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JK Q&A: MNT Ends 2015 on a High, Confident in Deep Player Pool Ahead of Busy 2016

With the 2015 slate now over for the U.S. Men’s National Team, Jurgen Klinsmann sat down with for a two-part Q&A. In Part One, the MNT boss discusses the team’s accomplishments, player progression and lessons learned in 2015. Part Two of the Q&A in which Klinsmann previews the challenges and excitement of a busy 2016 calendar for the MNT will be available on in the coming days. Going into Port of Spain, Trinidad to face the Soca Warriors was a tough match. Are you pleased with how the team dealt with the challenges of that game on the road?

Jurgen Klinsmann: “I think with the game in Trinidad & Tobago, we all knew it was going to be a tricky one. It’s a good team that proved that in the Gold Cup. And away from home, there’s a rule: don’t lose. At least get one point and don’t give the home team the three points. I think we achieved that. Did we want to win both games? Yes, it would have been nice to have six points now, but four points is ideal going into the two games now with Guatemala. Winning those two games would mean that we are qualified for the next round, so our big goal for March is going to Guatemala and get three points right away, at home in Columbus, one of our favorite places to go, and then look forward to the next round.” Throughout the first two qualifiers you were able to get a lot of young players opportunities. How valuable was it to get them that experience at this stage?

JK: “For coaches, but also for the fans, one fascinating topic is always, ‘how do young players progress? How do they learn? How fast do they learn? How fast they can make a real improvement on the senior National Team?’ When you talk about young players, we talk about DeAndre Yedlin, we talk about Gyasi Zardes. Both of them had a very busy 2015. Gyasi played 19 games for the MNT, which is pretty amazing, but the most important part there is that everybody can see a learning curve. Everybody can that they are maturing. Everybody can see that they are growing and becoming senior players. This is what this path is about, bringing younger players, give them time and give them moments where they don’t perform or have a bad game and carry them through. Teach them during this path and what they have to improve and hopefully see the benefit later on. At the end of 2015 we saw a lot of good answers from Gyasi Zardes and DeAndre Yedlin and I’m sure we will see even more good stuff in the upcoming year.” Bobby Wood finished with four goals in his last eight games. What changes have you seen in him in the last year?

JK: “With Bobby Wood, we’ve developed a player over some time. Even if he wasn’t a full part of the National Team program yet, we were in touch with him, following his path in Germany in the 2. Bundesliga. We explained to him that it’s not going to all happen in a short period of time. When he came in the first couple of times, he was shy and nervous, which is totally normal for the young players when they join the senior National Team. He had to get a feel for the thin air on the higher level. He tried to learn as quickly as he could. He developed more personality, more confidence. For a striker, confidence is always connected to scoring goals. After the first couple of games came the moment when he came on the field against Holland and in the last minute scored the winning goal for us, which was huge, not because you beat Holland in their own country, but it was huge for him that he started to believe in himself. A couple days later he scores the winning goal against Germany in Germany where he plays, which is another big confidence booster. He’s becoming used to the pressure, the expectations of scoring. The expectations for a forward are to score, not every game, but try to score every second game or at the very least every third game. This is his learning curve now and hopefully he keeps learning, keeps improving, keeps helping us and keep on going through that transition of a World Cup cycle between the two World Cups.” In these last two games you also expanded the team’s options at key positions, including both fullback spots. What type of flexibility does this provide moving forward?

JK: “2015 made it clear that we struggled in a couple of areas. The most difficult area for us is the fullback positions. We moved the center backs to the fullback position. We moved Fabian Johnson from left back to right back, which is the position he played in the World Cup – and was probably one of the best right backs in the World Cup in Brazil last year. But he ended up in his club team in Germany playing left winger. So moving him constantly from left winger to left back or to right back, it doesn’t really help him. And for us, one question remains: how do we fill in those left back and right back positons with a high-quality solution? In the last games, we had Tim Ream helping us out as a left back. He plays center back in Fulham. We had Michael Orozco out as a right back, which he did tremendously well, but he’s playing center back for Tijuana. Hopefully in 2016 it will help us develop younger players in the fullback positions. For us, the next important team to look at is the Olympic team and see what Andi Herzog brings through that team in order to develop a younger player into that full back position for the senior team.” A lot of people had positive things to say about Darlington Nagbe. What did you learn about him from this camp?

JK: “We found a player that is really good handling the ball in both directions. He is responsible defensively, to always go behind the ball and to defend, and help out. When we go forward, he knows when to pass, when to dribble, when to keep things racing forward, and also when to take some risks in a certain moment. He has a change of pace in one-on-one situations when he goes at defensive midfielders. He has the confidence to get past them and to get closer to the box. Darlington is a real nice option now going forward. He had to wait a long time, and we’ve been waiting for him as well, but it’s a great fit and we are glad to have him on board.” You spoke of the importance of having Brad Guzan and Tim Howard on board for the next three years. How did the initial phase of rotation work out?

