scored 12 times in her first 24 WNT games.
  • Julie Johnston gets her third consecutive call-up after a fine season with the Chicago Red Stars. She had not been with the WNT since the February matches against Russia and will be looking for her first international minutes of the year and her third cap.
  • Midfielder Allie Long earns her third call-up after getting her first cap on May 8 against Canada, coming on for Morgan Brian in the 68th minute. Long played in the 2006 FIFA Under-20 Women’s World Cup in Russia with current WNT players Tobin Heath, Kelley O’Hara, Stephanie Cox, Holiday and Rodriguez. Long started both games against France, playing 90 minutes in the first game and 60 in the second.
  • Due to NWSL games, players from Kansas City, Washington, Sky Blue, Chicago and Western New York arrived on Sunday, Aug. 17, while players from Seattle, Portland, Houston and Boston arrived on Monday, Aug. 18.
  • All nine NWSL clubs are represented on the roster.

IN THE RECORD BOOKS:

  • Hope Solo is currently tied with Briana Scurry for all-time shutouts with 71, and her next clean sheet would set a WNT record.
  • The USA’s current 84-game unbeaten streak at home (73-0-11 since Nov. 6, 2004) is a team record. The next-highest streak is 50 games (48-0-2) from Feb. 10, 1996, through April 22, 1999. The USA tied the record on May 14, 2011 (2-0 win against Japan at Columbus Crew Stadium) and broke the record with the 51st game on May 18, 2011 (another 2-0 win against Japan at WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary, North Carolina).
  • Heather O’Reilly is the ninth player to hit 200 caps in U.S. history after reaching the milestone against Korea DPR on March 12 and with 203 has now moved past Kate Markgraf (201) into eighth on the USA’s all-time list.
  • O’Reilly has moved ahead of Tiffeny Milbrett for seventh all-time with 206 caps in her career.
  • O’Reilly is the second-youngest player to hit 200 caps for the USA. Kristine Lilly was 28 years old, 9 months, 15 days when she earned cap No. 200 on May 7, 2000. O’Reilly was 29 years old, 2 months, 10 days when she earned her 200th cap.
  • O’Reilly is currently tied for sixth all-time in assists with Shannon MacMillan with 50.
  • In addition to breaking Mia Hamm’s world scoring record, Abby Wambach’s June 20, 2013, performance against the Korea Republic also made her the USA’s all-time leader in multiple-goal games with 39 for her career. She has since added another on March 12 against Korea DPR and sits at 40. She has 33 two-goal games, five hat tricks, one four-goal game and one five-goal game.
  • With her next assist or goal, Wambach will join Hamm as the only WNT players to reach 400 points in their career. Wambach has 399 points (167 goals, 65 assists) and Hamm had 460 (158 goals, 144 assists).
  • Carli Lloyd’s goal on Oct. 27 against New Zealand gave her 46 goals in her career and moved her past Julie Foudy into ninth on the all-time scoring list. Lloyd scored her first two of the year against Russia on Feb. 8 and added another two-goal game on April 10 against China PR to become the ninth player in U.S. history to score 50 or more goals. Lloyd is also the highest-scoring player in U.S. history who has played exclusively as a midfielder.
  • In the Jan. 31 match against Canada, defender Becky Sauerbrunn became the 46th player in U.S. Women’s National Team history to hit 50 caps. She now has 61, which ranks her tied for 41st all-time.
  • On April 10 against China PR, Sydney Leroux became the 47th player to hit 50 caps. She now has 53 and ranks 45th all-time.
  • Defender Christie Rampone is second all-time with 294 caps, trailing only Lilly (352 caps from 1987-2010).
  • With four more goals, Alex Morgan would become the 10th player in U.S. history to score 50 or more goals.

