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U.S. WNT Wraps Up Send-Off Series Saturday, August 25 against Finland at Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif.

U.S. Women’s National Team Notes
USA vs. Finland
Chicago, Ill.
Aug. 21, 2007

U.S. WOMEN ON BRINK OF 2007 FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP: The 2007 Send-Off Series for the U.S. Women’s National Team comes to a close on Saturday, Aug. 25, as the USA faces Finland at The Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif. Kickoff is at 6:30 p.m. live on ESPN2 with JP Dellacamera calling the action along with two color commentators, Ohio State head coach Lori Walker and U.S. defender Heather Mitts, who is recovering from knee surgery. On the sideline will be Jaime Motta. Fans can of course also follow the action on’s MatchTracker. Usual analyst Julie Foudy will not be doing this match as she is busy getting inducted into the National Soccer Hall of Fame this weekend, along with long time teammate Mia Hamm. The Finland match will be the last of six games in the Send-Off Series and the last of eight domestic matches the USA has played this year leading into the Women’s World Cup. Following the game, the U.S. team will get Sunday off and then travel to China on Monday to begin final preparations for the greatest sporting spectacle in women’s team sports.

21-Nicole Barnhart (Gilbertsville, Pa.), 1-Briana Scurry (Dayton, Minn.), 18-Hope Solo (Richland, Wash.);
DEFENDERS (6): 2-Marian Dalmy (Lakewood, Colo.), 8-Tina Ellertson (Vancouver, Wash.), 14-Stephanie Lopez (Elk Grove, Calif.), 15-Kate Markgraf (Bloomfield Hills, Mich.), 3-Christie Rampone (Point Pleasant, N.J.), 4-Cat Whitehill (Birmingham, Ala.);
MIDFIELDERS (7): 7-Shannon Boxx (Redondo Beach, Calif.), 17-Lori Chalupny (St. Louis, Mo.), 16-Angela Hucles, 19-Marci Jobson (St. Charles, Ill.), 11-Carli Lloyd (Delran, N.J.), 12-Leslie Osborne (Brookfield, Wis.), 10-Aly Wagner (San Jose, Calif.);
FORWARDS (5): 6-Natasha Kai (Kahuku, Hawaii), 13-Kristine Lilly (Wilton, Conn.), 9-Heather O’Reilly (East Brunswick, N.J.), 5-Lindsay Tarpley (Kalamazoo, Mich.), 20-Abby Wambach (Rochester, N.Y.).

BREAK DOWN OF U.S. WOMEN’S WORLD CUP EXPERIENCE: Need advice on playing in a Women’s World Cup? Kristine Lilly can give that to you. She’ll be playing in her record fifth Women’s World Cup in China. The Women’s World Cup experience on the team ranges from Lilly to 12 first-timers.

Five Women’s World Cups: Kristine Lilly
Four: Briana Scurry
Three: Kate Markgraf, Christie Rampone
Two: Shannon Boxx, Angela Hucles, Aly Wagner, Abby Wambach, Cat Whitehill
One: Nicole Barnhart, Lori Chalupny, Marian Dalmy, Tina Ellertson, Marci Jobson, Natasha Kai, Carli Lloyd, Stephanie Lopez, Heather O’Reilly, Leslie Osborne, Hope Solo, Lindsay Tarpley.

2007 Women’s National Team Send-Off Series
Date Opponent Venue (City) Kickoff TV
June 16 China Cleveland Browns Stadium (Cleveland, Ohio) 2-0 W
June 23 Brazil Giants Stadium (East Rutherford, N.J.) 2-0 W
July 14 Norway Rentschler Field (East Hartford, Conn.) 1-0 W
July 28 Japan Spartan Stadium (San Jose, Calif.) 4-1 W
Aug. 12 New Zealand Soldier Field (Chicago, Ill.) 6-1
Aug. 25 Finland The Home Depot Center (Carson, Calif.) 6:30 p.m. PT ESPN2
2007 FIFA Women’s World Cup
Date Opponent Venue (City) Kickoff TV
Sept. 11 North Korea Chengdu (Chengdu Sports Center Stadium) 5 p.m. / 5 am 4:55 a.m. ET ESPN2
Sept. 14 Sweden Chengdu (Chengdu Sports Center Stadium) 5 p.m. / 5 am 4:55 a.m. ET ESPN
Sept. 18 Nigeria Shanghai (Shanghai Hongkou Football Stadium) 8 p.m. / 8 a.m. 7:55 a.m. ET on ESPN

BIG BOXX STADIUM: The U.S. Women’s National Team will be playing its eighth match at The Home Depot Center when it takes on Finland on Aug. 25. U.S. midfielder Shannon Boxx grew up in nearby Torrance, just a few minutes from The HDC. She played in the USA’s first four matches at The HDC, and adding to the adage that “there’s no place like home,” scored in all of them. Boxx has 15 career goals and more than 25% of them have come at the HDC. She missed the USA’s most recent matches in Carson as she was still recovering from knee surgery when the USA played and won the semifinal and championship game of the 2006 CONCACAF Women’s Gold Cup last November, defeating Mexico, 2-0, and Canada, 2-1. Boxx, who scored against Japan on July 28, will be looking to extend her HDC scoring streak which started in her very first cap on Sept. 1, 2003, against Costa Rica before the 2003 FIFA Women’s World Cup.