JK: “Having Tim Howard and Brad Guzan on board is huge. Both are top goalkeepers in the English Premiere League, very experienced and especially they are great teammates. We’ve got to keep them rotating toward Russia 2018. Then we’ve got to make some decisions once games come up, but having both of them gives us a huge boost of confidence and the backline feels real confident having one of them in goal.” The challenge to younger players has been to push the established guys for starting spots. What is the importance of that process and how has it gone within the team?

JK: “When asking the younger players to step up and challenge the experienced ones, you want them to challenge themselves on a higher level, whether it’s going to the highest club level as quickly as you can and become a starter there and make your statement, like DeAndre Yedlin does now at Sunderland. In camp, we want them to fight harder to push established players for the spots, because if you want to steal the spot, you have to do more to try and move him out. This is an interesting process between two World Cups. Taking the example of Jones, he’s not ready to give his spot up. He’s 34 years old, but he’s a rock. He’s in there every time it matters, he stands his man. He makes it clear to the younger players that he’s not giving up his spot. These kind of competitions are real important with the team.” How do you view the midfield partnership between Michael Bradley and Jermaine Jones?

JK: “It’s real critical between Bradley and Jones, like all the fans know, they are important to our team. These two always coordinate themselves on the field. They are experienced and know what to do in specific situations. We constantly go over their tactical approach in a game because they can play many different ways. Now you can complement a Jermaine Jones or a Michael Bradley with a more defensive midfielder, like a Kyle Beckerman, or you can complement them with more offensive midfielders, like a Darlington Nagbe or Mix Diskerud. But the heart of this team is always in the center of the park, which is Bradley and Jones.” What did you see from Jozy Altidore throughout 2015?

JK: “2015 for Jozy Altidore has been a transition year, but it has become a year where he has gotten stronger toward the end. He had some injury issues. He had some fitness issues in the beginning of the year. We had the episode in the Gold Cup where he was not in the shape where he needed to be. Toward July, August and September he got more into a flow. He started to score goals for Toronto and he got stronger for the National Team, as well. This is a very positive sign for us to have Altidore playing well. We plan to bring him into a very busy 2016 with the biggest highlight of Copa America next June.” What has been your impression of the MLS playoffs?

JK: “Watching the MLS playoffs has been tremendously exciting. The games in the first round with the penalty shootout, to Portland and Kansas City, to games that were very close, very tight and hard fought. It’s been very exciting. The stadiums are packed, the fans are fully engaged and the teams battle themselves through. Sometimes you have your favorite pick then you realize after a game or two, your favorite is not there anymore and out of the playoffs. It’s at another level this year and I can’t wait to see the MLS Cup final!”

U-20 WNT Head Coach Michelle French Names Roster for Womens World Cup Qualifying

CHICAGO (Nov. 25, 2015) – U.S. Under-20 Women’s National Team head coach Michelle French has named the 20-player roster for the 2015 CONCACAF Women’s U-20 Championship, to be held from Dec. 3-13 in San Pedro Sula, Honduras.

The roster is made up of eight collegiate players and 12 high-school aged players who are still playing youth club soccer. The roster ranges over four birth years from 1996-1999 with the youngest player being 16-year-old defender Kiara Pickett. Players born on or after January 1, 1996, are eligible for the 2016 U-20 Women’s World Cup.

"While finalizing the roster for this qualifying competition posed different challenges due to the college season, we are very happy with the players we have named to the roster. We have a great mix of talent, sophistication, and athleticism at every position,” said U.S. head coach Michelle French. “The group is comprised of players with experience in CONCACAF competitions, as well as quite a few who will be playing matches of this magnitude for the first time. As a result, we are looking forward to watching the team grow during the tournament.”

Roster by Position: Detailed Roster   
GOALKEEPERS (2): Rose Chandler (Penn State; Atlanta, Ga.), Brooke Heinsohn (New England FC; Norfolk, Mass.)
DEFENDERS (7): Tierna Davidson (De Anza Force; Menlo Park; Calif.), Sabrina Flores (Notre Dame; Livingston, N.J.), Emily Fox (FC Virginia; Ashburn, Va.), Shannon Horgan (Clemson; Long Beach, N.Y.), Natalie Jacobs (Notre Dame; Coto de Caza; Calif.), Taylor Otto (CASL; Apex, N.C.), Kiara Pickett (Eagles; Santa Barbara, Calif.)
MIDFIELDERS (7): Marley Canales (San Diego Surf; San Diego, Calif.), Savannah DeMelo (Beach FC; Bellflower, Calif.), Jordan Harr (Dallas Sting; Sachse, Texas), Mikaela Harvey (Texas A&M; Liberty Hill, Texas), Kelcie Hedge (Washington; Post Falls, Idaho), Parker Roberts (Kansas; Leawood, Kan.), Ella Stevens (GSA; Grayson, Ga.)
FORWARDS (4): Mallory Pugh (Real Colorado; Highlands Ranch, Colo.), Zoe Redei (Eclipse Soccer Club; Highland Park, Ill.), Ashley Sanchez (SoCal Blues; Monrovia, Calif.), Jessie Scarpa (UNC; Lakeland, Fla.)

