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Post-Game Quote Sheet: WNT vs. Switzerland – Aug. 20, 2014

U.S. WNT head coach Jill Ellis

Overall thoughts on the match:
“We knew Switzerland was going to be a good challenge. We played good, uptempo soccer. We got a lot of players in tonight. Some really good spurts and we’ve been focusing on a few things. We haven’t had much time together so overall I was very pleased with the effort and with the result.”

On areas of focus for this game:
“We worked a little bit, talking about our build up and I think we’ve got to get more out of our outside backs going forward. I think we have to get a little bit more connection centrally between our three. But we tried some different things tonight.”

On the new formation, specifically for Lauren Holiday and Megan Rapinoe:
“I wanted Holiday to control the rhythm so I moved her deeper into the midfield. We took Holiday out of the ten. I wanted to see Megan in there because she’s so good running at players. Her final pass is so good. She’s got a shot and she’s dangerous in there.”

On Crystal Dunn’s contribution on the back line and playing on the left side”
“She doesn’t usually play on the left side. I was actually really pleased. Defensively, she’s coming back in. This is her first time back in with me. I actually thought she did a solid job. She’s got to get her timing of her releasing down and how to play out a little bit better. I was pleased. Pleased with her positioning overall.”

On the depth of the WNT:
“Going into our camp for World Cup Qualifiers, we’ll have 26 solid players competing for a spot. I was pleased to see different players come in tonight and start to emerge. I’m really excited about it.”

On Christie Rampone’s role:
"She’s been phenomenal. She’s been hurt, a little banged up and her confidence was a little bit low. She has leadership, the ability to control the line and still her pace, she’s kind of a freak of nature. She’s been fantastic for us. Calms the team, good leader on and off the field. I’m really excited and hope she can make this journey with us. I believe she can.

On Abby Wambach’s return from injury:
“Abby’s coming along and that’s why I think it was so important for her to get a goal tonight. She’s worked very, very hard physically and on the technical side of her game to get up to speed fairly quickly. By our next camp, I think she’ll be 100 percent.”

On Alex Morgan’s return after recovering from injury:
“Alex has found her form. She had a great game the other night. She looks really sharp. That’s why she got the start, because she’s been playing very well and she looked good in camp.”

U.S. WNT goalkeeper Hope Solo

On not breaking the shutout record:
“For me, the record is going to come when it comes. I’m not going to chase it. It’s always disappointing to get scored on if it’s a game with a record-breaking opportunity or not. Of course I’d like to get the record so I can move on and focus on other things, but it’s not the end-all-be-all for me to have it happen here in Cary or against Mexico in the next two games, or whenever it happens.”

U.S. WNT midfielder Megan Rapinoe

On her goal in the third minute:
“I think it popped out wide to Sydney and I was just filling in the top of the box. I took a quick touch and hit it. I think it took a little bit of a deflection going in, but it was on frame at least, so count it.”

On playing in a different formation:
“It is different. It is definitely different than playing the wing. The responsibilities are just different. I have the responsibility to just find the space. It puts a little bit more onus on my to find that space.”

U.S. WNT defender Crystal Dunn

On her contribution to the team:
“I did my best to try and push up when I could. I think Switzerland did a good job of shutting that space down. I think my role on this team is to get the ball and possess it and that’s what I tried to do tonight.”

On head coach Jill Ellis’ decision to move her from right back to left back:
“I’m just happy she wanted me on the field. At the end of the day, she could tell me Hope is taking a break and I’m playing keeper and I’d be happy about that. It was great to be out there regardless of what side I’m on. “

On the back line taking shape:
“It’s going to be big. I think over the past two years we’ve been switching up a lot. I think it’s important to get a set back four. That’s what I’m competing for: to try and win a spot on this team.”

U.S. WNT midfielder Carli Lloyd

On her initial thoughts of the game:
“I thought it was a good result for us. Even though it was a short trip for us, the last couple days we’ve been working on some things. I thought we really started to find the momentum. The second half was fun. We were pinging it around, having some fun, finding some space. Overall, a good result, some good goals, some good things. Obviously there are some things we can tidy up on and work on, but this is a good start for where we want to be.”

On how the team can improve going forward:
“Just having that mindset of getting into our defensive shape a little bit quicker. A little bit more diligent with that. As long as we get back into our shape, then we can take a little bit of time. As long as we’re compact, we won’t give teams a lot of time and space to play. The Swiss were a good, quality side. They had some good attacking abilities. If you give them good time and space, they’re going to ping balls around you. Overall it was a good result.”

On the new formation with Megan Rapinoe, Lauren Holiday and Abby Wambach:
“As long as we can fine tune our shape in the middle, and we started to find that in the second half, Holiday and I started to connect with Rapinoe in there and then Press and when Abby came in. We started to really find the rhythm, find the space and picking off those pockets. We’ve got to keep building off of that.”

U.S. WNT forward Christen Press

On moving forward with a new formation:
“I was higher up the field and there were more counterattacks, so that’s good. I’m just trying to find my way on this team, find my role and see what I can do to help the team win.”

On her goal to give the U.S. a 3-1 lead:
“I think the goal was a corner kick that was headed out. I got on the second ball, and it was a chest and shoulder and volley, I think before it bounced. It was one of those where you strike through the ball, a little bit on one side and it bent into the upper part of the net.”

On having the Stanford women’s soccer team in attendance:
“It’s always great to have your alma mater there. I learned so much from Stanford and I’m glad they could be at the game.”

On the atmosphere and fans:
“I think that the environment tonight was phenomenal. When Abby walked in to the locker room she said, ‘that’s how it should feel going to play a soccer game.’ We all had the chills, with the girls outside screaming and supporting us and all the tailgaters. It’s phenomenal for us to see. It’s such a motivation. We’re so, so blessed to have this support going into our World Cup Qualifiers.”


U.S. WNT Tallies Three Second-Half Goals in 4-1 Rout of Switzerland

CARY, North Carolina (Aug. 20, 2014) – The U.S. Women’s National Team scored three second-half goals and earned a 4-1 victory against Switzerland in front of a sold-out crowd of 9,992 at WakeMed Soccer Park.

A well-rounded scoring effort featured goals from Megan Rapinoe, Carli Lloyd, Christen Press and Abby Wambach. Lloyd’s 56th-minute penalty kick served as the game-winner, and Wambach’s second-half PK pushed her USA-record goal scoring total to 168.

This was the first meeting between the two countries at the senior team level. Switzerland has already qualified for the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Canada, and the USA will prepare for FIFA Women’s World Cup Qualifying in October in the United States.

Wednesday marked the first opportunity for goalkeeper Hope Solo to set a new shutout record (currently tied with Briana Scurry with 71 clean sheets), but a Switzerland penalty kick from Ana-Maria Crnogorcevic put that milestone on hold.

The U.S. goal total could have been far greater if not for Switzerland goalkeeper Gaëlle Thalmann. She made seven first-half saves as the USA pelted the Swiss goal with eight shots – all of them on frame.

Goal Scoring Rundown:
USA – Megan Rapinoe (Sydney Leroux), 3rd minute: From midfield, Rapinoe started the U.S. attack and dished to Leroux on the left side. Leroux cut to her right and played the ball back to Rapinoe about 10 yards above the box. Rapinoe fired with her left from about 22 yards out. It took a slight deflection off Switzerland’s Rahel Kiwic and squeaked inside the right side of the frame for the early lead. USA 1, SUI 0

USA – Carli Lloyd (penalty), 56th minute: Megan Rapinoe’s cross from the left side of the box hit the hand of Switzerland’s Fabienne Humm and the USA was awarded the penalty kick. Lloyd was called in for the occasion and stepped up confidently with a low right-footed shot into the left of the frame for the two-goal cushion. Switzerland goalkeeper Gaëlle Thalmann had anticipated the shot going the other direction. USA 2, SUI 0

SUI – Ana-Maria Crnogorcevic (penalty), 70th minute: In a similar fashion leading to the USA’s penalty kick, Switzerland’s Ramona Bachmann crossed from the left side and the ball struck U.S. midfielder Megan Rapinoe’s arm. Referee Katja Koroleva pointed to the spot, and Crnogorcevic took the PK. USA goalkeeper Hope Solo, attempting to break the U.S. WNT shutout record, leaned to her right and Crnogorcevic shot in the other direction to cut the USA’s lead to one. USA 2, SUI 1

USA – Christen Press (unassisted), 77th minute: Following a Christie Rampone free kick into the box, the ball fumbled around and Switzerland’s defense weakly cleared. From 25 yards out, Press chest-trapped the short clearance and fired a right-footed shot that ricocheted off the crossbar and over the end line as goalkeeper Thalmann could only watch. USA 3, SUI 1

USA – Abby Wambach (penalty), 87th minute: On a Carli Lloyd cross from the right, Wambach drew a foul against Switzerland second-half sub Nicole Remund, who shoved the USA striker and earned the PK. Wambach took the penalty herself, a right-footed shot that clipped off of Thalmann’s gloves and into the net for her fifth goal this year and 168th of her storied career. USA 4, SUI 1 (FINAL)

Key Saves and Defensive Stops:
SUI – Gaëlle Thalmann, 20th minute: USA goalkeeper Hope Solo delivered a deep ball toward a darting Christen Press as she had a step on Switzerland’s back line. Thalmann instinctively rushed off her line and outside the box and headed the ball away before Press could converge.

SUI – Gaëlle Thalmann, 39th and 40th minutes: The busy Switzerland goalkeeper made back-to-back diving stops against the USA’s lethal attack. First, it was an Alex Morgan left-footed shot from the left side of the box that was headed toward the inside of the far right post, but Thalmann dove to her left for the save. Then, Lauren Holiday took a crack from just outside the top of the box, and again Thalmann made a diving save at the near right post.

SUI – Gaëlle Thalmann, 46th minute: In the first 12 seconds of the second half, the U.S. nearly took advantage of an errant pass in Switzerland’s half. Carli Lloyd fired from outside the box and Thalmann made a swatting right-handed save on a shot that was bound for the upper right corner.

Milestone Watch:

  • Defender and team captain Christie Rampone made her 295th appearance as she nears the 300-cap milestone. Rampone is second all-time in WNT history to Kristine Lilly in games played. Lilly had 352 caps from 1987-2010.
  • Carli Lloyd moved past Briana Scurry for 13th in career appearances with 174.
  • Hope Solo tied Michelle Akers for 17th all-time in career caps with 153.
  • Lloyd now has 51 goals for her career as she is ninth on the all-time goal scoring list.

