The USA has competed in the Nordic Cup for the last 14 years, which is held in Northern Europe every summer, during which time it has become the focus of the USA’s oldest Youth National Team.
After winning its first Nordic Cup in 1997 (over Norway), the USA has won an amazing nine out of the last 11 Nordic Cups including seven in a row from 1999-2005, before falling in 2006 in the championship game to Germany. The U.S. recaptured the title last year under Irwin, pounding Germany, 4-0, in the title game. The USA won the last Nordic Cup contested in Sweden in 2004, defeating Norway, 4-1, in the final.
The Nordic Cup features eight teams and two groups followed by placement matches. The USA was drawn into Group B, where it will face Switzerland, England and Norway. Group A features host Sweden, Germany, Finland the full National Team of Scotland.
The American women open play against Switzerland on July 15 in Borlange before taking on England on July 17 in Borlange. The team will finished group play against Norway on July 19 in Famas. The placement matches are on July 21. All the matches are near Falun, which is 120 miles northwest of Stockholm.
Irwin’s roster features six players who helped the USA win last year’s Nordic Cup in Finland, led by defender Becky Sauerbrunn and midfielder Tina DiMartino, both of whom earned caps for the full National Team at the Four Nations Tournament in China last January. Midfielder India Trotter, who spent the first six months of this year training with the full WNT, and midfielder Yael Averbuch, both have two caps for the senior side.
“We have players who have won the Nordic Cup and played in Youth World Championships,” said Irwin. “We’ve had some excellent international matches this year leading into this tournament and some success against European teams, but we will look to the experienced players to lead this team in Sweden. We are expecting mature and consistent performances from our team with four matches in seven days.”
Irwin’s squad has gone 4-1-1 in international matches in 2008, all against European countries.
Sauerbrunn, Averbuch, midfielder Meghan Schnur and forward Kerri Hanks, who won the Hermann Trophy in 2006 at Notre Dame, played for the USA at the 2004 FIFA U-19 Women’s World Cup in Thailand. Hanks also played for the U.S. team that won the 2002 FIFA U-19 Women’s World Cup in Canada. DiMartino, goalkeeper Val Henderson and defender Nikki Krzysik played for the USA at the 2006 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup in Russia. Henderson was named to the FIFA All-Star Team in that tournament.
Seven players on the roster have previous Nordic Cup experience, led by goalkeeper Cori Alexander, who will be attending her third consecutive Nordic Cup. Forward Kiki Bosio, who scored twice in last year’s Nordic Cup, is one of five additional players who were in Finland last year. The group also includes DiMartino, Krzysik, Sauerbrunn and forward Ella Masar.
The youngest player selected is 18-year-old midfielder Katy Frierson who will attend Auburn as a freshman this fall.
Many current full Women’s National Team players have participated in the Nordic Cup. At last year’s tournament were defender Rachel Buehler, a member of the USA’s 2008 Olympic Team, and defender Ali Krieger, who was named as alternate to the Olympic Team.
“As always, playing with the U-23s and traveling to the Nordic Cup is a chance for these players to show that they have the talent to make the jump to the full team,” said Irwin. “With the new pro league on the horizon, and the next Women’s World Cup three years away, this tournament is extremely valuable for these players. Some of them have seen time with the National Team but haven’t quite broken in. This is their chance to show that they can perform in a difficult tournament competition.”
Age eligible players for the 2008 Nordic Cup are those born on or after January 1, 1985.
Fourteen different colleges are represented on this year’s Nordic Cup roster, with UCLA and Virginia having two each while three players from Santa Clara made the squad.
