CHICAGO (Nov. 24, 2015) – The 2015 Women’s World Cup champions will conclude their Victory Tour with four matches in December. The WNT will take on Trinidad &Tobago on Dec. 6 at Aloha Stadium in Honolulu (3 p.m. local/8 p.m. ET on FOX Sports 1/FOX Sports GO) and Dec. 10 at the Alamodome in San Antonio (8 p.m. CT on ESPN2/WatchESPN), before finishing one of the most successful years in program history with matches against China PR on Dec. 13 at the University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona (5 p.m. MT on ESPN2/WatchESPN), and Dec. 16 at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans (7 p.m. CT on FOX Sports 1/FOX Sports GO).
The match in New Orleans will be the final game for retiring U.S. forward Abby Wambach, who is the world’s all-time leading international scorer with 184 career goals in 252 caps.
“It has been a fantastic and thrilling year and we are looking forward to ending it on a high note, and especially honoring Abby and her legendary career in New Orleans,” said U.S. head coach Jill Ellis. “T&T and China are very competitive teams and once again we’ll look to these games to continue the process of preparing for Olympic Qualifying, especially now that we know our path during the qualifying tournament in February.”
With the retirements of Lauren Holiday, Shannon Boxx and Lori Chalupny, who all played their final WNT matches in October, twenty players from the Women’s World Cup roster will be at all the venues. Ellis has once again added 2015 NWSL MVP and leading scorer Crystal Dunn to the roster. Dunn has scored three goals and added three assists for the USA while starting the last four matches of the Victory Tour.
Ellis has also called in seven additional players who will train with the U.S. team during the trip and are available to play in the matches.
Tickets for all of the December matches are on sale at ussoccer.com.
U.S. Women’s National Team Roster by Position
GOALKEEPERS (3): Ashlyn Harris (Orlando Pride), Alyssa Naeher (Chicago Red Stars), Hope Solo (Seattle Reign FC)
DEFENDERS (10): Crystal Dunn (Washington Spirit), Whitney Engen (Boston Breakers), Jaelene Hinkle (Western NY Flash), Julie Johnston (Chicago Red Stars), Meghan Klingenberg (Portland Thorns FC), Ali Krieger (Washington Spirit), Kelley O’Hara (Sky Blue FC), Christie Rampone (Sky Blue FC), Becky Sauerbrunn (FC Kansas City), Emily Sonnett (Univ. of Virginia)
MIDFIELDERS (8): Morgan Brian (Houston Dash), Danielle Colaprico (Chicago Red Stars), Tobin Heath (Portland Thorns FC), Rose Lavelle (Wisconsin), Carli Lloyd (Houston Dash), Samantha Mewis (Western NY Flash), Heather O’Reilly (FC Kansas City), Megan Rapinoe (Seattle Reign FC)
FORWARDS (7): Lindsey Horan (PSG), Sydney Leroux (Western NY Flash), Stephanie McCaffrey (Boston Breakers), Alex Morgan (Orlando Pride), Christen Press (Chicago Red Stars), Amy Rodriguez (FC Kansas City), Abby Wambach (unattached)
- Of the eight players named to the roster who were not members of the 2015 Women’s World Cup winning team, two are getting their first call-ups: Danielle Colaprico, the NWSL Rookie of the Year and a midfielder from the Chicago Red Stars, and Rose Lavelle, a junior midfielder at Wisconsin, who was one of the top players for the USA at the 2014 Under-20 Women’s World Cup. Colaprico is 22 years-old and Lavelle is 20.
- In addition, Ellis gave second call-ups to defenders Jaelene Hinkle and Emily Sonnett, as well as forward Stephanie McCaffrey, all of whom are 22 years old and earned their first caps in October in matches against Brazil. McCaffrey also scored her first international goal, bagging the fourth and final score in stoppage time of the 4-1 win against the Brazilians on Oct. 25 in Orlando, Fla.
