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Ellis Names U.S. WNT Roster for 2015 Algarve Cup

CHICAGO (Feb. 21, 2015) – U.S. Women’s National Team head coach Jill Ellis has named a 25-player roster that will travel to the 2015 Algarve Cup in Portugal. It will be the USA’s 20th trip to the Algarve Cup. Before the competition begins, Ellis will name 23 players to the tournament roster to face Norway, Switzerland and Iceland in Group B.

The roster includes 22 of the 24 players that were in Europe for the USA’s recent matches against France and England, with midfielder Megan Rapinoe, defender Christie Rampone and goalkeeper Hope Solo. After a formal review by U.S. Soccer, Solo was reinstated to the squad after serving a 30-day suspension last month.

This year’s tournament will run from March 4-11, and the U.S. team will depart for Europe on Feb. 22. The majority of the games will be played at small venues across the Algarve region on the southern coast of the country, with several matches at the 30,000-seat Algarve Stadium. The placement matches will take place on March 11.

The USA will face 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup participant Norway on March 4 (2 p.m. ET) at the Municipal Stadium in Vila Real de San Antonio, which sits right on the border with Spain. The USA then takes on Switzerland, which will play in its first Women’s World Cup this summer, on March 6 (12 p.m. ET), also in Vila Real de San Antonio. The U.S. finishes group play on March 9 against Iceland at Municipal Stadium Lagos (1:30 p.m. ET), which is in the western part of the Algarve region.

The USA’s first two matches and its placement match on March 11 (time TBD) will be shown live on FOX Sports 1. Fans will be able to follow the U.S. matches on Twitter @ussoccer_wnt and @ussoccer_esp. Highlights will be available ussoccer.com. For the entire tournament schedule, please visit the Algarve Cup tournament page on ussoccer.com.

Six of the world’s top-10 ranked teams are in this year’s Algarve Cup, including the top five. Brazil, which is currently ranked eighth, will be participating for the first time. Eleven of the 12 participating countries are ranked in the top-20 in the world.

“The value of the Algarve Cup is of course great games against top teams in a tournament format without much rest,” said Ellis. “In any year, this tournament presents great challenges, but as we continue to progress towards the World Cup, we want to get tested at the highest possible levels. Our opponents at this tournament give us another opportunity to gauge our depth and fitness.”

Group A features Germany, Brazil, Sweden and China PR. Group C features host Portugal, Japan, France and Denmark.

This will be the 22nd edition of the Algarve Cup and for the first time in 14 years, it will undergo a change in the competition format. When the Algarve Cup expanded from eight to 12 teams in 2001, a Group C was created that generally consisted of lower-tier teams that were eligible to compete only for spots in the placement matches for seventh, ninth and 11th place.

This year, for the first time, all 12 teams will be competing for the tournament title. The final will be contested by the two group winners with the most points (or if all three group winners are tied on points, the top two will be determined by a series of tiebreakers). The third-place match will feature the third-best group winner against the best second-place team from the three groups.

In addition, the fifth-place match will be played between the two remaining second-place teams; the seventh-place match between the two best third-place teams; the ninth-place match between the remaining third-place team against the best fourth-place team; while the 11th-place match will feature the remaining two teams that finished fourth in their groups.

The U.S. Women have won the Algarve Cup a record nine times, including an unprecedented three straight championships from 2003-05. The USA made the championship game for nine consecutive years from 2003-11 and most recently won the tournament in 2013, defeating Germany 2-0 in the final on two goals from Alex Morgan. Last year, the USA had its worst finish ever, taking seventh place with a 3-0 win against Korea DPR.

Eighteen players from last year’s Algarve Cup roster return, many of whom have played in numerous Algarve Cup tournaments.

