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U.S. WNT Ready to Open CONCACAF Women's World Cup Qualifying Against Haiti


U.S. Women's National Team vs. Haiti
Cancun, Mexico
2010 CONCACAF Women’s World Cup Qualifying
Oct. 27, 2010

USA OPENS WOMEN’S WORLD CUP QUALIFYING AGAINST HAITI: The U.S. Women’s National Team will open the 2010 CONCACAF Women’s World Cup Qualifying tournament on Thursday, Oct. 28, against Haiti at Estadio Quintana Roo in Cancun, Mexico. The match kicks off at 7:30 p.m. local time (8:30 p.m. ET) and fans can watch live via a free video web stream on CONCACAF.com (the commentary will be in Spanish) and/or follow along on ussoccer.com’s MatchTracker. CONCACAF TV will stream every match of the Women’s World Cup Qualifying tournament. The U.S. heads into qualifying with a roster of 20 players, all of which are healthy and ready for selection, but head coach Pia Sundhage will name 18 to suit up for each match.

TOURNAMENT FORMAT: The 2010 CONCACAF Women’s World Cup qualifying tournament will be held from Oct. 28-Nov. 8 at two stadiums in Cancún, Mexico. The eight-team competition, 16-game, formerly known as the CONCACAF Women’s Gold Cup, will send both finalists to the 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Germany while the tournament’s third-place finisher will face the fifth place team from Europe in a home-and-home and series for a final World Cup berth. Italy defeated Switzerland, 1-0, in Italy during the first leg of the final playoff series in Europe. The USA’s Group B, which features also Haiti, Guatemala and Costa Rica, will play all of its matches at Estadio Quintana Roo, home stadium for Atlante of the Mexican First Division. Group A, which features host Mexico, Canada, Trinidad & Tobago and Guyana, will play at Estadio Beto Avila, home to the Quintana Roo Tigres of the Mexican baseball league. After group play, the top two countries in both groups will cross-over to meet in the all-important semifinals with the winner of Group A facing the second place team in Group B and vice-versa.

2010 CONCACAF Women’s World Cup Qualifying
Group B Schedule
Date                Opponent       Venue                                                  Web TV                        Kickoff
Oct. 28             Haiti                 Estadio Quintana Roo; Cancun, Mexico      CONCACAF.com           8:30 p.m. ET
Oct. 30             Guatemala        Estadio Quintana Roo; Cancun, Mexico      CONCACAF.com           8:30 p.m. ET
Nov. 1              Costa Rica        Estadio Quintana Roo; Cancun, Mexico      CONCACAF.com           9:30 p.m. ET

TIME CHANGE: After opening the tournament on Oct. 28 against Haiti, the U.S. face Guatemala on Oct. 30 and finish Group B play on Nov. 1 against Costa Rica. All the USA’s group matches will kick off at 7:30 p.m. local time. The matches on Oct. 28 and Oct. 30 are at 8:30 p.m. ET, but as Mexico falls back to Standard Time on Oct. 31 (and the United States does not change until Nov. 7), the USA’s match on Nov. 1 against Costa Rica will kick off at 9:30 p.m. ET.

U.S. WNT QUICK HITS:

  • Seven players on the USA’s 20-woman roster have previous experience in Women’s World Cup qualifying matches: Kristine Lilly (14 matches), Abby Wambach (3), Carli Lloyd (2), Heather Mitts (2), Heather O’Reilly (2), Christie Rampone (2) and Stephanie Cox (1).
  • Lilly’s 14 WWCQ appearances are most ever in U.S. history.
  • The USA has not played a Women’s World Cup qualifying match since Nov. 26, 2006.
  • The CONCACAF qualifying tournament for the 2007 FIFA Women’s World Cup consisted of just four teams. The USA defeated Mexico 2-0 at The Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif., in the semifinal to earn its berth to China and then defeated Canada, 2-1, in overtime to win the Confederation title.
  •  Just two players on the U.S. roster have scored in Women’s World Cup qualifying. Lilly has nine career goals and Wambach has found the net three times. 
  • Lilly’s nine WWCQ goals ranked her fourth all-time behind Michelle Akers (17), Mia Hamm (12) and Carin Gabarra (10).
  • The USA’s 24 goals this year have been scored by 10 different players – Abby Wambach (8), Lauren Cheney (5), Amy Rodriguez (2), Megan Rapinoe (2), Heather O’Reilly (2), Carli Lloyd, Kristine Lilly, Shannon Boxx and Alex Morgan, plus an own goal by Iceland in the Algarve Cup.
  • Goalkeeper Nicole Barnhart has never lost a match for the United States and is 14-0-3.
  • The next cap for Amy Rodriguez will be her 50th, something just 37 players have achieved in U.S. history. 
  • The next cap for Kristine Lilly will be her 350th, something no one has ever achieved before.
  • Since the end of the 2007 FIFA Women’s World Cup, the USA is 51-1-6.
  • The USA is 72-1-2 when Abby Wambach scores a goal.
  • Of Wambach’s 109 goals, 43 (40%) have been with her head.
  • 47 players have represented the U.S. WNT in World Cup qualifying.
  • The United States has won all four CONCACAF Women’s World Cup qualifying tournaments in which it has competed (1991, 1994, 2002 and 2006) with all four championship games featuring a USA vs. Canada match-up.
  • The USA has allowed 24 goals in 55 matches under Sundhage; 18 from the run of play, four from set plays and two on own goals.
  • The USA is 18-0-0 all-time in Women’s World Cup qualifying.
  • The U.S. roster features players from six of the seven WPS teams (with only Atlanta not represented). Sky Blue FC and the Boston Breakers have the most at four players each.