2008 Nordic Cup Schedule - Sweden
July 15-21, 2008
Group A: Sweden, Scotland, Germany, Finland
Group B: USA, Switzerland, Norway, England
Tuesday, July 15
Group A: Sweden vs. Scotland
Group A: Germany vs. Finland
Group B: USA vs. Switzerland
Group B: Norway vs. England
Thursday, July 17
Group A: Finland vs. Sweden
Group A: Scotland vs. Germany
Group B: USA vs. England
Group B: Switzerland vs. Norway
Thursday, July 19
Group A: Sweden vs. Germany
Group A: Scotland vs. Finland
Group B: USA vs. Norway
Group B: England vs. Switzerland
Monday, July 21
7th Place Match
5th Place Match
3rd Place Match
U.S. UNDER-23 WOMEN’S NATIONAL TEAM
2008 NORDIC CUP ROSTER
|Abegg, Marissa||D||5-7||03/14/87||Lake Oswego, Ore.||Stanford||
|Alexander, Cori||GK||5-10||05/06/85||Martinez, Calif.||Portland||
|Averbuch, Yael||M||5-11||11/03/86||Upper Montclair, N.J.||UNC||
|Bosio, Kiki||F||5-7||11/03/87||Mission Viejo, Calif.||Santa Clara||
|DiMartino, Tina||M||5-3||01/06/86||Massapequa, N.Y.||UCLA||
|Frierson, Katy||M||5-5||04/08/90||Homewood, Ala.||Auburn||
|Hanks, Kerri||F||5-7||09/02/85||Allen, Texas||Notre Dame||
|Henderson, Val||GK||5-7||04/19/86||Orinda, Calif.||UCLA||
|Klein, Brittany||M||5-3||10/29/86||Arcadia, Calif.||Santa Clara||
|Krzysik, Nikki||D||5-7||05/23/87||Clifton, N.J.||Virginia||
|Larkin, Katie||F||5-5||03/19/87||Draper, Utah||BYU||
|Maser, Ella||F||5-5||04/03/86||Urbana, Ill.||Illinois||
|Moore, Kasey||D||5-8||08/03/87||Mission Viejo, Calif.||Texas||
|Quinn, Lorraine||M||5-2||08/14/86||Farmingdale, N.Y.||Duke||
|Reynolds, Katherine||D||5-8||09/14/87||Medina, Wash.||Santa Clara||
|Sauerbrunn, Becky||D||5-7||06/06/85||St. Louis, Mo.||Virginia||
|Schnur, Meghan||M||5-6||04/16/85||Storrs, Conn.||UConn||
|Trotter, India||M||5-8||03/10/85||Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.||Florida State||
U.S. U-23 Women’s National Team Roster By Position
GOALKEEPERS (2): Cori Alexander (Portland), Val Henderson (UCLA)
DEFENDERS (5): Marissa Abegg (Stanford), Nikki Krzysik (Virginia), Kasey Moore (Texas), Katherine Reynolds (Santa Clara), Becky Sauerbrunn (Virginia)
MIDFIELDERS (7): Yael Averbuch (UNC), Tina DiMartino (UCLA), Katy Frierson (Auburn), Brittany Klein (Santa Clara), Lorraine Quinn (Duke), Meghan Schnur (Uconn), India Trotter (Florida State)
FORWARDS (4): Kiki Bosio (Santa Clara), Kerri Hanks (Notre Dame), Katie Larkin (BYU), Ella Masar (Illinois)
CHICAGO (June 5, 2007) -- U.S. Under-21 Women’s National Team head coach Bill Irwin will bring 24 players to a training camp in Portland, Oregon, from June 6-13 in what will be the final camp before he chooses the 2007 U.S. Nordic Cup Team, which will travel to Vassa, Finland, from July 12-25 for the annual Nordic Cup tournament.
Held in Northern Europe every summer, the USA has competed in the tournament for well more than a decade, as it has become the focus of the USA’s oldest youth national team during its six-month run-up to the prestigious competition. In respond to FIFA moving oldest FIFA world championship for women from Under-19 to Under-20, this year the Nordic Cup moves from an Under-21 competition to an Under-23 tournament (it was staged as a U-20 event from 1990-1997) and Irwin will bring an 18-player roster featuring a mixture of U-21 and older players to Finland.
The USA has won eight Nordic Cup titles, including seven in a row before falling last year in the championship game to Germany. The USA won the last Nordic Cup contested in Finland in 2002, defeating Germany, 3-1 in the final.