U.S. Women’s National Team Roster By Position:
GOALKEEPERS (3): Ashlyn Harris (Washington Spirit), Alyssa Naeher (Boston Breakers), Hope Solo (Seattle Reign FC)
DEFENDERS (10): Lori Chalupny (Chicago Red Stars), Crystal Dunn (Washington Spirit), Whitney Engen (Western NY Flash), Julie Johnston (Chicago Red Stars), Meghan Klingenberg (Houston Dash), Ali Krieger (Washington Spirit), Kelley O’Hara (Sky Blue FC), Christie Rampone (Sky Blue FC), Becky Sauerbrunn (FC Kansas City), Rachel Van Hollebeke (Portland Thorns FC)
MIDFIELDERS (7): Shannon Boxx (Chicago Red Stars), Morgan Brian (Houston Dash), Tobin Heath (Portland Thorns FC), Lauren Holiday (FC Kansas City), Carli Lloyd (Houston Dash), Heather O’Reilly (FC Kansas City), 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 (Western NY Flash)

Additional Notes:

  • Christie Rampone and Megan Rapinoe return to the roster after overcoming injuries that caused them to miss the USA’s two-game European tour in early February, while Hope Solo returns after serving her suspension.
  • The USA has a 53-12-10 record all-time at the Algarve Cup and has scored 165 goals while allowing 61.
  • U.S. forward Abby Wambach comes into the tournament with 177 career goals, 21 of which have been scored at the Algarve Cup in 10 tournaments. Wambach is the top Algarve Cup scorer in U.S. history, having found the net eight more times than Kristine Lilly’s 13 scores.
  • Rapinoe and Lori Chalupny head into the tournament with 96 caps each and both could earn their 100th if they play in all four matches.
  • U.S. midfielder Heather O’Reilly heads into the tournament with 215 career caps and earned her 200th last year at the Algarve Cup. O’Reilly will be playing in her 13th Algarve Cup and made her U.S. debut at the tournament in 2002 at the age of 17.
  • Four other players made their WNT debut at the Algarve Cup: goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris (2013), defender Whitney Engen (2012), defender Rachel Van Hollebeke (2008) and forward Amy Rodriguez (2005).
  • U.S. captain Rampone, who currently is the second most-capped player in U.S. history with 304, will lead the U.S. team that features 10 defenders. Rampone will be playing in her 14th Algarve Cup.
  • Midfielder Carli Lloyd was the MVP of the 2007 Algarve Cup after scoring in all four games that year. She also scored three goals in the 2010 tournament and has 10 goals in total at the Algarve Cup. That ranks third among active players behind only Wambach (21) and Alex Morgan (11).
  • Defender Ali Krieger (2013) and midfielder Tobin Heath (2008) scored their first WNT goal at the Algarve Cup. Both against China PR.
  • U.S. midfielder Lauren Holiday missed last year’s tournament due to a family commitment. She has scored six goals in this tournament, as has O’Reilly.
  • The tiebreakers within the groups are as follows: 1) head-to-head result, 2) goal differential, 3) goals scored, 4) best Fair Play ranking from the group matches and 5) best FIFA ranking.
  • If two or more teams have the same points in different groups, the tiebreakers to determine the placement matches will be: 1) goal differential, 2) goals scored, 3) best Fair Play ranking from the group matches and 4) best FIFA ranking.
  • Each team is allowed six substitutions per game using four stops during the match. However, when the second half starts, each team can only make three stops to perform a maximum of six substitutions.
  • There are no suspensions for yellow card accumulation during the tournament, but an ejection during the tournament will result in a one-game suspension.

WNT Caps Off European Trip with 1-0 Victory against England

MILTON KEYNES, England (Feb. 13, 2015) – Alex Morgan scored the 50th goal of her career and the U.S. Women’s National Team notched its first win of the year, defeating No. 6 -ranked England 1-0 in front of 14,369 spectators at stadiummk. 

The USA now looks ahead to the 2015 Algarve Cup in Portugal, opening against Norway on Wednesday, March 4 (2 p.m. ET; FOX Sports 1). The WNT’s first home game of the year is April 4 against New Zealand at Busch Stadium in St. Louis (live on FOX Sports 1), where more than 28,000 tickets have already been sold (TICKETS).

The U.S. improved to 8-3-1 all-time against England. Seven of those eight wins have come by shutout.