Next on the Schedule:
The U.S. WNT will host two matches against Mexico, first on Sept. 13 at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, Utah (4:30 p.m. MT), followed by a Sept. 18 match at Sahlen’s Stadium in Rochester, New York (7 p.m. ET).
Broadcast information: Sept. 13 – TBD; Sept. 18 – ESPN2, WatchESPN
Social: Twitter (@ussoccer_wnt | @ussoccer_esp); Facebook; Instagram

Additional Notes:

  • The U.S. is now 8-2-3 this year.
  • Hope Solo moved to 118-9-18 for her career. She is second only to Briana Scurry for all-time wins (Scurry went 133-12-14 from 1994-2008).
  • Christen Press now has 13 goals in 25 international appearances.
  • The USA improved to 108-2-8 when Abby Wambach scores a goal.
  • Wambach has now scored at least five goals in a calendar year 11 times in her 14 years with the WNT.
  • U.S. head coach Jill Ellis’ starting lineup featured a defensive corps led by Solo in goal, Crystal Dunn at left back, Ali Krieger at right back and the center back duo of Becky Sauerbrunn and team captain Christie Rampone.
  • The midfield of the 4-3-3 featured Carli Lloyd, Lauren Holiday and Megan Rapinoe.
  • The USA’s starting forward trio included Sydney Leroux, Alex Morgan and Press.
  • The U.S. rolled out three substitutions to open the second half. Wambach entered for Leroux, Meghan Klingenberg replaced Krieger and Julie Johnston got the call for Sauerbrunn.
  • Heather O’Reilly replaced Morgan in the 66th minute, Morgan Brian entered for Rapinoe in the 78th minute, and Allie Long replaced Holiday in the 85th minute.
  • O’Reilly, Press and Sauerbrunn have played in all 13 games this year.
  • Krieger and Lloyd lead the USA with 12 starts apiece in 2014.
  • Ellis is now 8-0-3 as the U.S. WNT head coach.
  • Ten players on the U.S roster that trained this week in North Carolina return to National Women’s Soccer League play for the semifinal stage of the league’s second season. FC Kansas City hosts Portland Thorns FC on Saturday, Aug. 23 (1 p.m. ET, ESPN2), and Seattle Reign FC takes on the Washington Spirit on Aug. 24 (11 p.m. ET, ESPN2).

-U.S. Women’s National Team Report-

Match: U.S. Women’s National Team vs. Switzerland
Date: Aug. 20, 2014
Competition: International Friendly
Venue: WakeMed Soccer Park; Cary, North Carolina
Kickoff: 7:30 p.m. ET
Attendance: 9,992
Weather: 77 degrees, cool

Scoring Summary: 1 2 F
USA                        1 3 4
SUI                          0 1 1

USA – Megan Rapinoe (Sydney Leroux)    3rd minute
USA – Carli Lloyd (penalty)                         56
SUI – Ana-Maria Crnogorcevic (penalty)    71
USA – Christen Press (unassisted)              77
USA – Abby Wambach (penalty)                 87

Lineups:
USA: 1-Hope Solo; 11-Ali Krieger (25-Meghan Klingenberg, 46), 4-Becky Sauerbrunn (16-Julie Johnston, 46), 3-Christie Rampone (capt.), 19-Crystal Dunn; 10-Carli Lloyd, 12-Lauren Holiday (6-Allie Long, 85), 15-Megan Rapinoe (7-Morgan Brian, 78); 2-Sydney Leroux (20-Abby Wambach, 46), 13-Alex Morgan (9-Heather O’Reilly, 66), 23-Christen Press
Substitutions Not Used: 18-Alyssa Naeher
Head Coach: Jill Ellis

SUI: 1-Gaëlle Thalmann (12-Stenia Michel, 46); 5-Noëlle Maritz, 14-Rahel Kiwic (8-Sandy Maendly, 82), 15-Caroline Abbé (capt.); 7-Martina Moser (22-Vanessa Bernauerk, 68), 9-Lia Wälti, 16-Fabienne Humm (2-Nicole Remund, 68), 18-Vanessa Bürki (6-Selina Kuster, 56); 10-Ramona Bachmann, 11-Lara Dickenmann, 13-Ana-Maria Crnogorcevic (19-Eseosa Aigbogun, 74)
Substitutions Not Used: 23-Fabienne Bangerter
Head coach: Martina Voss-Tecklenburg

Stats Summary: USA / SUI
Shots: 16 / 7
Shots on Goal: 15 / 1
Saves: 0 / 10
Corner Kicks: 8 / 3
Fouls: 8 / 11
Offside: 3 / 2

Misconduct Summary:
SUI – Rahel Kiwic (caution)           19th minute
SUI – Lia Wälti (caution)               45+1
SUI – Caroline Abbé (caution)      58
USA – Carli Lloyd (caution)          85

Officials:
Referee: Katja Koroleva (USA)
Assistant Referee 1: Felisha Mariscal (USA)
Assistant Referee 2: Amanda Ross (USA)
Fourth Official: Christopher Spivey (USA)

Budweiser Woman of the Match: Lauren Holiday

U.S. WNT Stadium Training in Cary, North Carolina

Here’s an up close look at the U.S. Women’s National Team training in Cary, N.C., on Aug. 19, 2014, the day before its match against Switzerland at WakeMed Soccer Park.

Abby Wambach Takes ALS Ice Bucket Challenge

U.S. WNT forward Abby Wambach completes the #alsicebucketchallenge from U.S. Soccer President Sunil Gulati. She will be donating to this worthy cause and challenges the #USMNT.

Paralympian Josh McKinney to be Honored at WNT Match

Longtime U.S. Paralympian Josh McKinney will be recognized at halftime of the U.S. Women’s National Team’s game against Switzerland on Wednesday at WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary, North Carolina.

McKinney announced in June that he would retire from his impressive career on the U.S. Paralympic National Soccer Team. McKinney represented the USA for 19 years, scoring 81 goals in 124 games.

“It’s been an honor to wear the crest and play for the U.S. for 19 years,” McKinney said during the USA’s trip to Barcelona, Spain, for the 7-a-Side Championship. “I will always be grateful for U.S. Soccer, my coaches and teammates, all who are family to me.”

McKinney wore the captain’s armband starting in 2005, and he played in three Paralympic Games.

On May 6, 2012, McKinney earned his 100th cap during the USA’s match against Russia in Yevpatoriya, Ukraine.

Rodriguez, Sauerbrunn Reflect on 2004 Trip to Thailand

The very first venture into big-time international soccer for U.S. Women's National Team players Becky Sauerbrunn and Amy Rodriguez turned into a bittersweet experience.

Their participation at the 2004 FIFA Under-19 Women's World Championship was quite sweet because of its exotic location – Thailand – and the competition opened the eyes of both teenagers to the demands of one the highest levels of international soccer.

It was bitter as well, because the Americans failed in their quest to win the championship and due to the damage and loss of life the great tsunami caused a month afterwards.

The team had discovered paradise in Phuket, Thailand.

"I loved my experience in Thailand," Rodriguez said. "It was one of the most beautiful places I have ever been. Actually, one of my favorite countries ever. Very exotic, very beautiful. It was gorgeous. It was amazing."

Amy Rodriguez and Becky Sauerbrunn

The team's first two group-stage games were in Phuket. The USA stayed at a beach hotel.

"We lucked out," Sauerbrunn said. "You look out your window and you're looking straight at the ocean. The first time I walked through the lobby I was like 'Oh my God. I had never seen this.' It was beautiful. I really wasn't expecting the turnout at the games, either. The Thai people really came out. We got 10,000 people for the opening matches and for a lot of us; we had never played in front of that kind of crowd before. The country did the tournament justice."

It might have been paradise, but the tournament was work for the WNT. The U.S. won its first four matches before running into a talented German side, losing them in the semifinals, 3-1. Germany would go on to win the tournament. The USA blanked Brazil and an 18-year-old Marta in the third-place match, 3-0.

Rodriguez said not winning "was quite disappointing," which only left the players hungry for more success.

"Most definitely," she said. "My goal, my ultimate career goal at this point is to win a World Cup. I'm hoping that I have a good year this year and I can make that World Cup team and hopefully get that World Cup gold that I haven't been able to get."

The tournament turned out to be a learning experience on several levels.

"It was a gut check," Sauerbrunn said. "It was kind of an expectation that we were going to win. For a lot of girls it was the first time, like, wow, we're not used to this. This is not a good feeling. What I carried on from the U-19s is that it doesn't matter how hard you prepare, what you're doing; you show up on that day, you take care of business."

Nikki Krzysik, Becky Sauerbrunn and Amy Rodriguez

Rodriguez remembered how fast the players and teams were.

"I was shocked as a 17-year-old playing against these great players," she said. "The speed of play was much quicker. I was still in high school at the time when I was brought in with the U-19s, so I learned to play a lot of faster and how to go against tough competition."

They also learned how fragile life and paradise can be. On Dec. 26, 2004, about month after the tournament final, a tsunami wreaked havoc in 15 countries. The Phuket hotel was destroyed. More than 230,000 people were killed, including almost 5,400 in Thailand.

"I felt very fortunate to be there when I did in such beauty and such an awesome experience, but it was sad to hear that it was destroyed by a giant tsunami," Rodriguez said.

Added Sauerbrunn "It just makes you put things into perspective a little bit about soccer. For us it's a passion, but it’s not an end-all, be-all of life. We were so sad about the people that we met, the hotel staff. We were still bummed about the tournament then it was kind of like well, there way worse things that can happen to us. We should be really fortunate for everything that we had."

Amy Rodriguez, Jen Redmond and Becky Sauerbrunn

U.S. WNT Faces Switzerland for First Time on Aug. 20 at WakeMed Soccer Park

U.S. Women’s National Team vs. Switzerland
WakeMed Soccer Park; Cary, North Carolina
Aug. 20, 2014

U.S. WNT FACES SWITZERLAND FOR FIRST TIME: The U.S. Women’s National Team will face Switzerland for the first time in its history when the two teams square off on Aug. 20 at WakeMed Soccer Park in a match that sold out its 10,000 tickets on July 25. The match kicks off at 7:30 p.m. ET and will be shown on ussoccer.com. Fans can also follow on Twitter @ussoccer_wnt. The USA is 7-2-3 so far in 2014 and will be playing its third match under head coach Jill Ellis since she was officially been named to the position.