While the Nordic Cup has long featured eight teams and three group games followed by a placement match, this year’s format calls for two group games and then a placement match, giving the USA little room for error in the first round to earn a berth to the title game, which will pit the winners of Group A, featuring England, Finland and Germany, and Group B, which will feature Norway, Sweden and the USA.
The American women open with Norway on July 18 in Närpiö, followed by the match against Sweden on July 22 in Vaasa. The placement matches are on July 24. All the matches are in and around Vassa on the west coast of Finland right on the Gulf of Bothnia.
Irwin’s Portland training camp roster features seven players who competed for the USA at the 2006 U-20 Women’s World Championship in Russia, and several other players with extensive youth National Team experience, including defenders Kendall Fletcher (14 U-21 caps), Manya Maksoki (19 U-21 caps) and Rachel Buehler (14 U-21 caps), and midfielder Sarah Huffman (22 U-21 caps), all of whom played on the USA’s 2002 U-19 team that won the first FIFA youth world championship.
“This roster is close to the team we will be taking to Finland, but there are several players not in camp that are in running and several players coming to Portland trying to show they deserve a spot on the final 18-player roster,” said Irwin. “We’ve had some good preparation this year with matches in England and Germany, as well as the tournament in Alabama, and this group is highly motivated to go to Europe and win back the Nordic Cup.”
Irwin has three attacking players who showed to be among the best in the world in their age group during their FIFA world championship experience.
Midfielder Angie Woznuk was one of the stars of the U.S. team that finished third in the 2004 FIFA U-19 Women’s World Championship in Thailand. She won the Silver Ball as the second most outstanding player and the Bronze Boot as the third leading scorer in the tournament. Forward Megan Rapinoe scored three times for the USA in Thailand and forward Danesha Adams won the Bronze Ball as the third most outstanding player at the 2006 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Championship in Russia. All three have a smattering of caps for the full Women’s National Team.
After winning its first Nordic Cup in 1997 (over Norway in Denmark), the USA has won an amazing eight out of the last 10 Nordic Cups, and seven in a row from 1999-2005. Age eligible players for the 2007 Nordic Cup are those born on or after January 1, 1984.
2007 Nordic Cup Schedule- Finland - July 18-24, 2007
Group A: Finland, England and Germany
Group B: USA, Norway and Sweden
Wednesday, July 18
Group A: Finland vs. England at Hietalahti Stadium, Vaasa
Group B: USA vs. Norway at Närpiö
Friday, July 20
Group A: England vs. Germany at Seinäjoki
Group B: Norway vs. Sweden at Vöyri
Sunday, July 22.
Group A: Germany vs. Finland at Lapua
Group B: Sweden vs. USA at Kaarle Stadium, Vaasa
Tuesday, July 24
Fifth Place Match at Sepänkylä
Third Place Match at Kaarle Stadium, Vaasa
Championship Match at Hietalahti Stadium, Vaasa
Head Coach: Bill Irwin Portland, Ore.
Asst. Coach: Dean Duerst Middleton, Wis.
GK Coach: Everton Edwards Miami, Fla.
GOALKEEPERS (3): Kelsey Davis (Portland), Joanna Haig (Louisville), Val Henderson (UCLA)
DEFENDERS (8): Marisa Abegg (Stanford), Rachel Buehler (Stanford), Kendall Fletcher (UNC), Nikki Krzysik (Virginia), Stephanie Logterman (Texas), Manya Makoski (Arizona State), Becky Sauerbrunn (Virginia), Sarah Wagenfuhr (Florida State)
MIDFIELDERS (8): Kiki Bosio (Santa Clara), Jen Buczkowski (Notre Dame), Sarah Huffman (Virginia), Kara Kabellis (Wisconsin), Ali Krieger (Penn State), Elisabeth Redmond (Duke), Lisa Sara (Portland), Angie Woznuk (Portland)
FORWARDS (5): Danesha Adams (UCLA), Kelsey Carpenter (Texas), Whitney Engen (UNC), Kerri Hanks (Notre Dame), Megan Rapinoe (Portland)
The U-21s are coming off a second place finish at the 2007 Futbol Internacional Tournament in Alabama, where they fell in penalty kicks to Canada in the championship game.