The United States had many other moments to add to the scoring column, earning 10 corner kicks and a significant advantage in possession. However, the U.S. could not quite capitalize and England goalkeeper Karen Bardsley had a strong performance that included five saves.

Goal Scoring Rundown:
USA – Alex Morgan (Lauren Holiday), 25th minute: Morgan Brian started the sequence with a quick pass from the right flank to Holiday, who then crossed left-footed to Alex Morgan in the middle of the box. Morgan rose over England captain Steph Houghton and headed the ball toward the left of the frame. Goalkeeper Karen Bardley got her right glove on the shot, but it was not enough to prevent the ball from crossing the goal line as the USA scored the only goal it would need. USA 1, ENG 0 (SEE GOAL) (FINAL) 

Key Saves and Defensive Stops:
ENG – Steph Houghton, 21st minute: In one of the USA’s first attacking sequences in the first half, Morgan Brian collected the ball at the edge of the box and ripped a shot. However, England’s captain Houghton lunged in for the block and denied the opportunity. 

ENG – Karen Bardsley, 40th minute: USA right back Ali Krieger received the ball from Abby Wambach at the edge of the box and tried to sneak a shot past Bardsley at the near right post, only to see Bardsley cover the space well for the save.

ENG – Steph Houghton, 45th minute, +1: Left back Meghan Klingenberg crossed a dangerous ball into the box with Abby Wambach lurking in front of the goal. Instead, Houghton positioned herself in between to deflect the cross just wide right of the frame.

USA – Ashlyn Harris, 56th minute: Until this point, England was without a shot on frame, but Fran Kirby ended that stretch with a pacey strike from well outside the box. Harris stretched for the clutch save, parrying the ball just enough to push it off the crossbar. That left a rebound opportunity, which Jodie Taylor got on the end of and placed into the back of the net. However, the assistant referee ruled that Taylor was offside, nullifying the goal.

ENG – Karen Bardsley, 62nd minute: Alex Morgan looked to add to her goals total, escaping some contact from Laura Bassett and finding enough space to let off a left-footed shot toward the right post. Morgan did not quite get everything behind it, and Bardsley collected with the save to her left.

USA – Ali Krieger, 90th minute, +4: England had one final moment to squeeze out an equalizer, but on Eniola Aluko’s cross from the right side into the six-yard box, Krieger headed clear to maintain the shutout.

Milestone Watch:

  • With her 50th goal, Alex Morgan is now the 10th WNT player to reach that milestone. Morgan is now three goals behind ninth-place Carin Gabarra (53 goals from 1987-1996).
  • Abby Wambach became the sixth WNT player to earn 200 starts, joining Kristine Lilly (330), Christie Rampone (270), Julie Foudy (260), Mia Hamm (247) and Joy Fawcett (234). Wambach has now earned 234 caps, which also ranks sixth all-time.

Next on the Schedule:
The U.S. WNT returns to action at the 2015 Algarve Cup in Portugal, starting against Norway on Wednesday, March 4. Kickoff is at 2 p.m. ET at Vila Real de San Antonio.
Broadcast information: FOX Sports 1
Social: Twitter (@ussoccer_wnt; @ussoccer_esp); Facebook; Instagram 

Additional Notes:

  • Head coach Jill Ellis made two starting lineup changes from the USA’s previous match against No. 3-ranked France.
  • Goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris earned her second straight cap and appeared for the sixth time in her career.
  • The back line included the center back pairing of Becky Sauerbrunn and Whitney Engen, Meghan Klingenberg on the left and Ali Krieger on the right. Krieger earns her first start of the year after coming off the bench against France.
  • The midfield in the USA’s 4-4-2 included Lauren Holiday and Morgan Brian in the center, Carli Lloyd on the left and Christen Press on the right.
  • Alex Morgan and Abby Wambach were paired up top. Wambach, who was a second-half sub against France, wore the captain’s armband.
  • Defender Crystal Dunn made her first appearance of the year and collected the 24th cap of her career, replacing Klingenberg in the 79th minute.
  • In the waning moments, Amy Rodriguez entered for Morgan in the 90th minute and Kelley O’Hara replaced Press in the second minute of stoppage time. 