SWISS, THEN SEMIS: With just two days of training prior to the match, U.S. head coach Jill Ellis has called up just 19 players for this match and will choose 18 for the game-day roster. Eighteen of the 19 players are currently playing in the NWSL (only rising college senior Morgan Brian is not a professional) and 10 players are on clubs that will enter the 2014 National Women’s Soccer League Semifinals this coming weekend when FC Kansas City hosts Portland Thorns FC on Aug. 23 (1 p.m. ET, ESPN2)and Seattle Reign FC takes on the Washington Spirit on Aug. 24 (11 p.m. ET, ESPN2). The USA will have two more international friendly matches before CONCACAF Women’s World Cup qualifying takes place in the United States in October. The USA faces Mexico on Sept. 13 at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, Utah, and on Sept. 18 at Sahlen’s Stadium in Rochester, New York.

2014 U.S. WNT SCHEDULE:

Date

Opponent

Result/Time (ET)

U.S. Goal Scorers/TV

Venue

Jan. 31

Canada

1-0 W

Leroux

Toyota Stadium; Frisco, Texas

Feb. 8

Russia

7-0 W

Lloyd (2), Press (2), O’Reilly,

Leroux, Wambach

FAU Stadium; Boca Raton, Fla.

Feb. 13

Russia

8-0 W

Own Goal (2), Rodriguez, Wambach, Brian, Holiday, Leroux, Press

Georgia Dome; Atlanta, Ga.

March 5

Japan*

1-1 T

Leroux

Parchal, Portugal

March 7

Sweden*

0-1 L

-

Albufeira, Portugal

March 10

Denmark*

3-5 L

Press, Leroux, Rapinoe

Albufeira, Portugal

March 12

Korea DPR*

3-0 W

Wambach (2), O’Reilly

Parchal, Portugal

April 6

China PR

2-0 W

Holiday, Rapinoe

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

April 10

China PR

3-0 W

Lloyd (2), Leroux

Qualcomm Stadium; San Diego, Calif.

May 8

Canada

1-1 T

Leroux

Investors Group Field; Winnipeg, Canada

June 14

France

1-0 W

Leroux

Raymond James Stadium, Tampa, Fla.

June 19

France

2-2 T

Morgan (2)

Rentschter Field, East Hartford, Conn.

Aug. 20

Switzerland

7:30 p.m.

WakeMed Soccer Park, Cary, N.C.

Sept. 13

Mexico

6:30 p.m.

TBD

Sept. 18

Mexico

7 p.m.

Sahlen’s Stadium, Rochester, N.Y.

* Algarve Cup

#SOLO72: U.S. goalkeeper Hope Solo, who has earned 71 shutouts in her 152 caps since debuting for the USA in 2000, needs just one more clean sheet to surpass Briana Scurry’s record, set over 173 caps from 1994-2008. Eleven of Solo’s shutouts have come in world championship play – five in the FIFA Women’s World Cup and six during the Olympics. As a confirmation of her reputation as a big-game player, 42 of Solo’s career shutouts – almost 60 percent – have come in tournament competitions that include world championships, qualifying for the World Cup and Olympics and elite tournaments such as the Algarve Cup, which is held annually in Portugal.

USA TO HOST WOMEN’S WORLD CUP QUALIFYING: The 2014 CONCACAF Women’s Championship, which will qualify three teams for the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup, will be played from Oct. 15-26 in four host cities in the United States: Chicago, Kansas City, Philadelphia and Washington, D.C. The tournament features eight countries divided into two groups of four with the top two finishers in each group after round-robin play moving on to the semifinals. All the countries, including the U.S. Women’s National Team, will play one match in each of the three first-round venues. Sporting Park in Kansas City, Kansas; Toyota Park in Bridgeview, Illinois; and RFK Stadium in Washington, D.C., will each host two doubleheaders, one each for Groups A and B. PPL Park in Chester, Pennsylvania, near Philadelphia, will host the semifinal matches on Oct. 24, along with the third-place match and championship games on Oct. 26. The two finalists and the winner of the third-place match will qualify directly for the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Canada. The fourth-place team will enter a playoff with a South American country for a final berth. The Final Draw for the tournament will be held Sept. 5 in Miami.

U.S. ROSTER BREAKDOWN: The USA’s 19-player roster features two goalkeepers, six defenders, six midfielders and five forwards. Of the USA’s 19 players, just four are over 30: team captain Christie Rampone (39 years old), Abby Wambach (34), Hope Solo (33) and Carli Lloyd (32). Rampone heads into the game with 294 career caps as she is the most-capped active player in the world and second all-time in world history. The least-capped players on the roster are: Alyssa Naeher (0), Julie Johnston (2) and Allie Long (3). Naeher was brought in to replace Ashlyn Harris, who suffered a concussion in NWSL play on Aug. 2 and will need a few more days of rest and recovery.

U.S. Women’s National Team By Position – Detailed Roster
GOALKEEPERS (2): 18-Alyssa Naeher (Boston Breakers), 1-Hope Solo (Seattle Reign FC)
DEFENDERS (6): 19-Crystal Dunn (Washington Spirit), 16-Julie Johnston (Chicago Red Stars), 25-Meghan Klingenberg (Houston Dash), 11-Ali Krieger (Washington Spirit), 3-Christie Rampone (Sky Blue FC), 4-Becky Sauerbrunn (FC Kansas City)
MIDFIELDERS (6): 7-Morgan Brian (Virginia), 12-Lauren Holiday (FC Kansas City), 10-Carli Lloyd (WNY Flash), 6-Allie Long (Portland Thorns FC), 9-Heather O’Reilly (Boston Breakers), 15-Megan Rapinoe (Seattle Reign FC)
FORWARDS (5): 2-Sydney Leroux (Seattle Reign FC), 13-Alex Morgan (Portland Thorns FC), 23-Christen Press (Chicago Red Stars), 8-Amy Rodriguez (FC Kansas City), 20-Abby Wambach (WNY Flash)

WORLD RECORD AND COUNTING: U.S. forward Abby Wambach currently has 167 goals in her career after scoring twice against Korea DPR in the final match of the Algarve Cup in March. Wambach passed the legendary Mia Hamm to become the world’s all-time leading scorer on June 20, 2013, when she pounded in four goals against South Korea at Red Bull Arena. Hamm had 158 international goals from 1987-2004. The match against North Korea at the Algarve Cup marked the 107th win for the USA in a game in which Wambach has scored at least one goal (107-2-8). Wambach has scored 42 goals in her past 53 games over 2012, 2013 and 2014. She is also third all-time in assists with 65, behind only Kristine Lilly (105) and Hamm (144). Wambach missed the two matches against France in June due to a knee injury suffered in NWSL play.

MORGAN BAGS TWO IN RETURN: Alex Morgan returned to the U.S. team in June for the two matches against France and her second half appearance on June 14 in Tampa was her first time since November of 2013, an absence of almost seven months. Morgan came on in the second half against France in East Hartford, Connecticut, and scored two excellent goals to pull out the 2-2 draw, her first scores since June 2, 2012, when she scored twice against Canada in Toronto for a 3-0 U.S. victory. She now has 46 goals (10th all-time) in her 79 caps.

COMING BACK TO CARY: The U.S. Women will be playing their sixth match all-time in Cary. This is a region long known for women’s soccer excellence, and the largest crowd will be on hand Wednesday for the first sellout at WakeMed. The U.S. roster includes four players who played their college soccer at the North Carolina: defenders Meghan Klingenberg and Crystal Dunn and midfielders Allie Long and Heather O’Reilly, who scored her first career WNT goal here on Oct. 6, 2002, against Italy. The USA has won all five previous matches at WakeMed Soccer Park, four by shutout and a wild 3-2 victory against Australia in 2008 that was played in a driving rainstorm and featured a last-minute game-winner from Carli Lloyd. The U.S. Women have previously played 11 matches in North Carolina – five in Cary, two in Charlotte, three in Davidson and one in Greensboro.

SEVEN IN, 17 TO GO: With Switzerland winning European Group 3 with one match to play, and with the completion of the 2014 Asian Women’s Cup, the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup now has seven teams. Along with host Canada, Japan, Australia, China PR, Korea Republic and Thailand have qualified out of Asia. Japan defeated Australia 1-0 in the championship game while China defeated Korea 2-1 to take third. Perhaps the biggest news was the qualification of Thailand to its first Women’s World Cup. Thailand defeated host Vietnam 2-1 for fifth place and became the first team to wholly benefit from the expansion of the tournament to 24 teams. The remaining 17 countries will come from Europe (8 total: Switzerland plus 7 more, up from 4.5 + host in 2011), Africa (3, up for 2), CONCACAF (3.5 + host, up from 2.5) South America (2.5, up from 2) and Oceania (1, same as in 2011). The fourth-place finisher in CONCACAF will play the third-place finisher in South America in a two-game playoff for the final berth.

U.S. ROSTER NOTES:

  • Twenty-eight players have seen game action for the USA so far in 2014, including first-cappers Samantha Mewis, Sarah Hagan and Allie Long.
  • Lauren Holiday, the 2013 NWSL MVP, became the 30th American female player to earn 100 caps when she played against Canada on May 8.
  • Abby Wambach is the USA’s top scorer on the roster with 167 goals, and after Wambach, midfielder Carli Lloyd is the top scorer with 50 career international goals, followed by Alex Morgan (46) and Heather O’Reilly (40). Sydney Leroux is quickly climbing the charts with 31. Amy Rodriguez, who is having an excellent NWSL season with 13 goals, good for second in the league, has 27 international scores to match Shannon Boxx and Joy Fawcett for 18th on the all-time list.
  • Leroux is the USA’s leading scorer this year with seven goals. Wambach, Lloyd and Christen Press have four goals each. Lloyd also has four assists, best on the team this year, while Press also has one assist this year and has scored 12 times in her first 24 WNT games.
  • Julie Johnston gets her third consecutive call-up after a fine season with the Chicago Red Stars. She had not been with the WNT since the February matches against Russia and will be looking for her first international minutes of the year and her third cap.
  • Midfielder Allie Long earns her third call-up after getting her first cap on May 8 against Canada, coming on for Morgan Brian in the 68th minute. Long played in the 2006 FIFA Under-20 Women’s World Cup in Russia with current WNT players Tobin Heath, Kelley O’Hara, Stephanie Cox, Holiday and Rodriguez. Long started both games against France, playing 90 minutes in the first game and 60 in the second.
  • Due to NWSL games, players from Kansas City, Washington, Sky Blue, Chicago and Western New York arrived on Sunday, Aug. 17, while players from Seattle, Portland, Houston and Boston arrived on Monday, Aug. 18.
  • All nine NWSL clubs are represented on the roster.

