DiCicco Announces 1999 U.S. Women's World Cup Team; Six Players will Appear in their Third World Cup Tournament
CHICAGO (Monday, May 17, 1999) - United States Women's National Team Head Coach Tony DiCicco announced his 20-player 1999 FIFA Women's World Cup Team today during a press conference at NIKETOWN Chicago. DiCicco was not required to name his roster until June 9, when all 16 Women's World Cup Teams must submit their official squads to FIFA, but he will now have a month to prepare his complete Women's World Cup team. The USA opens play on June 19 against Denmark at Giants Stadium (Kickoff is 3 p.m. ET -- LIVE on ABC).
The U.S. World Cup Team will feature six players that were a part of the team that won the first-ever Women's World Cup in China in 1991. All six also played on the 1995 Women's World Cup Team that finished third in Sweden. Six players will be playing in their second Women's World Cup, including Brandi Chastain, who played in '91 but was not on the roster in '95, while eight players are on the Women's World Cup roster for the first time. The U.S. team also features 13 of the 16 members of the 1996 Olympic Team that won the gold medal.
"The naming of this team was a three-year process," said DiCicco. "These players were tested and challenged and proved themselves in a process that started the day after the Olympics. For the players that will be playing in their third World Cup, making this team is a testament to their dedication to their sport and their commitment to evolve as players, as well as their relationships on and off the field. For the younger players that are making the World Cup team for the first time, they forced these veterans to reach new heights and helped make us the best possible team we can be. I'm proud of each of every one of them and my thoughts go out to the players that were on the short side of our decisions. I know some of those players will be key to our future."
The U.S. World Cup Team features eight players who have played 115 or more international matches, but has an average age of 24.5 years. The U.S. team averages 87 caps per player.
|United States 1999 Women's World Cup Team|
|1||Scurry, Briana**||GK||5-8||145||9/7/71||Dayton, Minn.||UMass.||88|
|2||Fair, Lorrie*||D||5-3||125||8/5/78||Los Altos, Ca.||UNC||46/1|
|3||Pearce, Christie*||D||5-6||140||6/24/75||Pt. Pleasant, N.J.||Monmouth||48/2|
|4||Overbeck, Carla***||D||5-7||125||5/9/68||Chapel Hill, N.C.||UNC||142/7|
|5||Roberts, Tiffany**||M||5-4||120||5/5/77||San Ramon, Ca.||UNC||71/6|
|6||Chastain, Brandi**||D||5-7||130||7/21/68||San Jose, Ca.||Santa Clara||92/20|
|7||Whalen, Sara*||D||5-5||130||4/28/76||Greenlawn, N.Y.||UConn||32/2|
|8||MacMillan, Shannon*||F||5-5||130||10/7/74||Escondido, Ca.||Portland||76/19|
|9||Hamm, Mia***||F||5-5||130||3/17/72||Chapel Hill, N.C.||UNC||171/107|
|10||Akers, Michelle***||M||5-10||150||2/1/66||Oviedo, Fla.||UCF||139/102|
|11||Foudy, Julie***||M||5-6||130||1/23/71||Mission Viejo, Ca.||Stanford||152/30|
|12||Parlow, Cindy*||F||5-11||145||5/08/78||Memphis, Tenn.||UNC||53/20|
|13||Lilly, Kristine***||M||5-4||130||7/22/71||Wilton, Conn.||UNC||177/71|
|14||Fawcett, Joy***||D||5-5||130||2/8/68||Hunt. Beach, Ca.||UCB||139/18|
|15||Venturini, Tisha**||M||5-6||125||3/3/73||Modesto, Ca.||UNC||121/41|
|16||Milbrett, Tiffeny**||F||5-2||125||10/23/72||Portland, Ore.||Portland||115/56|
|17||Fotopoulos, Danielle*||F||5-11||165||3/24/76||Alt. Springs, Fla.||Florida||21/7|
|18||Webber, Saskia**||GK||5-9||145||6/13/71||Princeton, N.J.||Rutgers||25|
|19||Ducar, Tracy*||GK||5-7||135||6/18/73||N. Andover, Mass.||UNC||23|
|20||Sobrero, Kate*||D||5-9||140||8/23/76||Bloomfield Hills, Mich.||ND||23/0|
Note: ***Third World Cup Team
#1 -- BRIANA SCURRY (Goalkeeper): The USA's starting goalkeeper for both the 1995 FIFA Women's World Cup and the 1996 Olympics will once again step between the pipes this summer. Scurry has six shutouts in 1999, upping her career total to 49, by far a U.S. team record. Known for her calmness under pressure, Scurry is one of the most athletic goalkeepers in the world. Blessed with great leaping ability and great hands, Scurry's play will be key for to USA success this summer.
