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. 16, 2015) – The 2015 Women’s World Cup champions will continue their Victory Tour with matches against Brazil on Oct. 21 in Seattle, presented by Liberty Mutual Insurance (7 p.m. PT on ESPN2/ WatchESPN), and Oct. 25 in Orlando (2:30 p.m. ET on FOX Sports 1/FOX Sports GO). The matches are the fifth and sixth of the tour.
“We are looking forward to two competitive games against Brazil,” said U.S. Women’s National Team head coach Jill Ellis. “They are a highly motivated team and certainly they have some exciting and dangerous attacking players. These are the kinds of games where we get tested and it provides a chance to evaluate our player pool. The more matches we can play like this, the better.”
All 23 players from the Women’s World Cup winners will be at both venues in addition to NWSL MVP and leading scorer Crystal Dunn, who was added to the roster for the USA’s two September matches against Haiti and scored two goals with three assists over the two games.
Ellis has called in seven additional players who will train with the U.S. team during the trip and are available to play in the matches.
The October games will be the final international matches for midfielders Shannon Boxx and Lauren Holiday and defender Lori Chalupny, all of whom announced their international retirements earlier in the year. Boxx will play her final match in Seattle while Holiday and Chalupny will play their final matches in Orlando.
Tickets for both games are on sale at ussoccer.com. In the Seattle area, tickets are also available at all Ticketmaster ticket centers (including most Fred Meyer and Walmart locations) and the CenturyLink Field ticket office (open Monday-Friday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Saturday 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.). In Central Florida, tickets are also available at all Ticketmaster ticket centers (including most Walmart locations) as well as the Amway Center ticket office (open Monday-Friday 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.) [Note: Tickets are not sold at the Orlando Citrus Bowl except on the day of the event.]
Women’s National Team Roster by Position: Detailed Roster
GOALKEEPERS (3): Ashlyn Harris (Washington Spirit), Alyssa Naeher (Boston Breakers), Hope Solo (Seattle Reign FC)
DEFENDERS (12): Lori Chalupny (Chicago Red Stars), Crystal Dunn (Washington Spirit), Whitney Engen (Western NY Flash), Jaelene Hinkle (Western NY Flash), Julie Johnston (Chicago Red Stars), Meghan Klingenberg (Houston Dash), Ali Krieger (Washington Spirit), Gina Lewandowski (FC Bayern Munich), Kelley O’Hara (Sky Blue FC), Christie Rampone (Sky Blue FC), Becky Sauerbrunn (FC Kansas City), Emily Sonnett (Univ. of Virginia)
MIDFIELDERS (9): Shannon Boxx (unattached), Morgan Brian (Houston Dash), Tobin Heath (Portland Thorns FC), Lauren Holiday (FC Kansas City), Carli Lloyd (Houston Dash), Samantha Mewis (Western NY Flash), Christine Nairn (Washington Spirit), Heather O’Reilly (FC Kansas City), Megan Rapinoe (Seattle Reign FC)
FORWARDS (7): Lindsey Horan (Paris Saint-Germain), Sydney Leroux (Western NY Flash), Stephanie McCaffrey (Boston Breakers), Alex Morgan (Portland Thorns FC), Christen Press (Chicago Red Stars), Amy Rodriguez (FC Kansas City), Abby Wambach (unattached)
- Four of the players called up that were not members of the 2015 Women’s World Cup Team previously have earned caps with the senior side: forward Lindsey Horan (two caps at the 2013 Algarve Cup), who is currently playing professionally in France with Paris Saint-Germain; Samantha Mewis (three caps in 2014), a NWSL Rookie of the Year finalist with the Western NY Flash who started 20 games while scoring four goals with four assists; midfielder Christine Nairn of the Washington Spirit (two caps and a goal in 2009 when she was 18) who had five goals and four assists this past NWSL season; and Crystal Dunn, who is up to 15 caps to go with her two scores.
- Three players were called to their first WNT camp in 22-year-old defender Jaelene Hinkle, who played every minute of all 20 matches last season with the Western NY Flash; 22-year-old defender Emily Sonnett, a senior captain at the University of Virginia; and 30-year-old defender Gina Lewandowski, currently of FC Bayern Munich, who has played in Germany since 2007 and won a UEFA Champions League title with Ali Krieger and FFC Frankfurt in 2008. Lewandowski and Krieger are the only Americans to win a UEFA Champions League title.
- Forward Stephanie McCaffrey, who started 17 of the 19 matches she played this past season with the Boston Breakers while scoring three goals with three assists, previously trained with the U.S. team during an extended training camp last January.