The U-21s will face Gutersloh on May 22, followed by a match against SG Essen-Schönebeck on May 24 and finish with a game against 07 Bad Neuenahr on May 26. The German women’s Bundesliga is widely hailed as one of the top two women’s leagues in the world, along with Sweden’s top division.
Irwin will bring a strong squad to Germany as 11 of the 18 players named have played in one or more youth world championships for the USA. Midfielder Angie Woznuk has one cap for the full National Team, the only player on the roster with senior team caps. Defender Rachel Buehler is currently in Residency Training Camp with the Women’s National Team, but will leave camp to play with the U-21s.
The U-21s will return home and the squad will have just a week before re-grouping in Portland, Ore., from June 6-13 for a training camp that will be the last preparation for the 2007 Nordic Cup to be held in Finland from July 18-24.
U.S. U-21 WNT Schedule
May 22 Gutersloh
May 24 Essen-Schonebeck
May 26 07 Bad Neuenahr
U.S. U-21 WNT Roster
GOALKEEPERS (2): Cori Alexander (Portland), Kelsey Davis (Portland);
DEFENDERS (6): Rachel Buehler (Stanford), Kendall Fletcher (UNC), Nikki Krzysik (Virginia), Stephanie Logterman (Texas), Manya Makoski (Arizona State), Becky Sauerbrunn (Virginia);
MIDFIELDERS (6): Natalie Capuano (Penn), Tina DiMartino (UCLA), Kara Karellis (Wisconsin), Ali Krieger (Penn State), Lisa Sari (Portland), Angie Woznuk (Portland);
FORWARDS (4): Natalie Budge (Portland), Kerri Hanks (Notre Dame), Ella Masar (Illinois), Jessica Rostedt (Virginia).
U-21 WNT Schedule
March 13 Blackburn Ladies
March 14 Everton Ladies
March 15 Leeds Ladies
U-21 WNT Roster
GOALKEEPERS (2): Kelsey Davis (Portland), Val Henderson (UCLA);
DEFENDERS (6): Jordan Angeli (Santa Clara), Marian Dalmy (Santa Clara), Nikki Krzysik (Virgina), Stephanie Logterman (Texas), Meghan Schnur (UConn), Brittany Taylor (UConn)
MIDFIELDERS (5): Brittany Bock (Notre Dame), Tina DiMartino (UCLA), Ali Krieger (Penn State), Amanda Poach (Santa Clara), Kylee Rossi (Tennesee)
FORWARDS (5): Amanda Cinalli (Notre Dame), Kerri Hanks (Notre Dame), Ella Masar (Illinois), Amy Rodriguez (USC), Michele Weissenhofer (Notre Dame)
Roster by Position
GOALKEEPERS (2): Joanna Haig (Louisville), Dianne Pfenniger (Texas)
DEFENDERS (7): Marissa Abegg (Stanford), Erin Hardy (UCLA), Nikki Krzysik (Virginia), Stephanie Logterman (Texas), Kasey Moore (Texas), Hillary Schwarzbach (Santa Clara), Sue Weber (Hofstra)
MIDFIELDERS (8): Brittany Bock (Notre Dame), Tina DiMartino (UCLA), Carly Dobratz (Washington State), Kara Kabellis (Wisconsin), Ali Krieger (Penn State), Lisa Sari (Portland), Meghan Schnur (UConn), Laura Robinson (Texas A&M)
FORWARDS (7): Kiki Bosio (Santa Clara), Kylie Rossi (Tennessee), Ella Masar (Illinois), Jessica Okorafo (Purdue), Rachel Rapinoe (Portland), Jessica Rostedt (Virginia), Michele Weissenhofer (Notre Dame)