BY THE NUMBERS:

  • 0.83: Goals per game the USA has allowed in 2014
  • 1: USA’s FIFA ranking
  • 2.67: Goals per game the USA has scored in 2014
  • 3: Number of players who have played in all 12 games so far this year: O’Reilly, Press and Sauerbrunn
  • 4: Assists by Carli Lloyd and Christen Press in 2014, most on the team
  • 10: Number of U.S. players to score a goal in 2014
  • 12: Goals in 24 career games for U.S. forward Christen Press
  • 50: Career goals by Carli Lloyd, most ever for a WNT player who has played exclusively as a midfielder
  • 71: Career shutouts by Hope Solo, tied for the all-time WNT record with Briana Scurry
  • 99: Minutes on field per goal averaged by Abby Wambach in her career
  • 107: U.S. victories when Wambach scores a goal (107-2-8 overall)
  • 130: Minutes on field per goal averaged by Mia Hamm in her career
  • 294: Caps by Christie Rampone, second all-time to Kristine Lilly (352)

JILL ELLIS FACT FILE : After her second stint as interim head coach for the U.S. Women’s National Team, a capacity in which she coached two games this year – a win against China PR and a tie against Canada – Jill Ellis was officially named the eighth head coach of the U.S. WNT on May 16. After coaching the final seven games of 2012 when she compiled a 5-0-2 record, Ellis officially started the job with a 6-0-2 record and is now 7-0-3. Ellis has stepped away from her job as Development Director for the U.S. Women’s National Teams, a job she was appointed to in January of 2011, but will still work closely with U.S. Women’s National Team Technical Director April Heinrichs to oversee the USA’s youth teams.

  • Ellis has extensive experience in the U.S. Women’s National Team programs having served as an assistant coach for the U.S. Women’s National Team under Pia Sundhage, helping the team to a gold medal at the 2008 Olympics. She has served two stints as head coach of the U.S. Under-20 Women’s National Team, guiding the squad to the CONCACAF title in 2010 and to the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup in Germany.
  • Ellis also had two stints as the head coach of the U.S. Under-21 Women’s National Team, the second starting in the middle of 2005, after which she guided the team to the Nordic Cup in Sweden. She also coached the U-21s to the Nordic Cup title in Germany in 2000.
  • Ellis was a scout for the USA at the 2000 Olympics in Sydney, Australia, and has served as an assistant coach with the U.S. U-21s and U.S. U-16 Girls’ National Teams.
  • Ellis joined U.S. Soccer full-time after a highly successful 12-year run as the head women’s soccer coach for the UCLA Bruins. Ellis led UCLA to eight NCAA Final Fours, including seven in a row from 2003-2009, and won six straight conference titles from 2003-2008. She finished her time in Westwood with a record of 229-45-14. Ellis, who was also head coach at the University of Illinois, has an all-time collegiate coaching record of 248-63-14.
  • She was the 2000 NSCAA National Coach of the Year after leading the Bruins to the NCAA Final in just her second season as head coach.
  • Ellis arrived in Westwood after heading the University of Illinois women's soccer program for two years. In 1998, she brought the Fighting Illini to a 12-8 record and a first-ever Big Ten Tournament berth. Prior to coaching at Illinois, Ellis served as an assistant coach at the University of Virginia for one year (1996-97), at Maryland for three years (1994-96) and at North Carolina State for another three years (1988-90). As an assistant coach at North Carolina State, Ellis helped the Wolfpack secure the 1988 ACC title and an NCAA Final Four appearance.
  • A forward during her playing days at the College of William & Mary from 1984-87, Ellis was a Third-Team All-American in 1987. In 1984, Ellis helped Braddock Road in Virginia to the Under-19 club national championship.
  • Ellis grew up in Portsmouth, England, and came to the United States in 1981 at the age of 15. She also lived in Singapore for two years while her father helped to develop a national soccer program in that country. She earned her B.A. in English Literature and Composition from the College of William & Mary in 1988 and currently resides in Los Angeles. She has a USSF “A” coaching license.

IN FOCUS: SWITZERLAND
Schweizerischer Fussballverband
Founded: 1895 (Joined FIFA in 1904)
Head Coach: Martina Voss-Tecklenburg
FIFA World Ranking: 19
FIFA World Cups: 2015 will be first participation
Best FIFA World Cup Finish: None