IN THE RECORD BOOKS:

  • Hope Solo is currently tied with Briana Scurry for all-time shutouts with 71, and her next clean sheet would set a WNT record.
  • The USA’s current 84-game unbeaten streak at home (73-0-11 since Nov. 6, 2004) is a team record. The next-highest streak is 50 games (48-0-2) from Feb. 10, 1996, through April 22, 1999. The USA tied the record on May 14, 2011 (2-0 win against Japan at Columbus Crew Stadium) and broke the record with the 51st game on May 18, 2011 (another 2-0 win against Japan at WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary, North Carolina).
  • Heather O’Reilly is the ninth player to hit 200 caps in U.S. history after reaching the milestone against Korea DPR on March 12 and with 203 has now moved past Kate Markgraf (201) into eighth on the USA’s all-time list.
  • O’Reilly has moved ahead of Tiffeny Milbrett for seventh all-time with 206 caps in her career.
  • O’Reilly is the second-youngest player to hit 200 caps for the USA. Kristine Lilly was 28 years old, 9 months, 15 days when she earned cap No. 200 on May 7, 2000. O’Reilly was 29 years old, 2 months, 10 days when she earned her 200th cap.
  • O’Reilly is currently tied for sixth all-time in assists with Shannon MacMillan with 50.
  • In addition to breaking Mia Hamm’s world scoring record, Abby Wambach’s June 20, 2013, performance against the Korea Republic also made her the USA’s all-time leader in multiple-goal games with 39 for her career. She has since added another on March 12 against Korea DPR and sits at 40. She has 33 two-goal games, five hat tricks, one four-goal game and one five-goal game.
  • With her next assist or goal, Wambach will join Hamm as the only WNT players to reach 400 points in their career. Wambach has 399 points (167 goals, 65 assists) and Hamm had 460 (158 goals, 144 assists).
  • Carli Lloyd’s goal on Oct. 27 against New Zealand gave her 46 goals in her career and moved her past Julie Foudy into ninth on the all-time scoring list. Lloyd scored her first two of the year against Russia on Feb. 8 and added another two-goal game on April 10 against China PR to become the ninth player in U.S. history to score 50 or more goals. Lloyd is also the highest-scoring player in U.S. history who has played exclusively as a midfielder.
  • In the Jan. 31 match against Canada, defender Becky Sauerbrunn became the 46th player in U.S. Women’s National Team history to hit 50 caps. She now has 61, which ranks her tied for 41st all-time.
  • On April 10 against China PR, Sydney Leroux became the 47th player to hit 50 caps. She now has 53 and ranks 45th all-time.
  • Defender Christie Rampone is second all-time with 294 caps, trailing only Lilly (352 caps from 1987-2010).
  • With four more goals, Alex Morgan would become the 10th player in U.S. history to score 50 or more goals.

BY THE NUMBERS:

  • 0.83: Goals per game the USA has allowed in 2014
  • 1: USA’s FIFA ranking
  • 2.67: Goals per game the USA has scored in 2014
  • 3: Number of players who have played in all 12 games so far this year: O’Reilly, Press and Sauerbrunn
  • 4: Assists by Carli Lloyd and Christen Press in 2014, most on the team
  • 10: Number of U.S. players to score a goal in 2014
  • 12: Goals in 24 career games for U.S. forward Christen Press
  • 50: Career goals by Carli Lloyd, most ever for a WNT player who has played exclusively as a midfielder
  • 71: Career shutouts by Hope Solo, tied for the all-time WNT record with Briana Scurry
  • 99: Minutes on field per goal averaged by Abby Wambach in her career
  • 107: U.S. victories when Wambach scores a goal (107-2-8 overall)
  • 130: Minutes on field per goal averaged by Mia Hamm in her career
  • 294: Caps by Christie Rampone, second all-time to Kristine Lilly (352)

JILL ELLIS FACT FILE : After her second stint as interim head coach for the U.S. Women’s National Team, a capacity in which she coached two games this year – a win against China PR and a tie against Canada – Jill Ellis was officially named the eighth head coach of the U.S. WNT on May 16. After coaching the final seven games of 2012 when she compiled a 5-0-2 record, Ellis officially started the job with a 6-0-2 record and is now 7-0-3. Ellis has stepped away from her job as Development Director for the U.S. Women’s National Teams, a job she was appointed to in January of 2011, but will still work closely with U.S. Women’s National Team Technical Director April Heinrichs to oversee the USA’s youth teams.

  • Ellis has extensive experience in the U.S. Women’s National Team programs having served as an assistant coach for the U.S. Women’s National Team under Pia Sundhage, helping the team to a gold medal at the 2008 Olympics. She has served two stints as head coach of the U.S. Under-20 Women’s National Team, guiding the squad to the CONCACAF title in 2010 and to the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup in Germany.
  • Ellis also had two stints as the head coach of the U.S. Under-21 Women’s National Team, the second starting in the middle of 2005, after which she guided the team to the Nordic Cup in Sweden. She also coached the U-21s to the Nordic Cup title in Germany in 2000.
  • Ellis was a scout for the USA at the 2000 Olympics in Sydney, Australia, and has served as an assistant coach with the U.S. U-21s and U.S. U-16 Girls’ National Teams.
  • Ellis joined U.S. Soccer full-time after a highly successful 12-year run as the head women’s soccer coach for the UCLA Bruins. Ellis led UCLA to eight NCAA Final Fours, including seven in a row from 2003-2009, and won six straight conference titles from 2003-2008. She finished her time in Westwood with a record of 229-45-14. Ellis, who was also head coach at the University of Illinois, has an all-time collegiate coaching record of 248-63-14.
  • She was the 2000 NSCAA National Coach of the Year after leading the Bruins to the NCAA Final in just her second season as head coach.
  • Ellis arrived in Westwood after heading the University of Illinois women's soccer program for two years. In 1998, she brought the Fighting Illini to a 12-8 record and a first-ever Big Ten Tournament berth. Prior to coaching at Illinois, Ellis served as an assistant coach at the University of Virginia for one year (1996-97), at Maryland for three years (1994-96) and at North Carolina State for another three years (1988-90). As an assistant coach at North Carolina State, Ellis helped the Wolfpack secure the 1988 ACC title and an NCAA Final Four appearance.
  • A forward during her playing days at the College of William & Mary from 1984-87, Ellis was a Third-Team All-American in 1987. In 1984, Ellis helped Braddock Road in Virginia to the Under-19 club national championship.
  • Ellis grew up in Portsmouth, England, and came to the United States in 1981 at the age of 15. She also lived in Singapore for two years while her father helped to develop a national soccer program in that country. She earned her B.A. in English Literature and Composition from the College of William & Mary in 1988 and currently resides in Los Angeles. She has a USSF “A” coaching license.

IN FOCUS: SWITZERLAND
Schweizerischer Fussballverband
Founded: 1895 (Joined FIFA in 1904)
Head Coach: Martina Voss-Tecklenburg
FIFA World Ranking: 19
FIFA World Cups: 2015 will be first participation
Best FIFA World Cup Finish: None

Switzerland Women's National Team Roster By Position
GOALKEEPERS (2): 1-Thalmann Gaëlle (MSV Duisburg), 12-Senia Michel (FF USV Jena)
DEFENDERS (5): 2-Nicole Remund (FC Zürich Frauen), 5-Noëlle Maritz (VfL Wolfsburg), 6-Selina Kuster (FC Zürich Frauen), 14-Rahel Kiwic (MSV Duisburg), 15- Caroline Abbé (FC Bayern München)
MIDFIELDERS (6): 7-Martina Moser (TSG 1899 Hoffenheim), 8-Sandy Maendly (Hellas Verona), 9-Lia Wälti (FFC Turbine Potsdam), 16-Fabienne Humm (FC Zürich Frauen), 18-Vanessa Bürki (FC Bayern München), 22-Vanessa Bernauer (VfL Wolfsburg)
FORWARDS (5): 10-Ramona Bachmann (FC Rosengard), 11-Lara Dickenmann (FC Olympique Lyonnais), 13-Ana Maria Crnogorcevic (FFC Frankfurt), 19-Eseosa Aigbogun (FC Basel 1893), 23-Fabienne Bangerter (SC Freiburg)

SWITZERLAND ROSTER NOTES

  • Switzerland will be the 25th European country that the USA has faced in its history, although several of those countries no longer exist.
  • Lara Dickenmann, who plays for France power Olympic Lyon and played college soccer at Ohio State (where she was the Big Ten Conference Freshman of the Year in 2004), leads Switzerland in Women’s World Cup qualifying with 10 goals. She also played for the New Jersey Wildcats and Jersey Sky Blue during her time in college.
  • Fabienne Humm has scored eight times for Switzerland in qualifying, as has former Women’s Professional Soccer player Ramona Bachmann, who played for the Atlanta Beat. Ana Maria Crnogorčević, who plays for Frankfurt in Germany, has six goals in qualifying.
  • Switzerland’s coach is former Germany international Martina Voss-Tecklenburg who played more than 100 matches for her country and played in the 1991, 1995 and 1999 FIFA Women’s World Cups as well as the 1996 Olympics.

USA VS. SWITZERLAND:

  • While the teams have not met at the senior level, they did meet in group play at the 2010 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup in Germany, a 5-0 win for the USA in which Sydney Leroux scored a hat trick.

LAST TIME
On the field for the USA:
June 19, 2014 – Rentschler Field; East Hartford, Conn.

USA    2    Morgan 56, 85
FRA    2    Necib 27; Henry 68

Lineups:
USA: 24-Ashlyn Harris; 11-Ali Krieger, 4-Becky Sauerbrunn, 6-Whitney Engen (3-Christie Rampone, 46), 25-Meghan Klingenberg (5-Kelley O’Hara, 79); 15-Allie Long (17-Tobin Heath, 60), 10-Carli Lloyd (capt.), 12-Lauren Holiday; 9-Heather O’Reilly (13-Alex Morgan, 46), 2-Sydney Leroux (8-Amy Rodriguez, 79), 23-Christen Press
Subs Not Used: 7-Morgan Brian, 18-Nicole Barnhart
Head Coach: Jill Ellis

FRA: 16-Sarah Bouhaddi; 8-Jessica Houara, 2-Wendy Renard, 4-Laura Goerges, 24-Julie Soyer; 6-Amandine Henry, 15-Elise Bussaglia, 14-Louisa Necib, 12- Elodie Thomis; 9-Eugenie Le Sommer (10-Camille Abily, 84), 17-Gaetane Thiney (18-Marie Laure Delie, 89)
Subs Not Used: 1-Celine Deville, 3-Laure Boulleau, 5-Sabrina Delannoy, 7-Viviane Asseyi, 11-Laetitia Tonazzi, 13-Pauline Crammer, 19-Marina Makanza, 20-Anaig Butel, 21-Laetitia Phiippe, 22-Amel Hamraoui, 23-Kheria Hamraoui, 25-Ines Jurena
Head Coach: Philippe Bergeroo

Alyssa Naeher Replaces Ashlyn Harris on U.S. WNT Roster for Switzerland Match on Aug. 20

CHICAGO (Aug. 18, 2014) – Goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher has replaced Ashlyn Harris on the U.S. U.S. Women’s National Team roster that will face Switzerland on Aug. 20 in front of a sold-out crowd at WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary, North Carolina.