The 2015 CONCACAF Women's U-20 Championship features eight nations divided into two groups of four teams. The top two finishers in each group will qualify for the tournament semifinals, with the winners of those games along with the winner of the third-place match earning berths to the 2016 FIFA U-20 Women's World Cup in Papua New Guinea.

The competition will be played at Francisco Morazan Stadium and Olympic Stadium. The USA will play all its Group B games at Olympic Stadium and opens the tournament on Friday, Dec. 4, against Mexico (7:30 local/8:30 ET on FOX Sports 2), faces Panama on Sunday, Dec. 6 (7:30 local/8:30 ET on FOX Soccer Plus) and finishes group play against Haiti on Tuesday, Dec. 8 (7:30 local/8:30 ET on FOX Soccer Plus).

"We had the opportunity to see a number of players over the past few months, and those players certainly did a fantastic job of making the final roster decisions difficult, which is what we want to see,” said French, who saw 57 players in game action this year with the U-20s and many more during college matches this fall. “Our goal was to find the right mix of players available for selection that complemented each other on and off the field. I’m confident we have done that.”

2015 CONCACAF Women’s U-20 Championship Group B Schedule - USA

Date                Match                          Kickoff (CT)   Venue                          TV
Dec. 4              USA vs. Mexico         7:30 p.m.         Olympic Stadium        FOX Sports 2
Dec. 6              USA vs. Panama         7:30 p.m.         Olympic Stadium        FOX Soccer Plus
Dec. 8              USA vs. Haiti             7:30 p.m.         Olympic Stadium        FOX Soccer Plus 

Additional Notes:

  • French, a member of the USA’s silver medal winning team at the 2000 Olympics in Australia, became head coach of this age group in February of 2013 and coached the USA to the championship of the last CONCACAF U-20 qualifying tournament in the Cayman Islands that earned the USA a trip to the last U-20 World Cup in Canada.
  • Goalkeeper Rose Chandler and forward Mallory Pugh are the only two players on the roster who were on the U.S. team at the 2014 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup.
  • Pugh was a starter in all four games the USA played in Canada in 2014 and is the only player on the roster with World Cup experience.
  • Six-foot-one goalkeeper Brooke Heinsohn is the granddaughter of Boston Celtics legend Tommy Heinsohn.
  • Chandler, who is currently the back-up ‘keeper at Penn State, where she has played in five matches off the bench this year, is one of two players on the roster whose college team is still in contention in the NCAA Playoffs.
  • The other is Texas A&M forward Michaela Harvey, who will join the U.S. team in Honduras upon completion of her college season.
  • Of the eight college players on the roster, four are freshmen (Chandler is a red-shirt freshman) and four have played two years of college soccer in Harvey, Clemson sophomore defender Shannon Horgan, Notre Dame sophomore defender Sabrina Flores and UNC sophomore forward Jessie Scarpa.
  • The freshmen are: Chandler, Natalie Jacobs (Notre Dame), Parker Roberts (Kansas) and Kelcie Hedge (Washington).
  • Six players on the roster were a part of the U.S. U-17 WNT that failed to qualify for the 2014 FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup after falling to Mexico in penalty kicks during the semifinal at the qualifying tournament in Jamaica despite dominating the match. Those players are midfielder Marley Canales (San Diego Surf), Hedge, Jacobs, defender Taylor Otto (CASL), Pugh (Real Colorado) and forward Zoe Redei (Eclipse).
  • Two players -- Chandler and Horgan -- have yet to earn a cap at the U-20 level.
  • Pugh is the leading U-20 cap-winner and scorer on the roster with 14 and six respectively. Savannah DeMelo (Beach FC) and Canales have seven U-20 caps each.
  • Two players are age-eligible for the U.S. U-17 Women’s National Tea in defender Kiara Pickett (5 caps for the U-17s this year) and forward Ashley Sanchez (six caps and 11 goals for the U-17s this year).
  • The 20 players on the roster come from 20 different youth clubs in 13 different states. There are five players from Southern California on the roster and one from Northern California, two from Georgia and two from Texas.
  • In addition to the three U.S. group matches, the FOX family of networks will air Mexico vs. Haiti on Dec. 6 (6 p.m. ET on FOX Soccer Plus) and Mexico vs. Panama on Dec. 8 (6 p.m. ET on FOX Soccer Plus).
  • Both semifinals (Dec. 11 at 6 and 9 p.m. ET), the third-place match (Dec. 13 at 6 p.m. ET) and the championship match (Dec. 13 at 9 p.m. ET) will also air on FOX Sports 2.
  • Host Honduras, Canada, Trinidad & Tobago and Jamaica are in Group A.

Schedule Set for 2015 Nike International Friendlies and Development Academy Winter Showcase

CHICAGO (Nov. 24, 2015) – The 2015 Nike International Friendlies and U.S. Soccer Development Academy Winter Showcase will take place at Premier Sports Campus in Lakewood Ranch, Florida, from Dec. 2-7.