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

Match: U.S. Women’s National Team vs. England
Date: Feb. 13, 2015
Competition: International Friendly 
Venue: stadiummk; Milton Keynes, England
Kickoff: 3 p.m. ET
Attendance: 14,369
Weather: 41 degrees; Scattered clouds 

Scoring Summary:   1 2  F
USA                            1 0 1
ENG                            0 0 0

USA – Alex Morgan (Lauren Holiday) 25th minute 

Lineups:
USA: 24-Ashlyn Harris; 11-Ali Krieger, 6-Whitney Engen, 4-Becky Sauerbrunn, 25-Meghan Klingenberg (22-Crystal Dunn, 79); 23-Christen Press (5-Kelley O’Hara, 90+2), 15-Morgan Brian, 12-Lauren Holiday, 10-Carli Lloyd; 13-Alex Morgan (8-Amy Rodriguez, 90), 20-Abby Wambach (capt.)
Subs Not Used: 7-Shannon Boxx, 9-Heather O’Reilly, 14-Julie Johnston, 16-Lori Chalupny, 17-Tobin Heath, 19-Rachel Van Hollebeke, 21-Alyssa Naeher, 26-Tori Huster
Head coach: Jill Ellis

ENG: 1-Karen Bardsley; 2-Alex Scott, 5-Steph Houghton (capt.), 6-Laura Bassett (19-Jessica Clarke, 90), 3-Demi Stokes (14-Alex Greenwood, 70); 7-Jordan Nobbs (16-Fara Williams, 81), 8-Jill Scott, 4-Jo Potter (20-Eni Aliko, 79), 11-Karen Carney; 9-Jodie Taylor (22-Lianne Sanderson, 81), 10-Fran Kirby,
Subs Not Used: 12-Gemma Bonner, 13-Siobhan Chamberlain, 15-Casey Stoney, 17-Katie Chapman, 18-Jade Moore, 21-Carly Telford
Head coach: Mark Sampson 

Stats Summary: USA / ENG
Shots: 12 / 3
Shots on Goal: 6 / 2
Saves: 2 / 5
Corner Kicks: 10 / 2
Fouls: 3 / 7
Offside: 1 / 1 

Misconduct Summary:
None

Officials:
Referee: Sandra Bastos (POR)
Assistant Referee 1: Olga Almeida (POR)
Assistant Referee 2: Maria Joao Freire (POR)
Fourth Official: Lorraine Clark (SCO)

Budweiser Woman of the Match: Christen Press

One Nation. One Team. 23 Stories - WNT Trailer

ussoccer.com’s “One Nation. One Team. 23 Stories.” returns in Spring of 2015 with the Women’s National Team. Stay tuned for information about the full release schedule!

WNT Refocuses on England Clash

After a tough 2-0 loss to France in Lorient, the WNT traveled to England to prep for its second match of 2015 against the up-and-coming Lionesses. While the weather was cold, the USA’s mentality heated up as the team zeroed in on another match against one of the world’s top teams.

Photo Gallery: WNT Battles France in 2015 Opener

Photos from the U.S. WNT's 2-0 loss to France in Lorient during its first match of 2015. The USA next faces England just outside London in Milton Keyes on Friday, Feb. 13. The match will be broadcast on FOX Sports 1 and Univision Deportes. 


Over the course of her career she has developed into one of the best two-way midfielders in the world and one of the top scorers in U.S. history with quite a few spectacular goals on her resume. Holds the distinction of scoring the winning goals in both the 2008 and 2012 Olympic gold medal games. The USA's attacking midfielder possesses some rare qualities in her ability to beat players on the dribble and to strike on goal from distance. Lloyd was named the 2008 U.S. Soccer Female Athlete of the Year.