- Should the University of Virginia advance to the NCAA College Cup, Sonnett, who is a senior for the Cavaliers, would not join the U.S. squad until the match in San Antonio.
- Rounding out the younger players on the roster are forward Lindsey Horan, who is currently playing in France for Paris Saint-Germain and earned her third cap on October 25 vs. Brazil, and Western New York midfielder Samantha Mewis, who earned her fourth cap against Brazil on Oct. 21. The 21-year-old Horan will not be with the team in Hawaii due to club commitments, but will join the squad for the final three games.
- The match in Honolulu on the island of Oahu marks the first trip for the U.S. Women to the 50th state and the first international match hosted by U.S. Soccer in Hawaii.
- It will also be only the second soccer match between national teams staged at Aloha Stadium. The Philippines defeated Chinese Taipei 1-0 at the venue in 1976 in a match that was a part of a triple-header that also featured the Hawaii All-Stars against the San Diego Jaws (which played one season in the NASL) and the New York Cosmos against Team Honda from Japan, a match that featured four goals from Pelé.
- Hawaii will be the 32nd U.S. state (not including the District of Columbia) in which the American women have played since the program’s inception in 1985.
- The U.S. WNT has played T&T eight times in its history, most recently a 1-0 victory during group play of the qualifying tournament for the 2015 Women’s World Cup. Abby Wambach’s goal in the 54th minute was the difference. Five of the eight games have been in CONCACAF qualifying competitions.
- The U.S. Women have played 12 matches all-time in the state of Texas, including two visits to San Antonio. The USA played at the Alamodome in October of 2013, a 4-0 victory against Australia. The USA also played a pre-Olympic warm-up match in San Antonio in 1996 at Blossom Field, a 3-0 win vs. Sweden.
- The USA will be making its third visit to University of Phoenix Stadium, home to the NFL’s Arizona Cardinals, after playing there in November of 2011 (1-1 tie with Sweden) and December of 2012 (2-0 win vs. Ireland).
- The match in Glendale marks a homecoming for U.S. defender Julie Johnston, who was named to the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup All-Star Team. She hails from nearby Mesa, Ariz.
- China has been one of the most frequent opponents in U.S. history. The U.S. has played China 54 times, more than any country besides Canada.
- Since 1991 - a span of 24 years - the U.S. and China have failed to play a match in a calendar year only five times.
- The USA is 33-8-13 all-time vs. China.
- The USA’s most recent meeting with China came in the quarterfinal at the 2015 Women’s World Cup – a 1-0 win by the USA in Ottawa, Canada, on a goal from Carli Lloyd.
- The U.S. Women have played in New Orleans just once before. That match took place in 2003 at Tad Gormley Stadium. This one will be the first for the U.S. Women at the famed Superdome, home to the NFL’s New Orleans Saints.
- ussoccer.com –
CHICAGO (Oct. 19, 2015) – U.S. Women’s National Team players Carli Lloyd, Hope Solo and Megan Rapinoe were among the 10 players included on the shortlist for the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Player of the Year. WNT head coach Jill Ellis was also included on the 10-person list of finalists for the 2015 World Coach of the Year for women’s soccer.
The final decisions for the winners will be made by the captains and head coaches of the world’s women’s national teams as well as international media representatives selected by FIFA. The voting period for the awards begins on Oct. 26 and closes on Nov. 20, 2015. The three finalists for both awards will be announced on November 30 with the winners announced on January 11, 2016, at the annual FIFA Ballon d’Or Gala in Zurich.
After winning the World Cup, Lloyd, Solo and Rapinoe were each named to the FIFA Women’s World Cup All-Star squad. Lloyd earned Golden Ball honors as the tournament’s best player while scoring six goals, all in the knockout rounds, including a historic hat trick in the Women’s World Cup Final. She also won the Silver Boot as the tournament’s second leading scorer.