During the competition, the U.S. Under-15 Boys’ National Team (’00) will take on teams from Brazil, England and the Netherlands. The U-15 BNT and its opponents consist of players born in the year 2000 or after, who will aim to represent their countries at the 2017 FIFA U-17 World Cup in India. Led by head coach John Hackworth, the USA’s roster for the tournament will be released in the coming days. 

The tournament will feature three doubleheaders, with the USA playing in the later game of each match day. The U.S. is set to play England on Dec. 2, the Netherlands on Dec. 4 and will round out the competition against Brazil on Dec. 6.

All matches will be streamed on and U.S. Soccer’s YouTube page with Mike Pepper again providing commentary for a third year running. The first game of each match day will kick-off at 3 p.m. ET with the USA game following at 6 p.m. ET.

The Academy Winter Showcase will again simultaneously take place alongside the Nike Friendlies. The U-17/18 teams of BW Gottschee and Chargers Soccer Club will compete on Dec. 3 at 3 p.m. ET, and the Philadelphia Union U-15/16 will play against LA Galaxy U-15/16 on Dec. 5 at 3 p.m. ET.

The Nike Friendlies began in 2001 to provide top-level competition for men’s Youth National Teams, and has become a premier annual event for youth soccer. In 2008, U.S. Soccer’s Development Academy joined for the Winter Showcase, allowing the U.S. Scouting Network to evaluate players from across the country at different age levels.

2015 Nike International Friendlies and DA Winter Showcase Viewing Schedule

Wednesday, Dec. 2
Netherlands vs. Brazil, 3 p.m. ET
USA vs. England, 6 p.m. ET

Thursday, Dec. 3
BW Gottschee U-17/18 vs. Chargers Soccer Club U-17/18, 3 p.m. ET

Friday, Dec. 4
Brazil vs. England, 3 p.m. ET
USA s. Netherlands, 6 p.m. ET

Saturday, Dec. 5
Philadelphia Union U-15/16 vs. LA Galaxy U-15/16, 3 p.m. ET

Sunday, Dec. 6
England vs. Netherlands, 3 p.m. ET
USA vs. Brazil, 6 p.m. ET

WNT Brings 28-Player Roster for Final Matches of 2015 Victory Tour

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

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)

Additional Notes:

  • 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.




MNT to Play FIFA World Cup Qualifier in Columbus Against Guatemala in March

CHICAGO (Nov. 23, 2015) – The U.S. Men’s National Team will return to MAPFRE Stadium in Columbus, Ohio, to play its second home match of 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifying on March 29 against Guatemala. 

The match will be televised live on ESPN2 and UniMas. Ticketing information will be provided at a later date.

Home of Major League Soccer’s Columbus Crew SC, few venues have provided as much of a home-field advantage as MAPFRE Stadium. Since first opening in 1999, the MNT has gone 7-0-3 all-time and 6-0-2 in eight World Cup Qualifying matches at the venue. Most notably, the site has played host to four straight World Cup Qualifiers against Mexico, each finishing with the famous “Dos a Cero” score line.

The match will occur four days after the U.S. plays their third game of the Semifinal Round against Guatemala at Estadio Mateo Flores in Guatemala City. The U.S. is 15-4-6 all-time against Guatemala, with a 13-0-1 record on home soil and 7-0-5 mark against the Chapines in World Cup qualifiers. The U.S. will enter the match with a 25-game unbeaten streak against Guatemala dating back to 1988, which is the longest run the MNT currently has against any opponent worldwide.

The U.S. began the six-match Semifinal Round of 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifying with a 6-1 victory against St. Vincent & the Grenadines on Nov. 13 in St. Louis, followed by a 0-0 draw at Trinidad & Tobago in Port of Spain on Nov. 17. 

Schedule Set for 2016 CONCACAF Women’s Olympic Qualifying Championship in Texas

CHICAGO (Nov. 23, 2015) – The schedule for the 2016 CONCACAF Women’s Olympic Qualifying Championship has been set after the Final Draw held in Miami today and the U.S. Women’s National Team will open its Group A play against Costa Rica on Wednesday, Feb. 10 at 7:30 p.m. CT.

The two venues for the competition are BBVA Compass Stadium, home to the Houston Dash of the NWSL and the Houston Dynamo of MLS, and Toyota Stadium, located in the Dallas suburb of Frisco and home to FC Dallas of MLS.

The round-robin stage of the tournament will be conducted with three doubleheaders in each group. Group A will play doubleheaders at Toyota Stadium on Feb. 10, 13 and 15 and Group B – which features Canada, Guatemala, Trinidad & Tobago and Guyana – will play doubleheaders at BBVA Compass Stadium on Feb. 11, 14 and 16. The all-important semifinal matches will be on Feb. 19 in Houston, with the winners qualifying for the 2016 Olympics in Brazil. The championship game on Feb. 21 will also be in Houston.

After opening against Costa Rica, the USA will then face Mexico on Saturday, Feb. 13 (3 p.m. CT) and finish group play against Puerto Rico on Monday, Feb. 15 (7:30 p.m. CT).

