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U.S. Women's National Team "Shirts Off Their Backs" Auction Raises More Than $20,500 to Benefit Japan Tsunami Relief

Game-Worn Jerseys Signed by U.S. Team from Match Against Japan on May 14 in Columbus, Ohio, Garner 820 Total Bids; Proceeds Will Go to the American Red Cross’s Tsunami Relief Efforts in Japan

CHICAGO (May 24, 2011) -- The autographed, game-worn jerseys from the U.S. Women’s World Cup Team who faced Japan on May 14 at Columbus Crew Stadium in Columbus, Ohio, raised a total of $20,597.44 via an online auction. The proceeds from the fundraiser will go to the American Red Cross to benefit tsunami relief efforts in Japan.

The USA and Japan played two matches last week, meeting at Columbus Crew Stadium and on May 18 in Cary, N.C., with the USA coming away with 2-0 wins in both games. Both teams are preparing for the 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Germany.

The May 14 match marked the on-field debut of the new black U.S. WNT jersey. Following the match, the jerseys were washed and each shirt was signed by 20 players and head coach Pia Sundhage.

U.S. goalkeeper Hope Solo’s jersey drew the highest winning bid of $3,050, while Tobin Heath’s jersey went for $2,326. Abby Wambach’s jersey was won for $1,250. Every one of the jerseys was sold and went for more than $500.

“It really means a lot that to our team we were able to raise that money for Japan,” said U.S. co-captain Rachel Buehler. “A lot of us have personal ties with players on that team and we have respect and love for them and their culture. It’s great that we were able to come together, us and Japan, to raise the money and make a little bit of a difference. That’s what it’s all about, being able to make a difference in each other’s lives.”

Prior to both matches, a moment of silence was observed to honor the victims of the disaster.

U.S. Soccer fans looking to help those affected by the tsunami in Japan can text the word "REDCROSS" to 90999 to make a $10 donation. Standard message and data rates may apply. Fans can also donate online at