Solo was in goal for every minute of all seven games and earned five shutouts while playing a key role in back-stopping a stellar U.S. defense that shut out opponents for 539 minutes during the tournament. She made key stops throughout the tournament, including several spectacular saves in the USA’s 3-1 opening game win against Australia.
Rapinoe played and started in six games of the tournament, scoring two goals (both against Australia in the Group D opener) and also tallied two assists, including one in the World Cup Final.
The lists of the ten players and ten coaches were selected by experts from FIFA’s Committee for Women’s Football and the FIFA Women’s World Cup as well as a group of experts from France Football.
2015 FIFA Women’s World Player of the Year Short List:
Nadine Angerer (Germany/Brisbane Roar/Portland Thorns), Ramona Bachmann (Switzerland/FC Rosengård), Kadeisha Buchanan (Canada/West Virginia University), Amandine Henry (France/Olympique Lyonnais), Eugénie Le Sommer (France/Olympique Lyonnais), Carli Lloyd (USA/Houston Dash), Aya Miyama (Japan/Okayama Yunogo Belle), Megan Rapinoe (USA/Seattle Reign), Célia Šašić (Germany/1.FFC Frankfurt), Hope Solo (USA/Seattle Reign)
2015 FIFA World Coach of the Year for Women’s Soccer Short List:
Calle Barrling (Sweden/Swedish U-19 national team), Colin Bell (England/1.FFC Frankfurt), Farid Benstiti (France/Paris Saint-Germain), Jill Ellis (USA/USA national team), Laura Harvey (England/Seattle Reign), John Herdman (England/Canadian national team), Gérard Prêcheur (France/Olympique Lyonnais), Mark Sampson (Wales/English national team), Norio Sasaki (Japan/Japanese national team), Thomas Wörle (Germany/FC Bayern Munich)
Growing up in rural Palo Cedro, near Redding, California, Megan Rapinoe was one of six kids. “My family is really important to me,” says the outgoing U.S. winger many have come to know as simply, Pinoe. “There’s a ton of us - so many different personalities – everyone has their own thing going on, so much of it going on.”
Megan and her twin sister Rachael were the youngest, and they had a Tom Sawyer-like childhood. They roamed the land, climbing the giant oak tree, fishing for crawfish in the creek, playing one-on-one basketball or baseball or soccer on the neighboring fields, playing house in the chicken coop. “It’s like a little penned-in area, with a little house. It was disgusting –it was a chicken coop – but you could kind of get in there and we loved it.”
Denise, Rapinoe’s mom, relied on her “wicker whistle” to call the sisters home. “Whenever she wanted us to come inside, she’d put her pinkies in her mouth – it was so loud, you could just hear it forever. That was our call home.” That whistle still comes in handy today. At Megan’s games with big crowds, Denise will whip out the pinkies, and Megan follows the sound to find her family in the stands.
Rapinoe brings to the game a creative, free-flowing, improvised quality – a quality that may have grown out of the childhood where she was given a lot of freedom to roam.
Her country upbringing also shaped her playing experiences. After one year playing State ODP, the family scrapped it, as it was just too far away. Even club practices were a three-hour trek, which often meant the two sisters just stayed at home and played themselves. When they were playing with their club team, Elk Grove United, creativity was the emphasis, “My coach never told us what to do. He always gave us a lot of freedom and wanted us to try things.”
FROM CHICKEN COOPS TO GLOBE TROTTINGThe kid who grew up playing in the chicken coop has now lived in cities all over the world, from Lyon, France to Portland, Oregon. In Lyon, playing for Olympique Lyonnais, she visited museums and opera houses, walked cobblestone streets, raced her Smart Car against the men’s teams Ferarris and Maserrattis. In Seattle, she lived on Capitol Hill, which she describes as “gay-friendly, straight-friendly, trans-friendly, everything friendly,” a place “where you never had to think about [sexuality] ever, which is really important to me.” Pinoe says, “I’ve loved living in different places. I like having that experience.” Yet the continent-hopping lifestyle of a National Team soccer player means she also gravitates toward having a place to call home. Now playing for the Seattle Reign, she lives a little south of the city– close enough to enjoy the perks, but far enough away to have a little of the space she enjoyed so much as a kid.