- The U.S. Women have not played in Seattle since two Women’s World Cup Qualifying matches in 2002 that were played at SAFECO Field, home of the Seattle Mariners.
- The Seattle Reign of the NWSL features two stars of the U.S. team, Washington native and Women’s World Cup Golden Glove winner Hope Solo and midfielder Megan Rapinoe.
- The U.S. team has a long history in Orlando, which was the training base for the U.S. team for the 1995 and 1999 Women’s World Cups and the 1996 Olympics. The USA played two matches at the Citrus Bowl during the 1996 Olympics and most recently played there against Brazil in November 2013, a 4-1 victory in front of more than 20,000 fans.
- At the Women’s World Cup in Canada, Brazil won Group E over Korea Republic, Costa Rica and Spain but fell to Australia 1-0 in the Round of 16. Brazil is currently ranked sixth in the world.
CHICAGO (Sept. 24, 2015) – The autographed, game-worn jerseys of the players from the U.S. Women’s World Cup Team that faced Costa Rica on Aug. 19 at Finley Stadium in Chattanooga, Tennessee, drew a total of $63,924.05 via an online auction. All proceeds from the unique fundraiser will go to the Chattanooga Heroes Fund to benefit the families of the victims from the July 16 tragedy in Chattanooga in which five U.S. servicemen were killed.
The USA defeated Costa Rica, 7-2, at the match in Chattanooga where the players were led out on the field by members of the military. There was also a moment of silence before the game and the players wore black armbands in remembrance.
U.S. defender Ali Krieger’s jersey drew the highest winning bid of $11,100 while goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris’ jerseys went for $9,100 and Alex Morgan’s went for $7,900. Every one of the jerseys went for more than $750 and averaged $2,779 each.
“We are fortunate to be able to play the game we love and inspire others, and to have the opportunity to help the fund and help the families of the victims is the least we can do,” said Krieger. “We were honored to play for the United States in Chattanooga and to auction off our jerseys to benefit the families of servicemen who do so much for country.”
THE GERMAN EXPERIENCE
When Krieger graduated from Penn State, the U.S. pro league was shut down. “I wasn’t ready to work a day job yet. I felt like I really needed to keep playing. My dream was to make the National Team, and I thought maybe I could get there by going to play abroad.”
Krieger’s great grandfather was German, and she was also drawn to the idea of reconnecting with her family roots. “I showed up in Germany with my two bags. I had no clue what I was getting myself into. I didn’t know the language, I didn’t have a place to live, I didn’t know the culture, I just jumped right into it,” says Krieger.
The Germans were initially quiet and reserved. “Even though their English was really good, if they can’t speak it perfectly, they just won’t do it,” says Krieger. “I didn’t speak to some of my teammates for half a year.” She hated not being able to know their personalities so she started taking German classes three days a week, approaching the language with the same determination she exhibits on the field. “I didn’t think it was fair to just assume they’d speak English.”
By the end of her time there, she had very much adjusted: “I got a tattoo of Liebe, which means Love in German – it represents my time there. Love for the country, the culture and my experience. It’s my second home.”
Krieger means “warrior” in German and her teammates called her “The Warrior Princess.” Krieger explains the “princess” component, “Deep down, I’m really girly. I wear mascara every day; I put it on just to get the mail. I never leave the house without it – it’s like my war paint. I always have it on – especially for games.”
The “Warrior” part of the nickname is also fitting for a player who has overcome the kind of setback Krieger faced her senior year of college. In her final year at Penn State, she broke her leg. Several plane flights during the College Cup led to blood clots in her leg that resulted in a pulmonary embolism and a series of mini heart-attacks.
She described feeling unnaturally out of breath to her then-boyfriend, a pre-med student, who took her heart rate and insisted they go to the hospital. “I turned to him and said, ‘Am I going to live?’ And he couldn’t even answer me.”
Doctors told her that if she would’ve fallen asleep that night, she probably wouldn’t have made it.
For six months, they monitored her recovery. She gave herself shots every day and got her blood taken. Once the blood clots were gone, she slowly progressed back into the game.
THE MAKING OF THE WARRIOR
Krieger started playing soccer because of her brother Kyle, “I just wanted to do whatever he did. I wanted to hang out with him all the time and just be hardcore. We were best friends.” They’d play Manhunt, they’d make forts out in the woods, “You had to have a secret password; we wouldn’t even let the dog come in.”