“It’s great for CONCACAF that we’ve got new participants in the qualifying and it bodes well for our region that other countries are developing the women’s game,” said U.S. head coach Jill Ellis. “In our group, we’ve got two very familiar opponents in Costa Rica and Mexico and we’ll have to be well-prepared as they are both coming off World Cup runs and have experienced teams.”

Ticket and TV information will be released at a later date.

The U.S. will attempt to qualify for a sixth consecutive Olympic Games and win the CONCACAF Women’s Olympic Qualifying event for the fourth consecutive time. In 2012, the USA won the Olympic Qualifying tournament in Vancouver, B.C. (on the same field where it would win the Women’s World Cup three years later) and then went on to win the gold medal in London.

In 2008, the USA won the Olympic Qualifying Tournament in Mexico and went on to win gold in Beijing. In 2004, the U.S. won the tournament in Costa Rica and went on to win gold in Athens, Greece. The U.S. qualified for the 1996 Atlanta Games as host and for the 2000 Sydney Games as a top-seven finisher at the 1999 FIFA Women’s World Cup.

Four teams have already qualified for the 12-team Olympic Football Tournament: Brazil and Colombia from South America, and France and Germany from Europe by virtue of their finish at the 2015 Women’s World Cup. Two teams will qualify from CONCACAF, Africa and Asia and one more will qualify from Europe after a mini-tournament in March featuring Sweden, Netherlands, Norway and Switzerland. New Zealand is the likely qualifier from Oceania.

The USA has played Costa Rica 10 times in its history, seven of those meetings coming in CONCACAF Qualifying competitions and three in Olympic qualifiers. The most recent meeting in Olympic qualifying came in January of 2012 as the USA defeated Costa Rica, 3-0, in the semifinal of the tournament to qualify for the London Olympics. The USA has never lost to Costa Rica.

The USA and Mexico have met 33 times, four of those coming in Olympic qualifying tournaments. At 2012 Olympic qualifying the USA prevailed 4-0 during group play as Carli Lloyd scored her first career hat trick. The USA is 31-1-1 all-time against Mexico. The U.S. Women have never before faced Puerto Rico, which will be participating in its first women’s CONCACAF qualifying tournament at the senior level.

U.S. head coach Jill Ellis will hold a training camp in January at the U.S. Soccer National Training Center in Carson, Calif., from which she will pick her 20-player Olympic qualifying roster. 

2016 CONCACAF Women’s Olympic Qualifying
Frisco, Texas – Toyota Stadium
Houston, Texas – BBVA Compass Stadium
Times U.S. Central (U.S. Eastern in parentheses) 

Group A: USA, Puerto Rico, Mexico, Costa Rica
Group B: Canada, Guatemala, Trinidad & Tobago, Guyana 

Wednesday, Feb. 10 (Frisco)
Puerto Rico vs. Mexico                                   5 p.m. (6 p.m.)
USA vs. Costa Rica                                           7:30 p.m. (8:30 p.m.) 

Thursday, Feb. 11 (Houston)
Guatemala vs. Trinidad & Tobago                  5 p.m. (6 p.m.)
Canada vs. Guyana                                           7:30 p.m. (8:30 p.m.)

Saturday, Feb. 13 (Frisco)
Costa Rica vs. Puerto Rico                              12:30 p.m. (1:30 p.m.)
USA vs. Mexico                                                  3 p.m. (4 p.m.) 

Sunday, Feb. 14 (Houston)
Guyana vs. Guatemala                                     12:30 p.m. (1:30 p.m.)
Trinidad vs. Canada                                          3 p.m. (4 p.m.)

Monday, Feb. 15 (Frisco)
Mexico vs. Costa Rica                                       5 p.m. (6 p.m.)
USA vs. Puerto Rico                                           7:30 p.m. (8:30 p.m.)

Tuesday, Feb. 16 (Houston)
Trinidad & Tobago vs. Guyana                         5 p.m. (6 p.m.)
Canada vs. Guatemala                                      7:30 p.m. (8:30 p.m.)


Friday, Feb. 19 (Houston)
Group B winner vs. Group A runner-up          4:30 p.m. (5:30 p.m.)
Group A winner vs. Group B runner-up          7:30 p.m. (8:30 p.m.)


Sunday, Feb. 21 (Houston)
Semifinal winners                                            4 p.m. (5 p.m.)


Eight Teams Advance in 2016 Open Cup Second Round Qualifying

CHICAGO (Nov. 23, 2015) – The Second Qualifying Round for the 2016 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup concluded with eight matches this past weekend. Harpo’s FC (Colo.) and San Francisco City Football Club – both participants in the 2015 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup – took one more step towards the 2016 tournament, while past giant-killers Cal FC and Chula Vista FC fell at the second hurdle.

In one of three matches played on Saturday, Nov. 21, renowned amateur side Cal FC, who defeated Major League Soccer’s Portland Timbers in the 2012 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup, fell 2-1 to LA Wolves FC at Toyota Sports Complex in Torrance, California. Alberto Anguiano’s 63rd minute strike wasn’t enough to erase 15th and 25th minute goals from Wolves’ Samuel Higgins.