Harris suffered a concussion playing with the Washington Spirit on Aug. 2. While she was expected to be fully recovered in time for the Switzerland match, the U.S. Soccer and Washington Spirit medical staffs determined she will need a few more days of rest and recovery.

Naeher, who is uncapped, has made 102 saves this season for the Boston Breakers (by far the league leader) and was named the National Women’s Soccer League Player of the Week for her stellar performance in her team’s 2-0 victory against Portland Thorns FC on Aug. 10.

U.S. Women’s National Team Roster by Position
GOALKEEPERS (2): Alyssa Naeher (Boston Breakers), Hope Solo (Seattle Reign FC)
DEFENDERS (6): Crystal Dunn (Washington Spirit), Julie Johnston (Chicago Red Stars), Meghan Klingenberg (Houston Dash), Ali Krieger (Washington Spirit), Christie Rampone (Sky Blue FC), Becky Sauerbrunn (FC Kansas City)
MIDFIELDERS (6): Morgan Brian (Virginia), Lauren Holiday (FC Kansas City), Carli Lloyd (WNY Flash), Allie Long (Portland Thorns FC), Heather O’Reilly (Boston Breakers), Megan Rapinoe (Seattle Reign FC)
FORWARDS (5): Sydney Leroux (Seattle Reign FC), Alex Morgan (Portland Thorns FC), Christen Press (Chicago Red Stars), Amy Rodriguez (FC Kansas City), Abby Wambach (WNY Flash)

Solo on Verge of U.S. Soccer Shutout Record

As the U.S. Women’s National Team heads into its first fall friendly on Aug. 20 against Switzerland in front of a sold-out crowd at WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary, North Carolina, U.S. goalkeeper Hope Solo is on the verge of breaking a long-standing U.S. Soccer record. Solo, who has earned 71 shutouts in her 152 caps since debuting for the USA in 2000, needs just one more clean sheet to surpass Briana Scurry’s record, set over 173 caps from 1994-2008.

“It’s taken a lot of work over many years to get to this point, but of course no goalkeeper earns a shutout without their teammates,” said Solo. “The U.S. team has always taken pride not only in its defense and in winning games, but also in keeping opponents off the scoreboard. It’s been fun to play with so many players over the years and especially those in the back, so it’s an honor to be in a position to earn a record like this one. Hopefully, we can earn this shutout soon, and keep earning them as we work toward qualifying for the Women’s World Cup next summer.”

Solo, who made her debut on April 5, 2000, in an 8-0 victory against Iceland, is part of a six-goalkeeper club that earned a shutout in their first senior team cap for the United States. She would not earn another until 2002 and got her third in 2005 when she became the USA’s starter and began racking up the clean sheets.

Solo’s shutouts have spanned the globe with 30 of the 71 coming outside the United States in South Korea, China PR, Mexico, Norway, Germany, Canada, Japan and England. She has also earned shutouts against 16 different countries, the most coming against Canada (9) and China (8), which are two of the USA’s most frequent opponents.

She has played behind almost three dozen different defenders during her international career, but the back four for her first shutout consisted of Christie Pearce (now Rampone), current U.S. U-20 Women’s World Cup Team head coach Michelle French, Nandi Pryce and Danielle Slaton.

The back four for her most recent shutout, on June 14 against France, has one name in common with that back four 14 years ago: Christie Rampone. The current U.S. captain was joined by Ali Krieger, Becky Sauerbrunn and Stephanie Cox as the USA won 1-0 in Tampa, Florida.

Solo has averaged just over five shutouts a year during her 14-year international career, and her high came during the Olympic gold-medal winning year of 2008 when she notched 13 clean sheets. Five of Solo’s shutouts have been 0-0 affairs, but she has been in the nets for a remarkable 19 matches that ended 1-0 for the USA. She has guarded the goal for the USA for 12,552 minutes.

Hope Solo

As a 5-foot-9 athletic specimen out of Richland in eastern Washington, she has always been known as a big-game player. She has put together some of her greatest performances when the lights were brightest and the stakes were the highest. And the statistics bear that out. Eleven of Solo’s shutouts have come in world championship play, five in the FIFA Women’s World Cup and six during the Olympics.

In fact, 42 of Solo’s career shutouts – almost 60 percent – have come in tournament competitions that include world championships, qualifying for the World Cup and Olympics and elite tournaments such as the Algarve Cup, which is held annually in Portugal.

She won the Golden Glove as the top goalkeeper at the 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Germany and also won the Bronze Ball as the third-best player, the first time a goalkeeper has been voted one of the top three players in the tournament.

Solo has earned shutouts under five different U.S. WNT head coaches, including the most (37) for Pia Sundhage. She is also closing in on Scurry’s record of 133 career wins for the U.S. WNT. Solo is at 117 wins and counting.

Scurry’s last shutout came in June of 2007, so the record has stood for more than seven years. Soon, it will fall and #Solo72 will take its place.

Jill Ellis Names 19 Players to Face Switzerland on Aug. 20 in Cary, North Carolina

CHICAGO (Aug. 12, 2014) – U.S. Women’s National Team head coach Jill Ellis has named 19 players for the meeting with Switzerland on Wednesday, Aug. 20, at WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary, North Carolina. The match, which has been sold out since July 25, will kick off at 7:30 p.m. ET and will be broadcast on ussoccer.com.

“With the very short time together, we’re just bringing in these 19 players, but we’re excited about the chance to play a team that has some talented attackers and that will be in the World Cup next summer,” said Ellis. “It’s been tremendous to watch our players compete in the NWSL this season and I’m really excited to get them together for what will be another great test for our team.”

The match will mark the first meeting between the sides at the women’s senior level, a rare occurrence for the U.S. team, which has been playing international soccer for 29 years.

Eighteen of the 19 players named to the roster played in the National Women’s Soccer League this season and at least 10 will be heading back to their clubs for semifinal playoff matches the following weekend. Midfielder Morgan Brian, a rising senior at the University of Virginia, is the only non-professional named to the roster.

The roster includes five players who will be returning to the area where they played their college soccer at the University of North Carolina in goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris, defenders Meghan Klingenberg and Crystal Dunn and midfielders Allie Long and Heather O’Reilly.

The match will likely mark the first attempt for U.S. goalkeeper Hope Solo to break the USA’s all-time shutout record. She is currently tied with former U.S. great Briana Scurry at 71 career shutouts.

Switzerland is one of six nations that have already qualified for the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup, where it will join host Canada. Switzerland has won European Group 3 with one match left to play in qualifying, taking 25 points from nine games with an 8-0-1 record ahead of Iceland and Denmark. The achievement marks the first time Switzerland has qualified for a Women’s World Cup at the senior level.

Additional Notes:

  • Jill Ellis will name 18 players among the 19 to suit up for the match.
  • Switzerland will be the 25th European country that the USA has faced in its history, although several of those countries no longer exist.
  • The game on Aug. 20 will be the sixth time the U.S. Women have played at WakeMed Soccer Park, but the first since the venue was expanded to seat 10,000 fans. It will be the first sell-out.
  • The U.S. Women have previously played 11 matches in North Carolina – five in Cary, two in Charlotte, three in Davidson and one in Greensboro.
  • The USA comes into the match with a 7-2-3 record in 2014.
  • The five U.S. strikers have scored a combined 31 goals in the NWSL this season, although Alex Morgan and Abby Wambach have missed significant parts of the season due to injury and Christen Press will have played less than half the season’s matches after returning from her time in Europe.
  • The USA’s five NWSL midfielders have actually outscored the forwards, combining for 35 goals, even though Megan Rapinoe has played just a handful of games for Seattle Reign FC.
  • Should Christie Rampone play in the match it would be her 295th cap, meaning she would have a chance to hit 300 during the 2014 CONCACAF Women’s Championship in October.

U.S. Women’s National Team Roster by Position
GOALKEEPERS (2): Ashlyn Harris (Washington Spirit), Hope Solo (Seattle Reign FC)
DEFENDERS (6): Crystal Dunn (Washington Spirit), Julie Johnston (Chicago Red Stars), Meghan Klingenberg (Houston Dash), Ali Krieger (Washington Spirit), Christie Rampone (Sky Blue FC), Becky Sauerbrunn (FC Kansas City)
MIDFIELDERS (6): Morgan Brian (Virginia), Lauren Holiday (FC Kansas City), Carli Lloyd (WNY Flash), Allie Long (Portland Thorns FC), Heather O’Reilly (Boston Breakers), Megan Rapinoe (Seattle Reign FC)
FORWARDS (5): Sydney Leroux (Seattle Reign FC), Alex Morgan (Portland Thorns), Christen Press (Chicago Red Stars), Amy Rodriguez (FC Kansas City), Abby Wambach (WNY Flash)

Solo on Verge of U.S. Soccer Shutout Record

As the U.S. Women’s National Team heads into its first fall friendly on Aug. 20 against Switzerland in front of a sold-out crowd at WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary, North Carolina, U.S. goalkeeper Hope Solo is on the verge of breaking a long-standing U.S. Soccer record. Solo, who has earned 71 shutouts in her 152 caps since debuting for the USA in 2000, needs just one more clean sheet to surpass Briana Scurry’s record, set over 173 caps from 1994-2008.

“It’s taken a lot of work over many years to get to this point, but of course no goalkeeper earns a shutout without their teammates,” said Solo. “The U.S. team has always taken pride not only in its defense and in winning games, but also in keeping opponents off the scoreboard. It’s been fun to play with so many players over the years and especially those in the back, so it’s an honor to be in a position to earn a record like this one. Hopefully, we can earn this shutout soon, and keep earning them as we work toward qualifying for the Women’s World Cup next summer.”

Solo, who made her debut on April 5, 2000, in an 8-0 victory against Iceland, is part of a six-goalkeeper club that earned a shutout in their first senior team cap for the United States. She would not earn another until 2002 and got her third in 2005 when she became the USA’s starter and began racking up the clean sheets.