Switzerland Women's National Team Roster By Position
GOALKEEPERS (2): 1-Thalmann Gaëlle (MSV Duisburg), 12-Senia Michel (FF USV Jena)
DEFENDERS (5): 2-Nicole Remund (FC Zürich Frauen), 5-Noëlle Maritz (VfL Wolfsburg), 6-Selina Kuster (FC Zürich Frauen), 14-Rahel Kiwic (MSV Duisburg), 15- Caroline Abbé (FC Bayern München)
MIDFIELDERS (6): 7-Martina Moser (TSG 1899 Hoffenheim), 8-Sandy Maendly (Hellas Verona), 9-Lia Wälti (FFC Turbine Potsdam), 16-Fabienne Humm (FC Zürich Frauen), 18-Vanessa Bürki (FC Bayern München), 22-Vanessa Bernauer (VfL Wolfsburg)
FORWARDS (5): 10-Ramona Bachmann (FC Rosengard), 11-Lara Dickenmann (FC Olympique Lyonnais), 13-Ana Maria Crnogorcevic (FFC Frankfurt), 19-Eseosa Aigbogun (FC Basel 1893), 23-Fabienne Bangerter (SC Freiburg)

SWITZERLAND ROSTER NOTES

  • Switzerland will be the 25th European country that the USA has faced in its history, although several of those countries no longer exist.
  • Lara Dickenmann, who plays for France power Olympic Lyon and played college soccer at Ohio State (where she was the Big Ten Conference Freshman of the Year in 2004), leads Switzerland in Women’s World Cup qualifying with 10 goals. She also played for the New Jersey Wildcats and Jersey Sky Blue during her time in college.
  • Fabienne Humm has scored eight times for Switzerland in qualifying, as has former Women’s Professional Soccer player Ramona Bachmann, who played for the Atlanta Beat. Ana Maria Crnogorčević, who plays for Frankfurt in Germany, has six goals in qualifying.
  • Switzerland’s coach is former Germany international Martina Voss-Tecklenburg who played more than 100 matches for her country and played in the 1991, 1995 and 1999 FIFA Women’s World Cups as well as the 1996 Olympics.

USA VS. SWITZERLAND:

  • While the teams have not met at the senior level, they did meet in group play at the 2010 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup in Germany, a 5-0 win for the USA in which Sydney Leroux scored a hat trick.

LAST TIME
On the field for the USA:
June 19, 2014 – Rentschler Field; East Hartford, Conn.

USA    2    Morgan 56, 85
FRA    2    Necib 27; Henry 68

Lineups:
USA: 24-Ashlyn Harris; 11-Ali Krieger, 4-Becky Sauerbrunn, 6-Whitney Engen (3-Christie Rampone, 46), 25-Meghan Klingenberg (5-Kelley O’Hara, 79); 15-Allie Long (17-Tobin Heath, 60), 10-Carli Lloyd (capt.), 12-Lauren Holiday; 9-Heather O’Reilly (13-Alex Morgan, 46), 2-Sydney Leroux (8-Amy Rodriguez, 79), 23-Christen Press
Subs Not Used: 7-Morgan Brian, 18-Nicole Barnhart
Head Coach: Jill Ellis

FRA: 16-Sarah Bouhaddi; 8-Jessica Houara, 2-Wendy Renard, 4-Laura Goerges, 24-Julie Soyer; 6-Amandine Henry, 15-Elise Bussaglia, 14-Louisa Necib, 12- Elodie Thomis; 9-Eugenie Le Sommer (10-Camille Abily, 84), 17-Gaetane Thiney (18-Marie Laure Delie, 89)
Subs Not Used: 1-Celine Deville, 3-Laure Boulleau, 5-Sabrina Delannoy, 7-Viviane Asseyi, 11-Laetitia Tonazzi, 13-Pauline Crammer, 19-Marina Makanza, 20-Anaig Butel, 21-Laetitia Phiippe, 22-Amel Hamraoui, 23-Kheria Hamraoui, 25-Ines Jurena
Head Coach: Philippe Bergeroo

U.S. U-14 GNT Comes Together in Orlando for Second Camp of 2014

CHICAGO (August 18, 2014)U.S. Under-14 Girls’ National Team head coach April Kater has called up 36 players for the second U.S. Under-14 Girls’ National Team training camp of the year which will run from August 23-30 in Orlando, Fla.

All the players invited were born in 2000 or 2001. The U-14 GNT is scheduled for one more training camp this year in November which should also feature 36 players.