#2 -- LORRIE FAIR (Defender): The youngest player on the World Cup Team, and the only player that still has college eligibility remaining, she will play her senior season at UNC next fall. One of the most skillful players on the team and great in the air for her size, Fair is battling with several others for playing time on the USA's back line in both the central defense or outside fullback, but can also step into midfield. A veteran of the national team program at only 20 years old, she is no doubt a star for the future, and maybe the present.
#3 -- CHRISTIE PEARCE (Defender): One of the best athletes on the U.S. team and the only player on the roster from a small soccer school, the former college basketball point guard missed games during her senior hoops season at Monmouth in New Jersey for a no-guarantees trial with the national team. Unlike the vast majority of players who get tryouts, she stuck and has compiled nearly 50 caps since debuting in the beginning of 1997. One of the USA's fastest players with a 30-inch vertical leap, she is competing with several other players for a starting spot at outside fullback.
#4 -- CARLA OVERBECK (Defender): The USA's captain is as tough as they come and will wear the band in her third consecutive world championship and her last Women's World Cup. A tremendous header of the ball, the USA's field leader is as comfortable playing with three or four defenders in the back and her experience will be key in the USA's run through the Women's World Cup. While rare to see, she is effective when attacking and is a key component on set plays, both on offense and defense.
#5 -- TIFFANY ROBERTS (Midfielder): The diminutive midfielder was a starter at right midfield at the 1995 Women's World Cup but now comes off the bench. DiCicco values her world class tenaciousness and work rate, as well as her ability to nullify most any opponent one-on-one. With great strength and speed for her size, she is a relentless chaser and nasty tackler. At age 22, she has compiled 71 caps since coming onto the team in 1994 just before her 17th birthday.
#6 -- BRANDI CHASTAIN (Defender): The USA's Ms. Versatile, Chastain played forward on the 1991 Women's World Cup Team, was left off the 1995 Women's World Cup Team, but was resurrected at outside fullback for the 1996 Olympics. More recently, she has seen time at holding midfielder and attacking midfielder in the USA's 4-3-3 formation, but has since settled into the outside left fullback position. Where she will land at the Women's World Cup, only Tony DiCicco knows, but Chastain fits as several pieces into his lineup puzzle.
#7 -- SARA WHALEN (Defender): The speedy Whalen has worked hard to improve her game over the past year and saw time on all three lines at the Algarve Cup last March. That versatility and speed won her a spot on the 1999 Women's World Cup Team, but she excels at outside fullback, where she can use her speed and work rate to make an impact on both ends of the field. Whalen has stepped up her game in latter part of residency camp and perhaps sealed her spot on the team with a brilliant goal against Japan on May 2 after a 50-yard solo, dribbling run.
#8 -- SHANNON MACMILLAN (Forward): The USA's Olympic hero has found her form again, having scored five goals with five assists on the year. A devastating dribbler who possesses one of the hardest shots on the team, she has seen time both at striker in the 4-3-3 formation and at right midfield in the 3-4-3. Her ability to attack from several positions means DiCicco wants her in Olympic form by the time the Women's World Cup begins.
#9 -- MIA HAMM (Forward): The world's leading scorer has been heavily marked this year, but still has punched in six goals and a team-leading nine assists. At the peak of her game, she will be counted to score and create this summer. Hamm scored two goals in both the 1991 and '95 Women's World Cup and may be the most recognized female soccer player in the world.
#10 -- MICHELLE AKERS (Midfielder): The 1991 Women's World Cup leading scorer heads into her third and last Women's World Cup. A thundering center-forward in '91, she dominated the Women's World Cup in China to earn the Golden Boot. Akers changed roles in the lead-up to the 1996 Olympics, dropping into midfield where her playmaking skills and composure with the ball could be more utilized while the beatings she took every game playing with her back to the goal would be greatly reduced. The USA now utilizes her superior feel for the game to establish rhythm, and her unparalleled talent to shoot from distance on offense, as well as her dominance in the air on defense, winning the vast majority of punts and clearances in the middle of the field. Her strong tackling and presence in the penalty box on crossed balls still make her one of the most impactful players in the world.
#11 -- JULIE FOUDY (Midfielder): The USA's co-captain has thrived after her position change in the midfield, moving from a defensive role into an offensive one. Her attacking skills are adding punch to the forwards and her goal scoring has been the best of her career. A starter in both the 1991 and 1995 Women's World Cup, she will enter her third tournament as the third most-capped player in the world.