2014: Second on the U.S. team in scoring in 2014 with 10 goals and eight assists, reaching double figures in goals during a calendar year for the second time in her career … She put in a tremendous performance at the CONCACAF Women’s Championship as the only U.S. player to play every minute of the competition while scoring five goals with four assists and was named tournament MVP … Her two goals in a 3-0 semifinal victory vs. Mexico helped the USA clinch its berth to the 2015 Women’s World Cup and she had a goal and two assists in the championship game … Had three multiple goal games during the year, against Russia, China PR and Mexico … 2013: Played 768 minutes in 11 games while starting nine and scored three goals with one assist … Scored against the Korea Republic, Australia and New Zealand … With her 45th and 46th career goals, she tied and then passed Julie Foudy to become the top scorer in U.S. WNT history for a player that has played exclusively in the midfield … In 2014, she could become the 9th player in U.S. history to score 50 or more goals … 2012: Played in all 32 matches for the USA, one of just three players to do so, while starting 27 … She was once again a hero in an Olympic gold medal game, scoring both goals in the USA’s 2-1 victory against Japan in front of more than 80,000 fans at Wembley Stadium … Became the only player – male or female – in the history of the Olympics to score game-winning goals in two consecutive Olympic gold medal games … Her 2,441 minutes played were the second-most in a year during her career … Her 15 goals were a career high for a calendar year and made her the third-leading scorer on the U.S. team … Did not start the first match of the Olympics against France, but came on early for an injured Shannon Boxx and scored the winning goal … She then started the remaining five games while scoring four total goals, good for second on the team in the Olympics behind Abby Wambach’s five goals … She never left the field again after coming into the France match in the 16th minute … Scored a slew of goals against top teams and registered her first career hat trick in a 3-0 victory against Mexico during Olympic qualifying to seal first place in the group for the USA … Started all five games of the Olympic Qualifying tournament in Vancouver, Canada, scoring six goals (tied for tops on the team) with one assist … Also scored in the 3-0 semifinal victory against Costa Rica that sent the USA to the Olympics … On the short list for the 2012 FIFA Women’s World Player of the Year and finished sixth in the voting … 2011: Tied for the team lead in games played with 19, starting them all, and led the USA in minutes played with 1,654 … Played all but 16 minutes of the Women’s World Cup in Germany, scoring one goal with one assist … The first World Cup goal of her career came against Colombia in group play on a shot from distance ... Tied for second on the team in scoring with six goals and three assists on the year … Scored three goals at the Algarve Cup, against Norway, Finland and then Iceland in the championship game … Also scored against Sweden and China at the Four Nations Tournament … Her six goals moved her into 15th place on the all-time U.S. scoring list with 28 goals … 2010: Suffered a broken ankle early in the WPS season but still played in 15 matches for the USA, starting 14 … She scored three goals with five assists and earned her 100th career cap in the final game of the year against Italy during the second leg of the FIFA Women’s World Cup playoff series … Scored against Germany in the Algarve Cup final … Started all five games at the CONCACAF Women’s World Cup Qualifying Tournament, scoring two goals with five assists … Played every minute of both legs of the playoff series against Italy … 2009: Played in six games for the USA, starting five … 2008: Named the U.S. Soccer Female Athlete of the Year … Was a fixture in the midfield for the USA, starting all 35 games in which she played, tying for the team lead in matches started during the year … Set a U.S. record for most starts in a year at 35 … Finished third on the team in minutes played with 2,781 … Had her best scoring year for the WNT, finding the net nine times with nine assists … Scored two huge goals during the 2008 Olympics, bagging the winner in the crucial 1-0 victory against Japan in group play and then scored one of the most important goals in U.S. history in the Olympic gold medal game as she netted the game-winner in the overtime victory against Brazil … Scored against Canada in the championship game of Olympic qualifying on a dramatic free kick in overtime … Scored the winning goal in a 3-2 stoppage time victory against Australia on April 27, in Cary, N.C. … Scored in both of the USA’s matches in Scandinavia, against Norway and Sweden … 2007: Established herself in a starting role in midfield … After scoring once in her first 24 matches, she scored four goals – one in each game – at the 2007 Algarve Cup, earning tournament top scorer and MVP honors … Scored her sixth career goal on a diving header in the USA’s 1-0 victory against Norway on July 14 and then registered her first two-goal game in a 6-1 win against New Zealand on Aug. 12, including one blast from 38 yards … Started 13 of the 23 matches she played … Played in her first Women’s World Cup tournament, starting three (all in the first round) of the five games she played … Had nine goals and three assists to finish third on the team in scoring … 2006: Earned her third career cap at the 2006 Four Nations Tournament … Earned the first two starts of her career at the 2006 Algarve Cup, gaining a place in the starting 11 against Denmark and in the championship game against Germany … Played in 19 games, starting 13, and scored one goal, that against Chinese Taipei … 2005: Earned her first two caps in 2005, playing against Ukraine and Mexico, a game in which she broke her wrist … 2004: Trained with the U.S. team during the 2004 Olympic Residency Training Camp … Youth National Teams: A member of four U-21 Nordic Cup championships teams, winning titles in 2002 in Finland, in Denmark in 2003, in Iceland in 2004 and in Sweden in 2005 … Scored three times in the 2005 Nordic Cup, including two against Denmark and one in the championship against Norway … Had two goals and an assist, starting every match, at the 2004 Nordic Cup ... Assisted on the lone goal in the USA’s 1-0 win against Denmark in the first round of the 2003 Nordic Cup ... First Appearance: July 10, 2005, vs. Ukraine ... First Goal: Oct. 1, 2006, vs. Chinese Taipei.