Solo’s shutouts have spanned the globe with 30 of the 71 coming outside the United States in South Korea, China PR, Mexico, Norway, Germany, Canada, Japan and England. She has also earned shutouts against 16 different countries, the most coming against Canada (9) and China (8), which are two of the USA’s most frequent opponents.

She has played behind almost three dozen different defenders during her international career, but the back four for her first shutout consisted of Christie Pearce (now Rampone), current U.S. U-20 Women’s World Cup Team head coach Michelle French, Nandi Pryce and Danielle Slaton.

The back four for her most recent shutout, on June 14 against France, has one name in common with that back four 14 years ago: Christie Rampone. The current U.S. captain was joined by Ali Krieger, Becky Sauerbrunn and Stephanie Cox as the USA won 1-0 in Tampa, Florida.

Solo has averaged just over five shutouts a year during her 14-year international career, and her high came during the Olympic gold-medal winning year of 2008 when she notched 13 clean sheets. Five of Solo’s shutouts have been 0-0 affairs, but she has been in the nets for a remarkable 19 matches that ended 1-0 for the USA. She has guarded the goal for the USA for 12,552 minutes.

Hope Solo

As a 5-foot-9 athletic specimen out of Richland in eastern Washington, she has always been known as a big-game player. She has put together some of her greatest performances when the lights were brightest and the stakes were the highest. And the statistics bear that out. Eleven of Solo’s shutouts have come in world championship play, five in the FIFA Women’s World Cup and six during the Olympics.

In fact, 42 of Solo’s career shutouts – almost 60 percent – have come in tournament competitions that include world championships, qualifying for the World Cup and Olympics and elite tournaments such as the Algarve Cup, which is held annually in Portugal.

She won the Golden Glove as the top goalkeeper at the 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Germany and also won the Bronze Ball as the third-best player, the first time a goalkeeper has been voted one of the top three players in the tournament.

Solo has earned shutouts under five different U.S. WNT head coaches, including the most (37) for Pia Sundhage. She is also closing in on Scurry’s record of 133 career wins for the U.S. WNT. Solo is at 117 wins and counting.

Scurry’s last shutout came in June of 2007, so the record has stood for more than seven years. Soon, it will fall and #Solo72 will take its place.

WNT Qualifying Quest Begins

The U.S. Women’s National Team will barnstorm the Midwest and East Coast during the 2014 CONCACAF Women’s Championship that will be held from Oct. 15-26 in four host cities: Chicago, Kansas City, Washington, D.C. and Philadelphia.

At stake: three automatic berths to the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Canada. After a successful second season of the National Women’s Soccer League, many of the U.S. players will get the chance to play in front of the same fans that cheered them on for the clubs as all the group matches will be played in NWSL cities. With a tremendous 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil setting a new standard for support of the U.S. National Team, the focus now turns to the U.S. Women as they begin their quest to qualify for a seventh consecutive Women’s World Cup.

Coaching Q&A: Women's National Team Head Coach Jill Ellis

The U.S. Soccer Coaching Education Department continues a new series of articles to introduce coaches to its National Instructional Staff. Each month, the department will feature a Q&A with a member of the staff that will delve into his or her background and coaching experience.

The National Instructional Staff consists of top coaches from across the country, leading the sport in coaching education. We aim to share with coaches a small glimpse of our instructors' history, knowledge and expertise that they provide at U.S. Soccer educational events.

Quote Sheet: New WNT Head Coach Jill Ellis and U.S. Soccer President Sunil Gulati

Opening remarks and introduction of U.S. WNT head coach Jill Ellis:
Sunil Gulati: “ Jill Ellis will become the eighth coach of our Women’s National Team in our history. We’re very excited that Jill has agreed to take the team through the World Cup and beyond. We had a pretty short and focused process since we made the decision (to change coaches) about a month ago. In that process we interviewed three candidates that were finalists with a search committee that consisted of Dan Flynn, April Heinrichs, and myself, and from that group we decided that Jill was the best candidate. We didn’t consider any current NWSL coaches. The thought of doing double-duty or waiting until they were available didn’t make sense to us. In Jill, we have someone who knows our program, who has been extraordinarily successful, who has coached the team very recently with success, and we are very confident in her abilities to lead the team forward. The marching orders are pretty straightforward from our perspective- and her own view and from the team- and that is success next summer in Canada and in Rio a year later….We should also mention that we have also announced today, along with CONCACAF, that we will host the CONCACAF Qualifying Tournament for the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup in the United States. That will be in October, so Jill has already brought us good luck in that sense that we will be playing at home.”

Initial thoughts and feelings about being named head coach:
Jill Ellis: “Sunil, thank you so much. I’m truly honored and humbled by this opportunity. I want to thank Sunil and Dan Flynn for their investment in me and this tremendous opportunity. I’m really excited to get going. I actually love the fact that qualifiers are right around the corner and the World Cup is next year because it does bring laser focus. I feel like I have a very good handle on the current core of players. I’m excited to bring them in and start to gel and get ready for qualifiers. To echo Sunil, I’m delighted that we will be playing on home turf for those qualifiers.”

On why she withdrew from consideration during the last head coach search:
JE : “I think it was a personal and a timing issue for me. I had been involved with Pia Sundhage’s staff in 2008 and I have worked for U.S. Soccer since then, and obviously I was still at UCLA. Having done double-duty in two roles for a long time and then really focusing on my youth role, I really didn’t think that the timing was right for me. Since then, I have moved and my personal life is a little bit different but I just recognize that this is a unique opportunity. It felt right. My energy is there and the excitement of moving forward with this group is a huge honor.”

On why Ellis was hired and what characteristics she possesses:
SG: “We think Jill’s got all the right credentials in terms of experience and how she relates to the players. We’ve been able to see that first hand in the two times she’s been with the senior team and previously with our youth teams. She gets top marks in all the work she’s been doing on the technical side with all of our programs over the last several years. It’s all of those things; it’s ability, it’s leadership, it’s experience, it’s success, and more recently working with the senior team.”

On why the CONCACAF Qualifying Tournament for the 2015 Women’s World Cup was moved to the U.S:
SG : “In terms of the CONCACAF tournament, the original plan was to host the tournament in Mexico. They had some issues with the venues that they had been planning to use. We talked with Mexico and with CONCACAF and we were happy to step up, and CONCACAF was pleased with that possibility. It was a relatively straightforward move.”

On the time until the World Cup:
SG: “I don’t quite view it with the same urgency that some people have said. It’s not as if the team has been idle for a long period of time. They’ve been playing regular games with mixed results. The players, unlike a situation when we didn’t have a league, are playing week in and week out and there are 13 months until the Women’s World Cup with a Qualifying Tournament between now and then. The urgency in terms of success in the tournament has little to do with the fact that it’s in Canada. This team wants to succeed every time we step into a World Championship or Olympics, or frankly any time they are on the field. That’s the goal. There’s plenty of time for Jill to get the team playing the way she’d like it to, playing the way we’re capable of and being on the winner’s stand next summer.”

On her knowledge of the players and goals for the team as the head coach:
JE: “My familiarity with the players is a huge plus for me because I’ve worked with these players in the youth program and I have seen the younger players who have come in and integrated with the veterans. I have a really good feel for the players, and they are in a good environment right now. The focus for me will be about bringing in players, and the initial piece will be about trying to establish a starting core and start to build relationships to get ready for qualifiers. As always, after qualifying, it’s then about looking and reassessing again. That’s a normal process that you go through once you get through qualifiers. Often those rosters aren’t the same from qualifiers to World Cup. Not beating around the bush, I know the expectation, I embrace the expectation. I know that we want to win and I think that this group is capable of winning. That’s what we want. It is always the expectation, and people have asked me if that’s something that’s intimidating, and I say ‘no’ because when you work for U.S. Soccer, it is about winning gold medals and being on the first place podium. It’s just a tremendous opportunity. I relish it.”

On when venues will be announced for the CONCACAF Qualifying Tournament:
SG : “I’m not sure exactly when that will happen. It will be in conjunction with CONCACAF. I would guess in June, but they may choose to have us announce that a little bit later given that the men’s tournament is going on. Certainly during the next month or month-and-a-hal,f I would think is when we would announce the venues. We have a lead on it already.”

On feelings about her history and knowledge of current players:
JE: “The only two players I haven’t directly coached as a head coach have been Abby [Wambach] and Christie [Rampone]. All of the other players, I was with the U-21s and the U-20s. How does that help me? I could very readily say to the players that these are the areas we need to continue to refine and get better to help us be successful. Knowing their strengths and the mentality is going to be important as well. Being connected to the youth, I’ve seen the U-20s from the last group. Julie Johnston and Morgan Brian; I have seen them competing. I think it gives me a really good handle of not just what’s in front of me but what’s also potentially coming down the line. With this group, the core has been established and what I love about them is they do embrace the new players. This group is locked on, they want to win. For the veteran players, bringing younger players in that can help the core, they are open and welcome to that. Abby is a tremendous role model. I think she will continue to have a major role with this team. On and off the field, she brings so much to this group. Alex Morgan hasn’t been in for quite a while. She’s been hurt. I know she’s now returning to some modified training but she will obviously be very welcome back. In her absence, Sydney Leroux has stepped up and established herself. We have a really good blend of younger players and experienced players. The common denominator is that they’re just very, very hungry to win this World Cup.”

On seeing current players in the youth programs and existing relationships:
JE: “The first time I saw Sydney, she had black and white hair and she was 14 years old and scored one of the best youth goals I have ever seen. I’ve known Sydney for a long, long time and coached her in college. I remember seeing Carli [Lloyd] with the U-21s and I went over to her and I said ‘I’ve not seen a female strike a ball as well as you do.’ Heather O’Reilly’s mentality, Megan Rapinoe’s creativity, and all of those things I saw when they were young players. It’s been awesome to see them progress and now be big personalities for our senior team. Lauren Holiday and Rapinoe were I think 18-years-old and I was over in Europe with them. Just to see where they are now, it’s a credit to them and it’s a credit to our process and what U.S. Soccer is layered in.”

On filling the vacancy of Women’s Youth Development Director left by the hiring of Ellis as head coach:
SG: “The process has started about how we would fill the role and the vacancy. Since April was part of the search committee we talked about that some. I don’t think we will bring on an individual in the immediate future in the next few weeks. But, we are talking about how we might shift some responsibilities of some people that are involved in the program already and down the road, that could be this year, have someone else on a full-time basis. Jill will obviously be completely focused on the Women’s National Team but has lots of experience there so she can certainly step in when needed in terms of overall guidance with some of our youth teams.”