U.S. U-14 Girls’ National Team Roster by Position:

GOALKEEPERS (4): Katherine Asman (Concorde Fire; Roswell, Ga.), Mattison Interian (Arsenal; Pasadena, Calif.), Alyssa Minnick (Premier Soccer Club; Baltimore, Md.) Madison Murphy (FC Stars of Massachusetts; South Grafton, Mass.);
DEFENDERS (11): Addison Clark (Minnesota Thunder Academy; Plymouth, Minn.), Isabella Cook (Chicago Magic; Elmhurst, Ill.), Chai Cortez (Surf Hawaii; Wailuku, Hawaii), Sierra Enge (Carlsbad United; Cardiff, Calif.), Naomi Girma (Central Valley Crossfire; San Jose, Calif.), Emily Gray (Penn Fusion; Sewell, N.J.), Karlina Sample (Solar Chelsea; Frisco, Texas), Kailey Smith (West Coast FC; Lake Forest, Calif.), Skylar Smith (So Cal Blues; Coto De Caza, Calif.), Jillian Wachira (PDA; Plainsboro, N.J.), Kennedy Wesley (So Cal Blues; Rossmoor, Calif.);
MIDFIELDERS (10): Croix Bethune (Concorde Fire; Alpharetta, Ga.), Luisa Delgado Heinz (Real So Cal; Manhattan Beach, Calif.), Hannah Gallegos (Rio Rapids SC; Albuquerque, N.M.), Madison Mercado (San Diego Surf; San Diego, Calif.), Alexandra Palangi (Santa Barbara SC; Arrayo Grande, Calif.), Brianna Pinto (CASL; Durham, N.C.), Mackenzie Pluck (FC Bucks; North Wales, Pa.), Jordan Taylor (Ohio Premier; Wadsworth, Ohio), Summer Yates (Pac NW; Pasco, Wash.), Sakura Yoshida (Crossfire United; Redmond, Wash.);
FORWARDS (11): Olufolasade Adamolekun (Lonestar SC; Spicewood, Texas), Erin Hohnstein (Colorado Rush; Broomfield, Colo.), Rebecca Jarrett (World Class F.C.; Washington Township, N.J.), Nikki Lee (De Anza Force; Hillsborough, Calif.), Catiana Lychywek (Solar Chelsea Elite; Plano, Texas), Amelia Paternoster (Gunners; Wall, N.J.), Nicole Payne (Concorde Fire; Birmingham, Ala.), Allison Schlegel (Colorado Storm; Parker, Colo.), Sophia Smith (Real Colorado; Fort Collins, Colo.), Hollyn Torres (FC Dallas Youth Premier; Frisco, Texas), Audrey Weiss (Colorado Rush; Greenwood Village, Colo.)

 

Alyssa Naeher Replaces Ashlyn Harris on U.S. WNT Roster for Switzerland Match on Aug. 20

CHICAGO (Aug. 18, 2014) – Goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher has replaced Ashlyn Harris on the U.S. U.S. Women’s National Team roster that will face Switzerland on Aug. 20 in front of a sold-out crowd at WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary, North Carolina.

Harris suffered a concussion playing with the Washington Spirit on Aug. 2. While she was expected to be fully recovered in time for the Switzerland match, the U.S. Soccer and Washington Spirit medical staffs determined she will need a few more days of rest and recovery.

Naeher, who is uncapped, has made 102 saves this season for the Boston Breakers (by far the league leader) and was named the National Women’s Soccer League Player of the Week for her stellar performance in her team’s 2-0 victory against Portland Thorns FC on Aug. 10.

U.S. Women’s National Team Roster by Position
GOALKEEPERS (2): Alyssa Naeher (Boston Breakers), Hope Solo (Seattle Reign FC)
DEFENDERS (6): Crystal Dunn (Washington Spirit), Julie Johnston (Chicago Red Stars), Meghan Klingenberg (Houston Dash), Ali Krieger (Washington Spirit), Christie Rampone (Sky Blue FC), Becky Sauerbrunn (FC Kansas City)
MIDFIELDERS (6): Morgan Brian (Virginia), Lauren Holiday (FC Kansas City), Carli Lloyd (WNY Flash), Allie Long (Portland Thorns FC), Heather O’Reilly (Boston Breakers), Megan Rapinoe (Seattle Reign FC)
FORWARDS (5): Sydney Leroux (Seattle Reign FC), Alex Morgan (Portland Thorns FC), Christen Press (Chicago Red Stars), Amy Rodriguez (FC Kansas City), Abby Wambach (WNY Flash)