2014: Traded to the Houston Dash on Oct. 16  exchange for midfielder Becky Edwards, defender Whitney Engen, and a third round pick in the 2016 NWSL College Draft … In her second season in the NWSL, she was the second-leading scorer for the Western New York Flash, finding the net eight times with five assists … Named to the NWSL Best XI Second-Team … 2013: Allocated to the Western New York Flash for the 2013 NWSL season and played 1,296 minutes in 15 matches, starting 14 … Missed a few games at the start of the season due to injury, but returned to have an excellent year, scoring eight regular season goals, tied for third in the league with four other players … Scored both goals in the 2-0 playoff semifinal win against Sky Blue FC that sent Western NY to the first NWSL championship game … Finished fifth in the league in shots (53) … 2011: Signed with the Atlanta Beat for the 2011 WPS season, playing 800 minutes in 10 games while starting eight … Scored two goals for the Beat … 2010: Signed with her home state and WPS champion Sky Blue FC during the offseason … Played in just five games for Sky Blue in 2010 after suffering a broken ankle early in the season … Was out almost the entire season but returned to play the last two matches and logged just 200 minutes of action in the second season of WPS … 2009: Allocated to the Chicago Red Stars for the inaugural WPS season in 2009 … Played in 16 games for the Red Stars, starting 14, and scored two goals with one assist … Missed several games during the middle of the season after suffering a deep gash across her knee during national team training … Youth: Played for the Medford Strikers club team, winning the 1997 and 1998 State Cups ... Helped lead PDA Galaxy to the 2001 U-23 national title and earned MVP honors … Also trained with the WUSA’s Philadelphia Charge during the summer of 2003.
Full name is Carli Anne Lloyd … Earned a bachelor’s degree in Exercise Science and Sport Studies at Rutgers University … In 2013, she was named to the Rutgers University Hall of Distinguished Alumni … She was on the list of Bleacher Report Top 100 Athletes of 2012 … Also a 2012 Glamour Women of the Year … Favorite soccer players are Iniesta, Xavi, Lionel Messi and Steven Gerrard, and her favorite club teams are Barcelona and Liverpool … Says her best moment was scoring two goals in the 2012 Olympic final vs. Japan to help the USA win the gold medal … Lists biggest influence on her soccer career as personal trainer and mentor James Galanis … Is addicted to her Burt’s Bees lip balm … Had a flavor named after her at a local ice cream shop: “Carli’s Cake Batter Cookie Dough Kick” … Won the 2008 Native Son Award from the Philadelphia Sports Writers Association, only the second woman to earn the award since it was first awarded in 1991 (other winners include Mike Piazza, Eddie George and Rich Gannon) … Is a Philadelphia sports fan … Has a website at www.carlilloyd.com, a twitter account @carlilloyd and her Instagram is carlilloyd.
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