U.S. WNT QUALIFYING ROSTER BREAKDOWN
Average Age: 27.5        
Average Caps: 73         
Average caps not counting Kristine Lilly: 58
Average caps not counting Kristine Lilly and Christie Rampone: 49
Most Caps: 349 (Kristine Lilly)
Fewest Caps: 1 (Jill Loyden), 2 (Becky Sauerbrunn), 3 (Alex Morgan)
Oldest: 39 (Kristine Lilly)
Youngest: 21 (Alex Morgan) 

Play professionally in: United States (18), Germany (1), Play in college (1)

Hometown in: California (6), New Jersey (5), Indiana (2), Connecticut (1), Illinois (1), New York (1), Ohio (1), Missouri (1), Pennsylvania (1), Virginia (1)

HISTORY WITH HAITI: The USA and Haiti have met just twice at the senior women’s level, both times in CONCACAF qualifying tournaments. The first meeting was actually in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, during qualifying for the 1991 FIFA Women’s World Cup. The USA won 10-0 on April 25, 1991, and the list of goal scorers reads like a list of U.S legends: Joy Fawcett, Tracey Bates (2), Carin Jennings (2), Michelle Akers (2), April Heinrichs (2), and yes, one goal from Kristine Lilly, who is still going after all these years. The other meeting came on Feb. 27, 2004, in Heredia, Costa Rica during qualifying for the 2004 Olympics. The USA won 8-0 that day, and although Lilly was rested, Abby Wambach did score. Other players from the current U.S. roster that played that day are Heather Mitts, Amy LePeilbet and Shannon Boxx. The match was just LePeilbet’s second cap. She now has 37.

HOW HAITI GOT HERE: While the USA got an automatic berth into the final qualifying tournament, Haiti had to win five consecutive matches over two qualifying phases to earn its berth into the final eight. Haiti defeated Turks and Caicos by a 5-0 score on two goals from F. Hilaire and one each from Sophia Batard, Adeline Saintilmond and Wisline Dolce and also downed the Dominican Republic by a 2-1 score on goals from Dolce and Saintilmond. The two victories earned Haiti a spot in the second phase of Caribbean qualifying, where it defeated Antigua and Barbuda, 4-1, shutout Cuba, 3-0 and Puerto Rico, 2-0. Eight different players scored for Haiti in those three games, led by two goals from Manoucheka Pierre Louis.

Date                             Match-Up                                             Haiti Goal Scorers
March 28, 2010              Haiti 5, Turks and Caicos 0                       Dolce, Saintilmond, Batard, Hilaire (2)
March 30, 2010              Haiti 2, Dominican Republic 1                   Saintilmond, Dolce 
May 11, 2010                Haiti 4, Antigua and Barbuda 1                  Pierre Louis, Batard, Aristilde, Mathelier 
May 13, 2010                Haiti 3, Cuba 0                                         Charles, Boulos, Brand  
May 15, 2010                Haiti 2, Puerto Rico 0                                Saintilmond, Pierre Louis  

GIFTS FROM HOME: The island nation of Haiti is still recovering from the devastating earthquake of last January 12 that reduced much of the country to rubble and took an estimated 230,000 lives, injured more than 300,000 and left one million homeless. To do their small part to help the Haitians, each U.S. player brought extra soccer gear, cleats, clothes, toiletries and other comfort items to Mexico and the players will pass on the items to the Haitian players at some point during the tournament. Said U.S. defender Stephanie Cox: “Once you cross that line, you show respect to them by playing at your best and playing your hardest, but it doesn’t take away from knowing that off the field, you can recognize the grief that they’ve been going through and the struggle their country has been going through and give some of our compassion to them.”

U.S. WNT CONCACAF Women’s World Cup Qualifying Roster
GOALKEEPERS (2): 18-Nicole Barnhart (FC Gold Pride), 1-Jill Loyden (Chicago Red Stars)
DEFENDERS (7): 19-Rachel Buehler (FC Gold Pride), 14-Stephanie Cox (Boston Breakers), 16-Ali Krieger (FFC Frankfurt), 6-Amy LePeilbet (Boston Breakers), 2-Heather Mitts (Philadelphia Independence), 3-Christie Rampone (Sky Blue FC), 17-Becky Sauerbrunn (Washington Freedom)
MIDFIELDERS (7): 4-Yael Averbuch (Sky Blue FC), 7-Shannon Boxx (FC Gold Pride), 13-Kristine Lilly (Boston Breakers), 11-Lori Lindsey (Philadelphia Independence), 10-Carli Lloyd (Sky Blue FC), 9-Heather O’Reilly (Sky Blue FC), 15-Megan Rapinoe (Chicago Red Stars)
FORWARDS (4): 12-Lauren Cheney (Boston Breakers), 5-Alex Morgan (California), 8-Amy Rodriguez (Philadelphia Independence), 20-Abby Wambach (Washington Freedom)