ONE MORE PASS: Kristine Lilly has 99 career assists, just one away from becoming just the second player in U.S. history to set up 100 goals. Mia Hamm (144 assists) is the other. If and when Lilly gets her century assist, she will join Hamm as the only two players in women’s soccer history in the “100-100” club, players who have scored and assisted on more than 100 goals.

READY, SET, BLOG!: The 2007 WNT Women's World Cup Blog has kicked off on, and it will take you along with the U.S. Women’s National Team up to and through the 2007 FIFA Women’s World Cup. You get a peak behind the scenes at the U.S. team off the field as they prepare for some of the biggest matches of their lives. We know lots of funny and interesting things happen on the road, but we don’t know when or where, so keep logging onto the blog for brief posts which we hope you will enjoy along with the myriad of other coverage that will supply during the 2007 FIFA Women’s World Cup.

LLOYD HAVE MERCY: U.S. midfielder Carli Lloyd has found her goal scoring rhythm at a perfect time. After scoring once in her first 24 games on the National Team, Lloyd has struck seven times in her last 11 games and will be looking for more against Finland this weekend. If Lloyd can be a consistent goal scoring threat from the attacking midfield position at the Women’s World Cup, it will make the U.S. attack considerably more difficult to contain.

USA HEADS INTO WWC AT NUMBER ONE: The final FIFA Women’s World Rankings before the start of the 2007 FIFA Women’s World Cup was released last June and, as the Americans women remained comfortably in the top spot, they will head into the Women’s World Cup with the top ranking. The USA holds a healthy lead over reigning Women’s World Cup champions Germany, followed by Sweden, Norway and North Korea.

GROUP OF…GULP!: As Sweden moved from fourth up to third in the FIFA Women’s World Cup Rankings, and with North Korea at fifth, the USA’s Group B at the 2007 FIFA Women’s World Cup now includes three of the top-five teams in the world, which on paper, has to be considered one of the most difficult groups in the history of the Women’s World Cup.

USA FINISH EXCELLENT WWC PREP SCHEDULE: The U.S. team will head into the Women’s World Cup having played 15 matches in 2007 (12 against teams participating in the 2007 FIFA Women’s World Cup) and 22 matches in 2006 (14 against teams in the 2007 FIFA WWC). In fact, since the end of the 2003 FIFA Women’s World Cup, the USA has played 50 matches against teams that will be in China, compiling a 38-2-10 record. The only two losses have come to Group B foe Sweden, and Denmark. Those 10 ties came against China (twice), Japan, Denmark (twice), Australia, Germany (twice) and England. Of those 50 games against 2007 WWC teams, 29 matches have been played outside of the USA. In those 29 games, the USA is 21-1-7, with the lone loss coming to Sweden at the Algarve Cup. Since the 2003 WWC, the USA is 5-0-4 in China. All-time, the USA is 18-4-9 in games played in China, including 5-4-4 against China.

ALL WWC MATCHES LIVE ON ESPN FAMILY OF NETWORKS: You’ll have to get up early, or stay up late, but you can see U.S. midfielder Shannon Boxx and all of her teammates live in all of their 2007 Women’s World Cup matches. ESPN and ESPN2 will combine to cover all 32 matches of the 2007 FIFA Women's World Cup beginning September 10. ESPN will show 12 games and ESPN2 the remaining 20 games, while will air all 32 games. The games will air between 5:00-10:00am ET from China. Select matches, including all of the U.S. matches, will be re-aired on ESPNU, ESPN Classic or ESPN2 in the evenings. In addition, 30-minute pre-match and one-hour, in-between match studio shows will be aired on select days. Coverage will begin on ESPN2 Monday, Sept. 10 at 7:55 a.m. ET with the tournament’s opening match featuring the 2003 FIFA Women’s World Cup champion Germany vs. Argentina from Shanghai’s Hongkou Football Stadium. To ensure uninterrupted coverage of the matches, the networks will not air commercials during the two 45-minute halves, similar to the 1998 and 2002 FIFA World Cups and the 1999 and 2003 FIFA Women’s World Cups. Commercials will be on during pre-match, halftime and post-match segments. The telecasts will feature the continuous score and clock that ESPN, ESPN2 and ABC first introduced on American television during the 1994 FIFA World Cup.

Stat of Note
Combined caps of Lindsay Tarpley, Natasha Kai, Tina Ellertson, Carli Lloyd, Leslie Osborne, Stephanie Lopez, Lori Chalupny and Heather O’Reilly.

World record for caps held by Kristine Lilly