U.S. National Team: One of the USA’s most skillful attackers and goal scorers, she (and her hair) gained instant fame for sending in the cross that Abby Wambach headed home in the dying seconds of extra time against Brazil in the 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup quarterfinal … Her two-goal performance in the epic semifinal match of the 2012 Olympics further cemented her star status.
2015: 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup Champion... Named to the 2015 U.S. FIFA Women's World Cup roster, her second World Cup selection... Has played in 12 games so far for the U.S. Women this year and started 10... Scored two goals and tallied an assist in the three Group Stage games... Captained the USA during its 3-0 victory over Ireland on May 10 in San Jose, California... Earned her 100th cap with the WNT on April 4, when she started against New Zealand in the USA's 4-0 win in St. Louis, becoming the 31st woman in WNT history to achieve the century mark... Provided the assist on Lori Chalupny's goal during the win against New Zealand, the 30th assist of her career... Made her first start of the year at the Algarve Cup and played in two more games during the tournament after missing the opening matches against France on Feb. 8 and England on Feb. 13 with a knee injury suffered during January camp... Came in as a second-half sub during the U.S.'s 2-0 victory over France on March 11 to earn her 99th cap and help the WNT's to its 10th Algarve Cup title ... 2014: Played in 21 games for the USA, starting 16 and logging in 1,253 minutes … Scored six goals and had seven assists … Scored against Switzerland, Mexico, China and Denmark in the Algarve Cup; against Guatemala in the CONCACAF Women’s Championship, and against Brazil in the Brasilia International Tournament to close out the year … Helped the U.S. win the 2014 CONCACAF Women’s Championship and book its ticket to the 2015 FIFA World Cup … Was one of four players to play and start all five matches of the tournament… 2013: Played 614 minutes in just seven games, mostly due to club commitments in France, but still scored four goals with three assists … Scored against Scotland, China, Germany and New Zealand … Assisted, off a corner kick, on Abby Wambach’s 159th career goal that broke Mia Hamm’s world all-time international scoring record on June 20 against Korea Republic at Red Bull Arena … In 2013 she became the 34th player in U.S. WNT history to play 75 or more matches … 2012:Had her best year to date for the U.S. WNT, playing 1,649 minutes in 29 games while starting 20, the highest yearly totals of her career … Scored eight goals with 12 assists, also career highs … Her 12 assists were third highest on the team … Started all six games of the 2012 Olympics, her first Olympic tournament, while scoring three goals with four assists … Her four assists at the Olympics were tied for tops on the team … One of her assists came on Carli Lloyd’s game-winning goal in the 2-1 Olympic gold medal game victory against Japan … Scored the game-winning goal against Colombia in group play and also scored two spectacular goals against Canada in the Olympic semifinal, twice drawing the USA even in a match it would win 4-3 in the final minute of extra time of overtime … Her first goal against Canada came directly off a corner kick and the second was a brilliant strike from outside the penalty area … Played in four games at CONCACAF Olympic Qualifying, starting one and had one goal and one assist … Was on the short list for the FIFA Women’s World Player of the Year and finished 10th in the final voting … 2011: Played in 18 games, starting 13, and scored three goals with five assists over her 1,085 minutes … Was a starter for most of the year, but became a reserve just before the Women’s World Cup, where she played her role extremely well coming off the bench, getting one goal with three assists … Played in all six games in the World Cup, starting the group match against Sweden and the World Cup Final … Her three assists came in the final three games of the World Cup, crossing the ball that was famously headed home by Abby in the quarterfinal against Brazil, setting up Alex Morgan’s game-clinching goal in the semifinal victory against France and Morgan’s score in the World Cup Final against Japan … Also scored against England and Japan during the year … 2010: Recovered