WWC QUALIFYING EXPERIENCE: Just seven players have previously Women’s World Cup qualifying experience and just two have scored. Should Kristine Lilly play in this tournament, she will become the first player ever to play in five CONCACAF Women’s World Cup qualifying tournaments. Abby Wambach played just one game in qualifying for the 2003 Women’s World Cup. She was a late call-up to replace an injured player, played 90 minutes against Panama in a 9-0 win, scoring a goal, and then was sent home the next day due to a mistake by the organizers in the player replacement rules that allowed her added late to the roster. Wambach was the USA’s hero four years later, scoring both goals against Mexico in the all-important semifinal while playing on an injured ankle to send the USA to the 2007 FIFA Women’s World Cup.

World Cup Qualifying Appearances
2010 U.S. WNT Qualifying Roster
Player                                   Caps    Goals   Era
Cox, Stephanie (Lopez)             1          0          2006
Lilly, Kristine                            14        9          1991-2006
Lloyd, Carli                              2          0          2006
Mitts, Heather                          2          0          2006
O’Reilly, Heather                      2          0          2002-2006
Rampone, Christie (Pearce)       2          0          2006
Wambach, Abby                      3          3          2002-2006

THE PIA SUNDHAGE FACT FILE: Pia Sundhage has been the head coach of the United States for almost three years and during that time has compiled some impressive statistics. The USA has won six tournaments under Sundhage, including the 2008 Olympics. Since coaching her first game for the United States in January of 2008, Sundhage has compiled an overall record of 49-1-5 with the only loss in regulation time coming in the first game of the 2008 Olympics. Her winning percentage of (.936), as she goes for her 50th win at the helm of the United States, is the best-ever for a coach in U.S. Women’s National Team history.

U.S. WNT Record Under Pia
All-Time: 49-1-5
Olympic Qualifying: 3-0-1
Women’s World Cup Qualifying: 0-0-0
Goals For: 120
Goals Against: 24
Shutouts: 38

Record vs. …
CONCACAF: 12-0-1, 36 GF, 3 GA
CONMEBOL: 4-0-0, 4 GF, 0 GA
UEFA: 20-1-2, 47 GF, 9 GA
AFC: 12-0-2, 29 GF, 12 GA
CAF: 0-0-0, 0 GF, 0 GA
Oceania: 1-0-0, 4 GF, 0 GA

By year …
2008: 33-1-2
2009: 7-0-1
2010: 9-0-2

THE GOAL IS GERMANY: All eight teams at the 2010 CONCACAF Women’s World Cup qualifying tournament have their sites set on a coveted berth to the 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Germany. Hosting on their own soil the two-time defending champions will be favorites to hoist a third consecutive trophy and there is no doubt that the Germans will run a fantastic Women’s World Cup, scheduled for June 26-July 17 in nine cities spread out all over the country: Berlin, Frankfurt, Mönchengladbach, Sinsheim, Wolfsburg, Augsburg, Bochum, Dresden and Leverkusen. Almost all of the cities will host four matches, but unlike past Women’s World Cups, there will be no doubleheaders. The largest stadium is in Berlin (74,244), which will host just the opening game featuring the Germans. The smallest stadium is in Bochum, which seats 23,691. The Women’s World Cup Final will take place in Frankfurt (49,240) on July 17. So far, more than half of the field is set. The qualifiers so far are: host Germany, Korea DPR, Japan and Australia from Asia and Sweden, Norway, France and England from Europe and New Zealand from Oceania.

STUDIO 90 INCLUDING WAVES AND SAVES: If you haven’t been keeping up on your WNT video, there’s still time to catch up before the USA kicks off the CONCACAF Women’s World Cup qualifying tournament. You have your choice of a feature on beach training for the U.S. goalkeepers, a sit down with U.S. goalkeeper Nicole Barnhart and plenty of updates on Studio 90.

READ ALL ABOUT IT: As the USA prepares for its most important tournament since the 2008 Olympics, you can find out Becky Sauerbrunn’s thoughts on making the Women’s World Cup qualifying squad and read what forward Lauren Cheney has to say on a variety of topics as she answers 11 Questions for ussoccer.com.

EL BLOG: Iguanas, Mexican food, sand, surf and a whole lot of soccer practice. We got it all for you as we cover the goings on of the U.S. WNT at CONCACAF Women’s World Cup qualifying via the WNT Blog.

FOLLOW THE WNT ON TWITTER: Keep up with all U.S. women’s National Team news (in short form, of course) by following at www.twitter.com/ussoccer_wnt

STAT OF NOTE
The U.S. Women’s National Team has played 12 matches in its history against Caribbean nations. Of those, seven have been against Trinidad & Tobago. T&T is the only Caribbean nation to have scored on the USA and also owns the best result, a 3-1 loss in 1994.

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