#12 -- CINDY PARLOW (Forward): The 5-foot-11 striker may be a key to the USA's success in the Women's World Cup. She is adept at holding the ball on the forward line, battles for all air balls and is deadly in the penalty box. With Hamm and Milbrett's slashing runs in the offensive third, Parlow's ability to combine with them, as well as run at the goal herself, gives the USA a devastating combination of speed and power on the forward line. Hampered by a hamstring injury since the end of her college season, with a healthy leg, she may become one of the stars of USA '99.
#13 -- KRISTINE LILLY (Midfielder/Forward): The world's all-time leader in international appearances with 177, she continues to put the record into the stratosphere. The USA's left-footed, left-sided midfielder/forward, has established herself as one of the top players in the world with consistently stellar and dynamic play and leads the team in goal scoring this year with 10. Her 71 goals for the national team are good for third all-time. Lilly has started an amazing 172 of the 177 games she has played for the USA, missing only nine matches during that span, and has played the full 90 minutes in an astounding 144 of those games. She has played in 88% of the matches ever played by the national team.
#14 -- JOY FAWCETT (Defender): Tagged as the best defender in the world, Fawcett is a genius at diffusing dangerous situations and is also one of the world's best attackers from the back. She has been going forward much more as a flank defender in the USA's 4-3-3 formation, but has also stepped into a role in the midfield on occasion. A prime example of the complete package and of the USA's ability to attack from every position on the field, Fawcett will be a key to the USA's success on both ends of the field this summer.
#15 -- TISHA VENTURINI (Midfielder): Scorer of the USA's first goals in the both the 1995 Women's World Cup and the 1996 Olympics, Venturini has come off the bench for most of 1999 but adds invaluable depth and experience at the attacking midfielder position. She has five goals in two world championships and has scored three in her last four games. A tremendously skillful player, she is one of the best headers in the world on both offense and defense.
#16 -- TIFFENY MILBRETT (Forward): On April 29 against Japan, Milbrett became just the second player in Women's National Team history to score four goals in a match. Milbrett, who also picked up two assists, tied Michelle Akers, Brandi Chastain and Mia Hamm for most points in a game with 10. She also moved into 4th place on the all-time scoring list and has 56 career goals and is the USA's leading scorer with 9 goals and 8 assists. She had a four-goal/tournament MVP performance at the Algarve Cup in March and her dynamic, break-neck dribbling style have made her a favorite of fans wherever she plays.
#17 -- DANIELLE FOTOPOULOS (Forward): The 5-foot-11 forward is deceptively fast and skillful for her size and broke one of college soccer's most hallowed records this past season, shattering the NCAA goal scoring mark. She finished her four-year collegiate career (two years at SMU and the two at Florida) with 118 goals, including the game-winner in the Gators 1-0 upset of North Carolina in the NCAA championship game. Her final goal total demolished the NCAA all-time scoring record of 103 set by fellow National Team teammates Mia Hamm (North Carolina) and Tiffeny Milbrett (Portland). Her strength and physical attributes are unmatched in world women's soccer and her thirst for goals will serve the USA well off the bench in its run to a Women's World Cup title.
#18 -- SASKIA WEBBER (Goalkeeper): The back-up on the 1995 Women's World Cup Team played one World Cup match against Australia, but was dropped from the team for Olympic residency camp. She re-emerged to earn a spot as an alternate on the Olympic Team and now has worked her way up the back-up goalkeeper position. Already tremendously athletic, she dedicated herself to working on her mental as well as physical game has played well this year, allowing just one goal in 270 minutes.
#19 -- TRACY DUCAR (Goalkeeper): Possesses the best kicking game of the goalkeepers and has seen action against some of the top teams in the world including Germany and Brazil. Has a great work ethic and has overcome the injury problems that kept her out of the mix for the Olympics to earn a spot as a back-up on the Women's World Cup Team.
#20 -- KATE SOBRERO (Defender): An intense and physical defender, she came back from a broken jaw suffered in a gruesome collision with U.S. 'keeper Tracy Ducar at a training camp in January of 1998 to become a consistent starter for the USA in the central defense. She has started 10 of the USA's 14 games this year and put in a world class performance against Norway at the Algarve Cup, shutting down star striker Marianne Pettersen. If the USA has a "hard-woman," Sobrero is it, adding toughness and tenacity to an already active and athletic U.S. back line.