U.S. U-20 WNT Falls 3-1 in PKs to Korea DPR at 2014 FIFA U-20 Women's World Cup

TORONTO, Canada (Aug. 16, 2014) – The U.S. Under-20 Women’s National Team saw its 2014 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup come to a close this evening at the National Soccer Stadium after falling in penalty kicks to Korea DPR. The USA and Korea DPR were tied 1-1 through regulation and overtime, but North Korea ultimately prevailed with a 3-1 shootout victory to advance to the semifinals.

Korea DPR goalkeeper Kim Chol Ok saved three of the USA’s four penalty kicks, and Rim Se Ok’s penalty served as the winner to push North Korea into the semifinals against either Nigeria or New Zealand on Wednesday.

Makenzy Doniak scored the USA’s goal in regulation for her first goal in the tournament and second international tally at the U-20 level.

The USA had its chances to find a game-winning goal in regulation and overtime. Some of the better opportunities included a Mallory Pugh volley over the crossbar in the 69th minute, and two Lindsey Horan free kicks that hit the North Korea wall in the 83rd and 105th minutes.

“I’m just proud of the way that they fought and battled and played with an American spirit,” U.S. U-20 WNT head coach Michelle French said. “Hats off to a very skilled North Korea team, who were exceptional in the things they wanted to do to be successful.”

The U.S. and Korea DPR also needed overtime to decide the quarterfinal winner of the 2012 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup. The USA’s Chioma Ubogagu scored a 98th-minute winner to lift the USA to a 2-1 victory against North Korea to advance to that tournament’s semifinal stage and eventually the title.

Goal Scoring Rundown:
USA – Makenzy Doniak (unassisted), 6th minute: The U.S. had a vigorous opening 15 minutes against Korea DPR and started off on the right foot with Doniak’s first goal of the tournament. Mallory Pugh built up the attack down the right side and crossed into the box to Doniak. Her initial shot was blocked by Korea DPR defender Choe Yun Gyong, but Doniak got her own rebound and tucked it underneath Korea DPR goalkeeper Kim Chol Ok for the lead. USA 1, PRK 0

PRK – Jon So Yon (penalty), 54th minute: The USA had an unfortunate giveaway from midfield and Korea DPR took advantage. Ri Hyang Sim and Jon Ryon Hwa quickly pushed into the attack, and Kim Mi Gyong played a dangerous cross that was out of the reach of U.S. goalkeeper Katelyn Rowland for an interception. North Korea’s Ri Un Sim collected and shot, and the ball deflected off of the left arm of Stephanie Amack. Amack was issued a yellow card and defender Jon So Yon took the subsequent penalty kick. Her left-footed attempt was read well by Rowland, who anticipated correctly to her left, but the shot tipped her glove and went into the right side of the frame. USA 1, PRK 1

Penalty Kick Summary:
USA: The U.S. started first, and Savannah Jordan, Lindsey Horan and Rose Lavelle, the team’s first three shooters, each saw their attempts saved by Korea DPR goalkeeper Kim Chol Ok. She anticipated correctly on all three attempts. Amack kept her team alive with a confident shot to the lower left to cut it to 2-1, but North Korea would win on its next attempt.
PRK: After Jon So Yon gave North Korea the 1-0 lead, Rowland stopped Choe Yun Gyong’s attempt, guessing correctly to her right for the save. However, North Korea converted its next two attempts from Ri Kyong Hyang and then Rim Se Ok for the winner.

Key Saves and Defensive Stops:
USA – Katelyn Rowland, 76th through 79th minutes: Neither goalkeeper made a highlight reel-type save, but in terms of coming up in a big spot, Katelyn Rowland had to make three straight saves against Ri Un Sim in a short time frame. The first North Korea attack came from the left side at the edge of the six-yard box and Rowland made the stop in the 76th minute. Then in the 78th minute, Ri Un Sim was back at it with a header that went straight to Rowland. The Korea DPR forward had one more crack with a left-footed shot from outside the box, but again Rowland was positioned correctly and made the stop.