Chula Vista FC, who went on a Cinderella run of their own in the 2015 U.S. Open Cup, were also dispatched from the tournament, falling 4-0 to La Maquina (Calif.) Saturday at Eastlake High School in Chula Vista, California. Edwin Borboa’s brace (28th and 67th minutes) along with goals from Rodolofo Godinez Jr. (58th) and Jose Castro Perez (78th) pushed La Maquina into April’s Third Qualifying Round.

On Sunday, despite trailing 2-1 at halftime of their match with Davis Legacy (Calif.), San Francisco City FC ran out 4-3 winners at historic Kezar Stadium on Sunday afternoon. Davis Legacy received an own goal in the eighth minute, which City FC responded to with a goal from Reed Williams in the 14th. Davis restored their lead through Kevin Schulte in the 26th, taking the side into the locker room up 2-1. A 68th minute penalty-kick conversion from City FC’s Daniel Kirkland brought things level again. Legacy’s Andisheh Bagheri pulled the side ahead with a 79th minute strike, only for City FC’s Marc Tonkel to erase the lead one minute later. The goal would spur City FC on to victory as Johannes Demarzi found the game-winner five minutes later, putting the club on the doorstep of its second straight qualification to the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup.

Harpo’s FC used an early, sixth minute goal from Kyle Luetkehans to ride to a 3-1 victory against Colorado Rush at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park in Commerce City, Colorado. Daniel Campbell would make it 2-0 for Harpo’s in the 36th minute, before Owen Darby pulled one back for the Rush in the 55th. Harpo’s Sawyer Frank put the game on ice with his finish in the 82nd.

The Third Qualifying Round of the 2016 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup is set for April 2-3. Twelve of the 14 Second Qualifying Round winners in closest proximity to each other will compete. The remaining two winners will be awarded the first two slots into the 2016 U.S. Open Cup from the Open Division local qualifying track and will be joined by the six victors from the Third Qualifying Round. The exact matchups for this round will be determined on Jan. 7, 2016.

The U.S. Open Cup, recognized as U.S. Soccer's national club championship, is an annual competition open to all amateur and professional soccer teams affiliated with U.S. Soccer. The tournament has crowned a champion annually since 1914. In 1999, the competition was renamed to honor American soccer pioneer Lamar Hunt. 

Second Qualifying Round                                                                                                                                                                  





Nov. 14

Lansdowne Bhoys FC (N.Y.) at Worcester FC (Mass.)


Foley Stadium; Worcester, Mass.

Nov. 14

Jersey Shore Boca (N.J.) at New York Pancyprian Freedoms (N.Y.)


Randall’s Island Wards Meadow Fields # 75; New York, N.Y.

Nov. 15

Dulles Sportsplex Aegean Hawks FC (Md.) at Aromas Café FC (Va.)


Charlottesville High School; Charlotttesville, Va.

Nov. 15

Global Premier Soccer Omens (Mass.) at Southie FC (Mass.)


Lawrence Veterans Memorial Stadium; Lawrence, Mass.

Nov. 15

Salone FC (Pa.) at West Chester United (Pa.)


West Chester United SC Turf Field; West Chester, Pa.

Nov. 21

La Maquina (Calif.)  at Chula Vista FC (Calif.)


Eastlake High; Chula Vista, Calif.

Nov. 21

Queen City United FC (N.C.) at. CD Motagua of New Orleans (La.)


Pan American Stadium; New Orleans, La.

Nov. 21

Cal FC (Calif.) at LA Wolves FC (Calif.)


Toyota Sports Complex Field 1; Torrance, Calif.

Nov. 22

Davis Legacy (Calif.) at San Francisco City Football Club (Calif.)


Kezar Stadium; San Francisco, Calif.

Nov. 22

Outbreak FC  (Calif.) at San Pedro Monsters FC (Calif.)

2-2, 4-3 AET

Toyota Sports Complex Field 2; Torrance, Calif.

Nov. 22

Boca Raton Football Club (Fla.) at Uruguay Kendall FC (Fla.)

1-1 (5-4 PKs)

Broward College-South Campus; Pembroke Pines, Fla.

Nov. 22

Colorado Rush (Colo.) at Harpo’s FC (Colo.)


Dick’s Sporting Goods Park Field 8; Commerce City, Colo.

Nov. 22

San Nicolas FC (Calif.) at Real Sociedad (Calif.)


St. John Bosco Football Stadium; Bellflower, Calif.


International Portland Select (Ore.) at NTX Rayados (Texas)

0-1 (forfeit)

None (International Portland Select withdrew Nov. 10)

Third Qualifying Round: April 2-3, 2016

First Round: May 11, 2016

MNT on TV: Conference Finals Edition

It all begins on Saturday. After starting in both qualifiers for the MNT and scoring on a free kick against St. Vincent & The Grenadines, Johnson is back in Germany looking to lead Borussia Monchengladbach to a victory against Hannover. ‘Gladbach is unbeaten in its last eight games and has risen to sixth on the Bundesliga table. Johnson’s club team, along with Bayern Munich, is the only team in Bundesliga without a loss in its last five matches.