On the hiring process now in comparison to the last search for a head coach:
SG: “The process wasn’t that much different. We had a lot of candidates the last time, it’s how many we chose to interview. We had a lot of interest this time but chose to interview three people. In the last go-round, we had chosen to interview six. It certainly would have been seven had Jill not withdrawn from the process. That part of the process isn’t dissimilar. The timing is different because it’s 13 months until the World Cup. Therefore the focus has to be much more on the short term preparation of the National Team. On the other hand, Jill has a much greater knowledge of our programs and our youth programs and the technical side of our programs than virtually any candidate that we talked to last time. She could still do some of that, I won’t say with her eyes closed but with her eyes wide open, when there’s time to do that. The focus is very much on the job description which is to win next summer.”

On players' positive comments about her as a coach:
JE: “In the interim everyone loves you (laughter). But connecting with players is a part of who I am as a coach. Building relationships so there is a trust there so you can have challenging conversations. While it is obviously very nice and appreciated, what it said to me is that who I am and what I am about as far as relating to players is important, even to the senior players. It was great to get their vote of confidence, and now it’s creating an environment where they’re continuing to be bought in to the process and the whole team environment.”

On how she sees herself fitting into the evolution of the U.S. WNT’s style of play:
JE: “I think, first of all, I have an appreciation for the game and I love to see the game played in an aesthetic way. I was actually at the game in 2011 when Japan beat Germany in Germany and I think it was a little bit of a tipping point for the women’s game because, suddenly, having the ball was the priority. For me, personally, being able to keep possession, create more chances, build from back to front through the midfield, is very, very important. But I also recognize that we do have unique qualities. We have technical players and we have technical athletes, as well. Much like the modern game, the counter is going to be a part of our weaponry just because of the pace and the precision that we have to make that pass. But also, you must be able to control the tempo of the game. I think that’s the style that I’ve always believed in. I think the players I tried to recruit at UCLA were players that could definitely, in the midfield area, keep possession of the ball. So, for me, the game has to meet the challenges and the opponents will sometimes sit in on us and we have to be thoughtful with movement and tempo, and there will be teams that will press us and we have to be able to punish teams with a counter. I certainly think that aesthetics and efficiency will be key for me.”

On whether or not any qualifying matches for the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup in the U.S. will be played on turf:
SG: “We haven’t decided on the venues so I can’t comment on that. When we do, is it possible that some of matches will be played on artificial surface? Yes, it’s possible, but since we haven’t selected any venues yet, I can’t say for sure.”

On how much the two matches Ellis coached as an interim head coach affected the decision to hire her:
SG: “None of the these things come down to one specific game, and certainly not friendly games when Jill had the team for a few weeks. Obviously we were able to observe her interaction with the players and so on, but they weren’t directly impactful.”

Ellis Takes the Reins

They say timing is everything, but perhaps putting in the time is everything.

In the case of new U.S. Women’s National Team head coach Jill Ellis, that time began as a 15-year-old coming to America from Portsmouth, England, with a passion for soccer shared by few women in 1981, or at least millions less than in 2014.

The daughter of a soccer coach, Ellis grew up in the American soccer system. She won a national club title at the under-19 level, had a stellar playing career at the College of William and Mary and went on to coach more than 300 NCAA Division I matches.  Along the way, she coached at virtually every level of the U.S. Women’s National Team programs, watching several generations of female players grow from teenagers into seasoned and highly successful professionals with the U.S. Women’s National Team, which became the most successful women’s soccer team in the world.


Q & A with Mary Harvey

ussoccer.com: Could you give a brief overview of the trip, beginning from when you were invited to go?

Mary Harvey: “We received an email from Pam Perkins at U.S. Soccer saying, ‘We have an envoy trip to Jordan,’ and, ‘Is anyone interested in going?’ I hit reply and said, ‘Oh my God, this is going to be an amazing trip,’ because here is what Jordan is doing to promote girls’ and women’s soccer and wrote all these things I knew: Prince Ali’s efforts, they’re hosting the Under-17 Women’s World Cup in 2015, they have a foundation called the Asian Football Development Project that’s investing in the Gulf and Middle East regions. They’re really doing a lot. I was like, this is a great opportunity, you should send somebody big like Mia or Brandi or Foudy. Then they came back and said, ‘Well, congratulations, you’re going.’ I was like, ‘No, no, you missed the point. Send someone, someone’s heard of!’ And they ended up sending me and I was obviously really excited that Danielle Slaton’s going. In preparation, the embassy in Jordan reached out to the Jordanian Football Association, as well as different schools in the area, public schools and universities, and put together a program for us. We then got on a conference and Danielle and I gave our input on different things. We asked for a couple things. The things we asked for were, we’d like to do something with the embassy’s kids themselves. We did that in Iraq and it seemed to be really appreciated. We also wanted to potentially have a round-table discussion with people in power to make decisions around access to sport for girls, and so they added that as well.”

From Crepes to Peladas, U.S. WNT Immersed in Algarve

As the team with the most championships at the Algarve Cup since its inception in 1994, the U.S. Women’s National Team has certainly produced on the field, but that doesn’t mean that they didn’t enjoy their time off it. Here are six memorable clips from the U.S. WNT during their previous trips to the Algarve region:

Portugal 101 with HAO: Heather O’Reilly’s tour of Albufeira in 2009 once again proved her worth as a tour guide and gave fans a look at the area where the U.S. team stayed for years at the tournament. It seems her degree in education is definitely paying off, although her cartography skills could use a little work. To learn the basics about Albufeira and the U.S. WNT’s experience there, give this tour with HAO a watch. If you enjoy O’Reilly’s tour guide skills, here is a similar video when she showed us around Guangdong Olympic Stadium in China way back in 2007.

Secret Diet of Champions: Watch the U.S. WNT players treat themselves with these made-to-order crepes in 2007, followed by an attempt at a crepe-making from defender Heather Mitts. The final result received rave reviews from the team, even Aly Wagner, the ultimate crepe critic. (Warning: This crepe making and eating might produce hunger and crepe cravings.) But as shown in the video, “the bananas make it healthy,” and helped spur the U.S. WNT to a title that year.

Life of Two Souvenir Connoisseurs: Watch Megan Rapinoe and Lori Lindsey as they spend the afternoon souvenir shopping near the U.S. WNT’s hotel in the Albufeira, Portugal, in search of a perfect gift for each other.

Creative Soccer Tennis: Tobin Heath and Yael Averbuch got creative with their soccer tennis at the team’s hotel in Portugal in 2013. Hopefully the other guests didn’t mind too much as Heath and Averbuch turned the location into their own personal playground. Watch as they use people, pillows, chairs, plants and swimming pools as their net before winning the 2013 Algarve Cup.

The Other 2009 Algarve Cup: The spirit of the 2009 Sandcastle Competition forever lives on within the rivalries among the forwards, midfielders, defenders and goalkeepers. The sandcastle building teams, divided by position, put forth total effort, but alas, there could only be one winner. Watch as the champions celebrate and attribute the win to their excellent teamwork.

Can You Spell Pelada? Heath and Averbuch entertain yet again in their 2011 Trick Shot Battle. The “goal” was to spell pelada, the Portuguese word for a kick-around or pickup game. They earned letters by scoring trick shots, and whoever got to all six letters first wins. Also, watch the video that started it all, the original Ball Trick Battle from 2006 featuring Heath and Casey Nogueira.

Rampone Returns to Her Roots

It’s a story almost too amazing to be true.

Around 1920, a Scottish immigrant named William Dowie traveled to the New World in search of the American dream, leaving behind a 10-year career as a goalkeeper for Raith Rovers, a small club founded in 1883 in Kirkcaldy, about 45 miles east of Glasgow.

Is it possible that nearly 92 years later his great-granddaughter would return to Scotland – Glasgow, in fact! – to captain the United States in the 2012 Olympics?

It is. And she has.

U.S. captain Christie Rampone (née Pearce) grew up knowing only her great-grandfather’s name, that he was from Scotland, and that he might have played professional soccer around the turn of the century, but little else.

On the USA’s trip to Scotland in April of 2011 (piggybacked off a match in London) to play a closed-door scrimmage during the Women’s World Cup preparations, Rampone mentioned her Scottish roots to U.S. Women’s National Team press officer Aaron Heifetz, who took this wee bit of information and asked the Scottish Football Association if it was possible to track down anything else on her great-grandfather.

The USA’s team liaison, Shirley, placed a few calls to the proper folks back at the federation headquarters in Glasgow and struck gold. Lo and behold, in a country that can trace its history as an independent sovereign state back to the early Middle Ages and seems to chronicle that history – especially the football history – extremely well, they found some information on Mr. Bill Dowie.

In the humorously-named Always Next Season: 125 Years of Raith Rovers Football Club, there is a listing for a goalkeeper named William Dowie, who played for the club from 1905-1915. He was signed from Dunnikier Athletic and played 130 games for Raith, oddly scoring two goals! (Maybe on penalty kicks?)

A phone call to Christie’s mom (William Dowie’s granddaughter) back in New Jersey revealed he was born in 1886, which would have made him a very appropriate 19 years old when he debuted for Raith Rovers. Mrs. Pearce also said he came over to the United States at the age of 34, which would have been in 1920, five years after he had finished his career at Rovers. Once again, entirely plausible.

In the book, Dowie was described thusly in a report on a match from around 1905:

“Rovers’ young goalkeeper Dowie was a veritable octopus in goal, and gave a marvelous display of fistic prowess, punching the ball clear in all directions and repeatedly over the bar.”

And we thought Christie’s amazing athleticism came from her father’s side of the family? She has never been called an octopus, though.
Rampone
In 1906, Dowie helped preserve a win over St. Bernards, who were granted a penalty kick late in the game, but “Bill Dowie saved both the kick and the rebound.”

The real find in the book, though, was a picture of William Dowie. After staring intently at the photo, Christie said that he did in fact look like her uncle Bill Dowie (the name was passed down), her mom’s brother.

By the time Rampone returned to Scotland for the Olympics, word had spread that the captain of the USA had some real Scottish blood

That fact has made her popular with the Scottish media in Glasgow, who are intrigued and excited about her story and have almost embraced her as one of their own.

In fact, a crew from the Olympic Broadcasting Service, which is in charge of producing content for all the Olympics rights holders, produced a feature on Rampone. The crew traveled to Raith Rovers to find out some more about Bill Dowie, came back with even more photos of their former goalkeeper and got a jersey signed for Rampone by the current team. In fact, the folks at the club were over the moon that Rampone had returned “home.”

Perhaps the best thing about the story is that Bill Dowie, despite leaving this world years ago, has brought his family together in his homeland.