PRK – Kim Chol Ok, 102nd minute: U.S. second-half sub Summer Green generated the USA’s best attempt in the first 15-minute overtime with a 28-yard strike. The well-struck shot, however, went to North Korea goalkeeper Kim Chol Ok for her first save of the match.

USA – Katelyn Rowland, 110th minute: Most of North Korea’s crosses had some lift to them, but this time around Korea DPR’s Ri Kyong Hyang dished a low ball from the left, trying to find her teammate Kim So Hyang at the edge of the six-yard box. It was a dangerous moment for the U.S. defense, but USA goalkeeper Katelyn Rowland quickly left her line and broke up the play.

Additional Notes:

  • The USA is now 11-1-1 in international competition this year, with Saturday’s game recorded as a draw because the two sides were even through regulation and overtime.
  • The U.S. U-20s have allowed only five goals in international play this year, outscoring their opponents 45-5.
  • U.S. U-20 WNT head coach Michelle French made only one starting lineup change following the team’s group finale against China PR.
  • Goalkeeper Katelyn Rowland made her fourth straight start in goal. The defense featured right back Stephanie Amack, left back Christina Gibbons and center backs Katie Naughton and Cari Roccaro. Roccaro wore the captain’s armband.
  • The midfield of the 4-3-3 also remained unchanged with Rose Lavelle, Andi Sullivan and Lindsey Horan.
  • The USA’s front line included Makenzy Doniak, Mallory Pugh and the return of Margaret “Midge” Purce to the starting lineup. Against China PR, Savannah Jordan had earned the start.
  • Summer Green came off the bench for a fourth straight U-20 World Cup match, replacing Purce in the 75th minute.
  • In the 83rd minute, Taylor Racioppi entered the match for Pugh.
  • The USA’s third and final substitution came in the first 15-minute overtime session. Savannah Jordan replaced Doniak in the 105th minute.

-U.S. Under-20 Women’s National Team Match Report-

Match: U.S. U-20 Women’s National Team vs. Korea DPR
Date: Aug. 16, 2014
Competition: 2014 FIFA Under-20 Women’s World Cup – Quarterfinal
Venue: National Soccer Stadium; Toronto, Canada
Kickoff: 5 p.m. ET
Attendance: 7,854
Weather: 71 degrees – cloudy, light rain

Scoring Summary: 1      2    OT 1 OT 2 PK  F
USA                        1      0      0      0      1      1 (1)
PRK                        0      1      0      0      3      1 (3)

USA – Makenzy Doniak                6th minute
PRK – Jon So Yon (penalty kick)  54

Penalty Summary:
PRK: Jon So Yon (goal), Choe Yun Gyong (saved), Ri Kyong Hyang (goal), Rim Se Ok (goal)
USA: Savannah Jordan (saved), Lindsey Horan (saved), Rose Lavelle (saved), Stephanie Amack (goal)

Lineups:
USA: 1-Katelyn Rowland; 16-Stephanie Amack, 3-Cari Roccaro (capt.), 20-Katie Naughton, 2-Christina Gibbons; 5-Rose Lavelle, 17-Andi Sullivan, 10-Lindsey Horan; 9-Makenzy Doniak (7-Savannah Jordan, 105), 15-Margaret Purce (8-Summer Green, 75), 12-Mallory Pugh (6-Taylor Racioppi, 83)
Subs Not Used: 4-Brittany Basinger, 11-Rachel Hill, 13-Carlyn Baldwin, 14-Nickolette Driesse, 18-Jane Campbell, 19-Kaleigh Riehl, 21-Rose Chandler
Head Coach: Michelle French

PRK: 1-Kim Chol Ok; 2-Song Kyong Hui, 3-Choe Sol Gyong (capt.), 16-Ri Un Yong, 12-Jon So Yon; 7-Choe Yun Gyong, 9-Ri Hyang Sim, 17-Choe Un Hwa, 13-Kim Mi Gyong (8-Rim Se Ok, 86); 10-Ri Un Sim (20-Kim So Hyang, 96), 15-Jo Ryon Hwa (19-Ri Kyong Hyang, 70)
Subs Not Used: 4-Choe Yong Mi, 5-Kang Ok Gum, 6-Kim Hyang Mi, 11-Kim Phyong Hwa, 14-Ri Kum Suk, 18-Rim Yong Hwa, 21-Jang Yong Sim
Head Coach: Hwang Yong Bong