Later that day the two leading goalkeepers from the MNT will go head-to-head in a Premier League matchup as Tim Howard and Everton go up against Brad Guzan and Aston Villa. Each ‘keeper played as the U.S. opened qualifying, with Guzan collecting a win against St. Vincent & the Grenadines, while Howard posted a shutout in his 30th career qualifier when then U.S. drew Trinidad & Tobago. The last meeting between the netminders ended in a 3-0 win for Everton in Oct. 2014.

While that match is going on, Geoff Cameron and Stoke City will go up against Southampton. Cameron has started in the last five matches for the MNT and has scored twice – against Mexico in the CONCACAF Cup and St. Vincent & The Grenadines in the qualifying opener. After helping his side shut out Chelsea in its last match, the center back will look to lead the defense to another clean sheet against Southampton

The day concludes in France with Monaco facing Nantes. Midfielder Alejandro Bedoya has missed the last six weeks with an illness, but is back and ready to make an impact for his Nantes, which has struggled in his absence. In four appearances in Ligue 1 this year, Bedoya has one goal and will look to add another.


Kickoff Time / TV

MNT Players

Borussia Monchengladbach v. Hannover

9:30 a.m. ET /

‘Gladbach: Fabian Johnson

Everton v. Aston Villa

10 a.m. ET / NBC Sports Extra Time, NBC Sports Live Extra

Everton: Tim Howard

Aston Villa: Brad Guzan

Southampton v. Stoke City

10 a.m. ET / NBC Sports Extra Time, NBC Sports Live Extra

Stoke City: Geoff Cameron

Monaco v. Nantes

2 p.m. ET / beIN Sports Connect

Nantes: Alejandro Bedoya

Sunday morning begins in Germany with John Brooks and Hertha Berlin facing Hoffenheim. Brooks started and played the full 90 for his team in its win against Hannover right before the winter break. Hertha is having a strong year in Bundesliga, currently sitting in fourth place in the table.

Shortly after that match, Alfredo Morales will lead FC Ingolstadt against Darmstadt. Morales is a regular starter for team, which will look to pick up its first win since Oct. 3.

The night concludes back in the States with the MLS Conference finals. The East gets the action started with the Columbus Crew taking on New York Red Bulls. Fresh off his first senior MNT camp where he earned his first cap, 20-year-old Matt Miazga will work to bolster the Red Bulls defense as the club duels with an experienced Columbus Crew attack.

Darlington Nagbe, who also took part in his first camp with the MNT and collected back-to-back appearances, leads the Portland Timbers in their semifinal against FC Dallas. From his midfield position, Nagbe buried five goals and five assists for the Timbers this year.


Kickoff Time / TV

MNT Players

Hertha Berlin v. Hoffenheim

9:30 a.m. ET / FOX Sports 1, FOX Sports Go, GolTV,

Berlin: John Brooks

Ingolstadt v. Darmstadt

11:30 a.m. ET / FOX Sports 2, FOX Deportes, FOX Sports Go,

Ingolstadt: Alfredo Morales

Columbus Crew v. New York Red Bulls

5 p.m. ET / ESPN, ESPN Deportes, MLS Live

Red Bulls: Matt Miazga

Portland Timbers v. FC Dallas

7:30 p.m. ET / FOX Sports 1, FOX Deportes, MLS Live

Timbers: Darlington Nagbe


2015 Women's World Cup Trophy on Display at Two Locations in Honolulu

CHICAGO (Nov. 19, 2015) - The FIFA Women's World Cup 2015 Winner’s Trophy will be on display from Dec. 4-6, in Honolulu ahead of the U.S. Women’s National Team match against Trinidad & Tobago at Aloha Stadium on Sunday (3:00 p.m. HT on FOX Sports 1 and FOX Sports GO).

On Friday, Dec. 4, the trophy will be at the Hawaii Convention Center on the fourth floor lobby from 12-6 p.m. On Saturday, Dec. 5, the trophy will be on display during the U.S. WNT public training at Aloha Stadium from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Entry to public training is free.

Fans will also be able to see the trophy at FanHQ on game day from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. at Aloha Stadium on the south side in front of the box office and behind the John Burns statue.

Fans are encouraged to come and take their photo with the iconic trophy, which is normally located at the United States Soccer Federation's headquarters in Chicago.

The U.S. Women's National Team won their third Women's World Cup earlier this summer, defeating Japan 5-2 on July 5 in front of more than 53,000 fans at BC Place in Vancouver, Canada. The match was watched by a domestic TV audience of more than 25 million, making it the most watched soccer game in U.S. history.

The FIFA Women's World Cup 2015 Winner’s Trophy will be on display at the Coca-Cola Share the Celebration activation area throughout the remaining U.S. Women's National Team Victory Tour. Dates and times for further display will be released prior to the matches in the specific markets.