from illness to work her way back into the U.S. lineup, starting eight of the 10 games she played … Scored four goals with two assists, one of which came in the second leg of the Women’s World Cup playoff series against Italy that set up Amy Rodriguez’s game-winning goal … Started both games in the playoff series … Scored against Sweden and China, and twice against Guatemala at the CONCACAF Women’s World Cup Qualifying tournament, in which she played three games … 2009: Made a big impact in her return to the WNT for the first time in two years, playing in seven games and starting six while scoring two goals with one assist … Scored against Norway in the Algarve Cup in a 1-0 victory and also added a goal against Canada in Toronto … 2007-08: Did not play for the USA as she recovered from two ACL injuries … 2006: Trained with team at 2006 Residency Training Camp in Carson, Calif. … Came into training with the USA early in 2006 and played in four matches, scoring her first two career goals against Chinese Taipei on Oct. 1, but returned to her college team and suffered an ACL injury just four days later … Youth National Teams: Was one of the standout players on the U.S. team that finished third at the 2004 FIFA U-19 Women’s World Championship in Thailand … She had an excellent tournament, scoring three goals, tied for the team lead, including one in the third-place match victory against Brazil … Ended her U-19 international career with 21 caps and nine goals … First camp with the U-19 WNT was in January of 2003 in Chula Vista, Calif. … Played in three matches at the 2004 CONCACAF U-19 Qualifying tournament, scoring three goals … Scored her first goal with the U-19s against Mexico on March 1, 2003 … Scored against Canada in 6-1 victory on May 27, 2003 … Traveled with U-19s on European tour to Netherlands and Germany in July of 2003 … Played in USYSA International Tournament in Houston in May of 2003 … Played with the U-16 GNT in 2002 and traveled with the U-16s to France and Houston … First Appearance: July 23, 2006, vs. Ireland ... First Goal: Oct. 1, 2006, vs. Chinese Taipei (two goals).
Professional / Club – 2014: Despite only playing nine games for the Reign, she scored four goals and recorded one assist as Seattle went on to win the NWSL regular season title with a 16-2-6 overall record … Scored the sole goal for the Reign in the 86th minute of the 2-1 loss to FC Kansas City in the NSWL Championship Game … 2013: Signed with two-time European Champions League winners Lyon for the second half of the French league season and played in six games while scoring twice … Played in five UEFA Champions League matches for Lyon, scoring two goals, against Rosengård and Juvisy … Helped Lyon reach the 2013 UEFA Women’s Champions League Final where she started and played 46 minutes as her team fell 2-1 to German club Wolfsburg … Allocated to the Seattle Reign for the inaugural NWSL season but did not join the team until late June after the end of her French season with Lyon … Ended up playing 1,023 minutes in 12 games, starting 11 and scored five goals with one assist … Her impact on the Reign was such that despite playing only half the season, she was named to the NWSL Second XI … Finished second in the NWSL in shots with 65 and shots on goal (27) despite playing at least six games less than the other leaders ... 2011: Signed with the Philadelphia Independence for the 2011 WPS season after the Chicago Red Stars ceased operations but was traded to magicJack in exchange for cash considerations on June 22 during the Women’s World Cup … Ended up playing 10 WPS matches, starting six, with two goals and two assists over 641 minutes … Played all 90 minutes of magicJack’s two playoff matches, scoring in the quarterfinal victory against Boston … 2010: Struggled with illness and fitness, but played in 20 games, starting 19 and scoring one goal on the last touch of the last game of the season … 2009: Taken second overall in the first round of the 2009 WPS College Draft by the Chicago Red Stars … Started 17 of the 18 games she played for the Red Stars, scoring two goals with three assists … Was named as a WPS First-Team All-Star … Youth club: She played with the Mavericks from U-12 to U-14, then played with Elk Grove United until she went to college … Won State and Regional Champions with Elk Grove United in 2003 … National runner-up in 2003.