Stats Summary: USA / PRK
Shots: 11 / 14
Shots on Goal: 5 / 7
Saves: 6 / 3
Corner Kicks: 0 / 2
Fouls: 13 / 12
Offside: 3 / 3

Misconduct Summary:
USA – Stephanie Amack (caution)  53rd minute
PRK – Ri Un Yong                         82
PRK – Jon So Yon                         90+2
PRK – Choe Sol Gyong                 105+2

Officials:
Referee: Bibiana Steinhaus (GER)
Assistant Referee 1: Katrin Rafalski (GER)
Assistant Referee 2: Marina Wozniak (GER)
Fourth Official: Finau Vulivuli (FIJ)

ussoccer.com Woman of the Match: Cari Roccaro

Two-Time U.S. Paralympian Jon McCullough Passes Away

CHICAGO (Aug. 16, 2014) – Jon McCullough, chairman of U.S. Soccer’s Athlete Council and a longtime leader and volunteer in the Olympic and Paralympic movements, passed away after succumbing to cancer.

“We are deeply saddened by the news of Jon McCullough’s passing,” U.S. Soccer President Sunil Gulati said. “Jon lived his life with the embodiment of team spirit, always willing to give everything he could for the good of the sport and his community. The U.S. Soccer and Paralympic communities have lost a great advocate and an even better person. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family during this difficult time.”

McCullough represented the U.S. Paralympic Team in the 1996 and 2004 Paralympics as a defender. He was a member of the USA squad for 12 years, also playing in the 1998 World All-Star Game in Brazil, three ParaPan American Games and three World Championships.

McCullough’s on-field passion for soccer filtered off the field as he served in a variety of leadership and volunteer roles in the Olympics and Paralympics. He was a member and chair of the U.S. Olympic Committee’s Athletes Advisory Council, a chairman of U.S. Soccer’s Athlete Council and a member of the U.S. Soccer Board of Directors. McCullough also served on the International Paralympic Committees Athlete Council and the USOC’s Paralympic Advisory Committee.

At the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa, McCullough was a keynote speaker for the Man-Up Summit, a weeklong gathering of 150 international delegates seeking to develop domestic initiatives to halt violence against women and girls, using sport and music as tools. Also in South Africa, McCullough was a facilitator for FIFA’s youth initiative Football for Hope.

Most recently, McCullough served as the executive director at BlazeSports America, based in Decatur, Georgia. BlazeSports provides all children and adults with physical disabilities the chance to play sports and live healthy and active lives.

McCullough was a decorated disabled veteran of the U.S. Coast Guard and held an undergraduate dual degree in international environmental health from The American University in Washington, D.C.

Coffee Talk with Makenzy and Gibby

U.S. U-20 WNT forward Makenzy Doniak sits down for a chat with teammate and defender Christina Gibbons, a Raleigh, N.C. product who has earned her first two caps at the 2014 FIFA Women’s World Cup, putting in fine performances at left back against Brazil and China PR.

Results

Date Matchup Result Venue Attendance Goal Scorers
June 8, 2012 MNT vs Antigua & Barbuda 3-1 W Raymond James Stadium; Tampa, Fla. 23,971 Bocanegra, Dempsey, Gomez
June 12, 2012 MNT vs Guatemala 1-1 D Estadio Mateo Flores; Guatemala City, Guatemala 18,000 Dempsey
September 7, 2012 MNT vs Jamaica 2-1 W National Stadium; Kingston, Jamaica 24,000 Dempsey
September 11, 2012 MNT vs Jamaica 1-0 W Columbus Crew Stadium; Columbus, Ohio 23,881 Gomez
October 12, 2012 MNT vs Antigua & Barbuda 2-1 W Sir Vivian Richards Stadium; North Sound, Antigua 7,000 Johnson(2)
October 16, 2012 MNT vs Guatemala 3-1 W Sporting Park; Kansas City, Kan. 16,947 Bocanegra, Dempsey(2)
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