Women's World Cup Trophy Display Schedule – Honolulu

Friday, Dec. 4
12 - 6 p.m.
Hawaii Convention Center (4th floor lobby)
1801 Kalakaua Ave.
Honolulu, HI 96815
Parking $10

Saturday, Dec. 5
11 a.m. - 1 p.m.            
Aloha Stadium (Concourse; near Gate 4)
99-500 Salt Lake Blvd
Honolulu, HI 96818

Sunday, Dec. 6
11 a.m. – 3 p.m.              
Aloha Stadium FanHQ
(South Side; ticket office/volcano area)
99-500 Salt Lake Blvd
Honolulu, HI 96818

Ten Metropolitan Areas from Across the United States Selected to Host Copa America Centenario

CHICAGO (Nov. 19, 2015) – The Confederation of North, Central America and Caribbean Association Football (CONCACAF), the South American Football Confederation (CONMEBOL) and the Copa America Centenario Local Organizing Committee (LOC) have determined the 10 U.S. metropolitan areas that have been selected to host matches during the historic Copa America Centenario to be played from June 3-26, 2016, in the United States.

The host metropolitan areas and respective stadiums are: Bay Area (Levi’s Stadium), Chicago (Soldier Field), Foxborough (Gillette Stadium), Houston (NRG Stadium), New York/New Jersey (MetLife Stadium), Orlando (Orlando Citrus Bowl Stadium), Pasadena (Rose Bowl), Philadelphia (Lincoln Financial Field), Phoenix (University of Phoenix Stadium) and Seattle (CenturyLink Field). Similar to the FIFA World Cup, each venue will host matches on multiple days through the tournament. Most venues will host at least three games.

To be among the first to access tickets to this once-in-a-lifetime event, fans can visit Due to the expected high demand for this premium soccer tournament, fans are urged to register early to guarantee access to information as it becomes available. More ticketing information will be released in the coming weeks.

Chosen from among 24 candidates that originally submitted bids earlier this year, the stadiums passed rigorous standards – including minimum seating capacity of 60,000 and other world-class infrastructure requirements – in order to host matches of this high-profile tournament, which is sure to draw scores of fans to venues across the country.

The 2016 Copa America Centenario is the historic centennial edition of Copa America – the South American championship – and will be staged outside of South America for the first time. The tournament will feature six teams from CONCACAF and all 10 teams from CONMEBOL.

“The 10 host cities of Copa America Centenario 2016 will provide the perfect stage to unite the American continents in a unique celebration of the football history and talent in the CONCACAF and CONMEBOL regions,” said Alfredo Hawit, President of CONCACAF. “We are certain that the host country and the U.S. Soccer Federation, in their roles, will not only display the growing passion for the sport, but also contribute to expanding the legacy and magnitude of this tournament by providing a memorable experience for the whole footballing community.”

“Football is the most marvelous sport in the world. For us, it’s truly a source of pride to be able to bring to the United States this unparalleled event – the Copa America Centenario, the oldest national team tournament in the world,” said CONMEBOL President Juan Angel Napout. “This long-time, carefully planned dream would not have been possible without the fantastic efforts of the U.S. Soccer Federation, CONCACAF and CONMEBOL. It’s the first time in the history of the event, since 1916, that the mythical Copa America will be played outside South America, with 16 teams from throughout the Americas and the Caribbean. Without a doubt, this event will provide the luxury of stars on display whose talents shine in the most competitive leagues in the world. The party in the United States is a certainty.”

“These 10 cities and venues will provide a fantastic setting for fans across the world to attend Copa America Centenario and allow them to see the amazing passion for soccer in the United States,” said U.S. Soccer President Sunil Gulati. “The participating teams and fans will be treated to a first-class environment in each city and stadium, adding to the world-class talent that will be competing on the field. We are looking forward to working closely with all of the cities and venues in hosting this prestigious event and creating an extraordinary experience for fans.”

From CONCACAF, host United States and Mexico are automatic qualifiers, while Costa Rica (2014 Central American Cup winner) and Jamaica (2014 CFU Caribbean Cup winner) qualified with regional championships last year.

The final two teams from CONCACAF will be determined in a double-header playoff set to be disputed Jan. 8, 2016, in Panama City.  Trinidad & Tobago will face Haiti, and Panama squares off against Cuba with the winners qualifying for the Copa America Centenario.

The South American field for the tournament features Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay and Venezuela. Uruguay has been crowned champion of the Copa America a record 15 times, while Chile won its first title at this past year’s edition, which it hosted.

CONCACAF and CONMEBOL have partnered for the historic 2016 Copa America tournament, setting a new standard for inter-confederation cooperation in the Americas and worldwide. The Copa America Centenario Local Organizing Committee, formed by tournament host U.S. Soccer, is a separate entity responsible for certain logistical and organizational details of the competition. 


Date Matchup Result Venue Attendance Goal Scorers
April 25, 2011 U-17 MNT vs Uruguay 4-1 W 0 Corriveau, Arriola, De La Torre (2)
April 23, 2011 U-17 MNT vs Japan 1-2 L 0 Arriola
April 21, 2011 U-17 MNT vs France 1-2 L 0 De La Torre
April 20, 2011 U-17 MNT vs Portugal 1-3 L 0 Najem