They’d also play “King of the Bed.” “My parents had a bed that was pretty high off the ground and my dad would try to throw us off. One side of the bed was the lava pit, one side was the shark tank, and one side was the cliff, ‘the briny deep.’ It was just like WrestleMania,” Krieger explains. “I remember laughing so much. My mom would wear hear thumps. She would yell up to stop, and we would look at each other, and say one, two, three and then yell, NOOO.”
In spite of their close relationship, when Krieger experienced her health scares, she couldn’t locate her brother. Battling addiction, he was at a low. “He had hit rock bottom: waking up homeless, robbed in his car. “When he recovered, he told me, ‘I’m going to be a better brother,’” remembers Krieger. With Ali’s support, Kyle turned his life around and the two siblings are tighter than ever. “He’s my rock,” says Krieger. “He’s the one I turn to for everything.”
U.S. National Team: One of the USA’s best attacking defenders and a gritty ball-winner, before returning to the USA in 2013, she was the only U.S. regular playing her club soccer overseas.
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 appeared on the back line in 16 of the USA's 17 matches this year, starting 13... Strong defensive presence during the U.S.'s run to its 10th Algarve title...Appeared and started in three games during the Algarve Cup, including the 2-0 victory over France in the final... 2014: Had her busiest year with the National Team, appearing in 20 of the team’s 24 games while starting 18 and logging 1,596 minutes (third on the team for field players), both career highs … Doubled her career assist total by adding three, against Russia (2/8), Korea DPR (3/12) and Argentina (12/18) … 2013: Made her return to the U.S. team after fully recovering from knee surgery, playing 776 minutes in 10 matches while starting nine … Scored her first WNT goal, that coming on March 8 against China PR during a 5-0 win at the Algarve Cup in Portugal … 2012: Played in just one match at the CONCACAF Olympic qualifying tournament before tearing her ACL in the 42nd minute against the Dominican Republic, which ruled her out for the year … 2011: Had a breakout year while seeing the most extensive action of her National Team career to date, starting all 16 games in which she played … Her 1,341 minutes played were sixth-best on the team … Made her first Women’s World Cup team and started all six games in her return to Germany, where she lived and played for the previous four years … One of four U.S. players to play every minute of the Women’s World Cup … Sealed her place in U.S. history by converting the fifth and final penalty kick in the dramatic shootout victory over Brazil in the quarterfinal … Had two assists during the year … 2010: Played in eight matches for the USA, starting four … Played all 180 minutes in two matches at the CONCACAF Women’s World Cup Qualifying tournament … 2009: Did not play in a game for the USA … 2008: Made her first roster and debuted in January at the Four Nations Tournament in China, starting and playing every minute of games against Canada and Finland … Her first start in a 4-0 win against Canada was also Pia Sundhage’s first match as head coach of the USA … First call-up came in January … Youth National Teams: Played for the U.S. U-21/U-23 Women’s National Team in 2006 and 2007 … First Appearance: Jan. 16, 2008, vs. Canada … First goal: March 8, 2013, vs. China PR
Professional / Club – 2014: Started all 22 games in which she played for the NWSL’s Washington Spirit, compiling 1,935 minutes (second on the team) while playing several different positons, including center-back … Helped the team earn its first NWSL playoff berth with a fourth-place regular season finish … Scored one goal, on May 3 against Seattle … Named to the NWSL Best XI First-Team … 2013: Played 1,422 minutes in 18 matches, starting 16, and scored one goal … Named to the NWSL Second XI … 2012: Was allocated to the Washington Spirit for the inaugural season of the NWSL… Returned to Frankfurt and played six matches over three months before coming back to the USA to play in the NWSL …2010-11: Helped Frankfurt win the German Cup in 2011, a 2-1 victory against Turbine Potsdam in front of more than 20,000 fans in her last game for Frankfurt before returning to the USA for a brief period after four years abroad … Played in 11 games for Frankfurt, starting all of them, and scored one goal … 2009: She regained match fitness to play in 10 matches, starting nine, on loan with the Washington Freedom during the 2009 WPS season … 2008-09: Wasn’t able to play for most of the 2008-2009 season at Frankfurt due to a foot injury that kept her out for about nine months … 2008: Allocated to the Washington Freedom before the start-up of Women’s Professional Soccer in 2008, but due to her contract with Frankfurt, she was initially unavailable to the Freedom … 2007-08: She won “the treble” in 2008, winning a UEFA Women’s Championship, the Bundesliga title and the German Cup with Frankfurt … Scored her first goal in Germany on Feb. 24, 2008, vs. FCR Duisburg … Youth: Coached by her dad Ken Krieger on the Prince William Sparklers, for whom she played from age 7 to 19 … Eight players stayed with the team for that entire run, and almost every player went on to play NCAA Division I.