No fewer than 16 members of the Dowie/Pearce clan were inspired to come to Scotland to experience the country of their ancestor.

“The cool thing is I never would have discovered any of this had I not made it to the national team and played long enough to travel to Scotland last year and then make it to this Olympics,” said Rampone. “We never really had any information on him and we’ve all learned a lot. My mother wasn’t originally coming to the first two games, and then my uncle decided to come when he found out it was in Scotland, then my aunt jumped on board…it’s pretty special to have so many family members here in the bRamponeirthplace of my great-grandfather.”

Neither Rampone’s mom nor her own father (who worked on ships to carve out a better life for his family) played soccer, so the soccer gene seems to have skipped two generations. In retrospect, perhaps all those genes were saved up for the U.S. captain, who at age 37 and after having two children is still one of the fittest, fastest and strongest players on the U.S. team.

What Rampone appreciates most is the warm welcome she has received in Scotland. It’s an Olympic memory she’ll carry forever.  

“The reception has been fantastic,” said Rampone. “I never even thought they would take me under their wing as one of their own. Even though I’m from a different country, part of me is from Scotland, and they’ve been supporting me like a long-lost daughter. I hope the Scottish fans appreciate our team and our team spirit. We’ll always remember Glasgow fondly. It’s been pretty cool.”

Suffice it to say, William Wallace would have been honored to ride with Rampone.

Post-Game Quote Sheet: WNT vs. Switzerland – Aug. 20, 2014

U.S. WNT head coach Jill Ellis

Overall thoughts on the match:
“We knew Switzerland was going to be a good challenge. We played good, uptempo soccer. We got a lot of players in tonight. Some really good spurts and we’ve been focusing on a few things. We haven’t had much time together so overall I was very pleased with the effort and with the result.”

On areas of focus for this game:
“We worked a little bit, talking about our build up and I think we’ve got to get more out of our outside backs going forward. I think we have to get a little bit more connection centrally between our three. But we tried some different things tonight.”

On the new formation, specifically for Lauren Holiday and Megan Rapinoe:
“I wanted Holiday to control the rhythm so I moved her deeper into the midfield. We took Holiday out of the ten. I wanted to see Megan in there because she’s so good running at players. Her final pass is so good. She’s got a shot and she’s dangerous in there.”

On Crystal Dunn’s contribution on the back line and playing on the left side”
“She doesn’t usually play on the left side. I was actually really pleased. Defensively, she’s coming back in. This is her first time back in with me. I actually thought she did a solid job. She’s got to get her timing of her releasing down and how to play out a little bit better. I was pleased. Pleased with her positioning overall.”

On the depth of the WNT:
“Going into our camp for World Cup Qualifiers, we’ll have 26 solid players competing for a spot. I was pleased to see different players come in tonight and start to emerge. I’m really excited about it.”

On Christie Rampone’s role:
"She’s been phenomenal. She’s been hurt, a little banged up and her confidence was a little bit low. She has leadership, the ability to control the line and still her pace, she’s kind of a freak of nature. She’s been fantastic for us. Calms the team, good leader on and off the field. I’m really excited and hope she can make this journey with us. I believe she can.

On Abby Wambach’s return from injury:
“Abby’s coming along and that’s why I think it was so important for her to get a goal tonight. She’s worked very, very hard physically and on the technical side of her game to get up to speed fairly quickly. By our next camp, I think she’ll be 100 percent.”

On Alex Morgan’s return after recovering from injury:
“Alex has found her form. She had a great game the other night. She looks really sharp. That’s why she got the start, because she’s been playing very well and she looked good in camp.”

U.S. WNT goalkeeper Hope Solo

On not breaking the shutout record:
“For me, the record is going to come when it comes. I’m not going to chase it. It’s always disappointing to get scored on if it’s a game with a record-breaking opportunity or not. Of course I’d like to get the record so I can move on and focus on other things, but it’s not the end-all-be-all for me to have it happen here in Cary or against Mexico in the next two games, or whenever it happens.”

U.S. WNT midfielder Megan Rapinoe

On her goal in the third minute:
“I think it popped out wide to Sydney and I was just filling in the top of the box. I took a quick touch and hit it. I think it took a little bit of a deflection going in, but it was on frame at least, so count it.”

On playing in a different formation:
“It is different. It is definitely different than playing the wing. The responsibilities are just different. I have the responsibility to just find the space. It puts a little bit more onus on my to find that space.”

U.S. WNT defender Crystal Dunn

On her contribution to the team:
“I did my best to try and push up when I could. I think Switzerland did a good job of shutting that space down. I think my role on this team is to get the ball and possess it and that’s what I tried to do tonight.”

On head coach Jill Ellis’ decision to move her from right back to left back:
“I’m just happy she wanted me on the field. At the end of the day, she could tell me Hope is taking a break and I’m playing keeper and I’d be happy about that. It was great to be out there regardless of what side I’m on. “

On the back line taking shape:
“It’s going to be big. I think over the past two years we’ve been switching up a lot. I think it’s important to get a set back four. That’s what I’m competing for: to try and win a spot on this team.”

U.S. WNT midfielder Carli Lloyd

On her initial thoughts of the game:
“I thought it was a good result for us. Even though it was a short trip for us, the last couple days we’ve been working on some things. I thought we really started to find the momentum. The second half was fun. We were pinging it around, having some fun, finding some space. Overall, a good result, some good goals, some good things. Obviously there are some things we can tidy up on and work on, but this is a good start for where we want to be.”

On how the team can improve going forward:
“Just having that mindset of getting into our defensive shape a little bit quicker. A little bit more diligent with that. As long as we get back into our shape, then we can take a little bit of time. As long as we’re compact, we won’t give teams a lot of time and space to play. The Swiss were a good, quality side. They had some good attacking abilities. If you give them good time and space, they’re going to ping balls around you. Overall it was a good result.”

On the new formation with Megan Rapinoe, Lauren Holiday and Abby Wambach:
“As long as we can fine tune our shape in the middle, and we started to find that in the second half, Holiday and I started to connect with Rapinoe in there and then Press and when Abby came in. We started to really find the rhythm, find the space and picking off those pockets. We’ve got to keep building off of that.”

U.S. WNT forward Christen Press

On moving forward with a new formation:
“I was higher up the field and there were more counterattacks, so that’s good. I’m just trying to find my way on this team, find my role and see what I can do to help the team win.”

On her goal to give the U.S. a 3-1 lead:
“I think the goal was a corner kick that was headed out. I got on the second ball, and it was a chest and shoulder and volley, I think before it bounced. It was one of those where you strike through the ball, a little bit on one side and it bent into the upper part of the net.”

On having the Stanford women’s soccer team in attendance:
“It’s always great to have your alma mater there. I learned so much from Stanford and I’m glad they could be at the game.”

On the atmosphere and fans:
“I think that the environment tonight was phenomenal. When Abby walked in to the locker room she said, ‘that’s how it should feel going to play a soccer game.’ We all had the chills, with the girls outside screaming and supporting us and all the tailgaters. It’s phenomenal for us to see. It’s such a motivation. We’re so, so blessed to have this support going into our World Cup Qualifiers.”


U.S. WNT Tallies Three Second-Half Goals in 4-1 Rout of Switzerland

CARY, North Carolina (Aug. 20, 2014) – The U.S. Women’s National Team scored three second-half goals and earned a 4-1 victory against Switzerland in front of a sold-out crowd of 9,992 at WakeMed Soccer Park.

A well-rounded scoring effort featured goals from Megan Rapinoe, Carli Lloyd, Christen Press and Abby Wambach. Lloyd’s 56th-minute penalty kick served as the game-winner, and Wambach’s second-half PK pushed her USA-record goal scoring total to 168.

This was the first meeting between the two countries at the senior team level. Switzerland has already qualified for the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Canada, and the USA will prepare for FIFA Women’s World Cup Qualifying in October in the United States.

Wednesday marked the first opportunity for goalkeeper Hope Solo to set a new shutout record (currently tied with Briana Scurry with 71 clean sheets), but a Switzerland penalty kick from Ana-Maria Crnogorcevic put that milestone on hold.

The U.S. goal total could have been far greater if not for Switzerland goalkeeper Gaëlle Thalmann. She made seven first-half saves as the USA pelted the Swiss goal with eight shots – all of them on frame.

Goal Scoring Rundown:
USA – Megan Rapinoe (Sydney Leroux), 3rd minute: From midfield, Rapinoe started the U.S. attack and dished to Leroux on the left side. Leroux cut to her right and played the ball back to Rapinoe about 10 yards above the box. Rapinoe fired with her left from about 22 yards out. It took a slight deflection off Switzerland’s Rahel Kiwic and squeaked inside the right side of the frame for the early lead. USA 1, SUI 0

USA – Carli Lloyd (penalty), 56th minute: Megan Rapinoe’s cross from the left side of the box hit the hand of Switzerland’s Fabienne Humm and the USA was awarded the penalty kick. Lloyd was called in for the occasion and stepped up confidently with a low right-footed shot into the left of the frame for the two-goal cushion. Switzerland goalkeeper Gaëlle Thalmann had anticipated the shot going the other direction. USA 2, SUI 0

SUI – Ana-Maria Crnogorcevic (penalty), 70th minute: In a similar fashion leading to the USA’s penalty kick, Switzerland’s Ramona Bachmann crossed from the left side and the ball struck U.S. midfielder Megan Rapinoe’s arm. Referee Katja Koroleva pointed to the spot, and Crnogorcevic took the PK. USA goalkeeper Hope Solo, attempting to break the U.S. WNT shutout record, leaned to her right and Crnogorcevic shot in the other direction to cut the USA’s lead to one. USA 2, SUI 1

USA – Christen Press (unassisted), 77th minute: Following a Christie Rampone free kick into the box, the ball fumbled around and Switzerland’s defense weakly cleared. From 25 yards out, Press chest-trapped the short clearance and fired a right-footed shot that ricocheted off the crossbar and over the end line as goalkeeper Thalmann could only watch. USA 3, SUI 1

USA – Abby Wambach (penalty), 87th minute: On a Carli Lloyd cross from the right, Wambach drew a foul against Switzerland second-half sub Nicole Remund, who shoved the USA striker and earned the PK. Wambach took the penalty herself, a right-footed shot that clipped off of Thalmann’s gloves and into the net for her fifth goal this year and 168th of her storied career. USA 4, SUI 1 (FINAL)

Key Saves and Defensive Stops:
SUI – Gaëlle Thalmann, 20th minute: USA goalkeeper Hope Solo delivered a deep ball toward a darting Christen Press as she had a step on Switzerland’s back line. Thalmann instinctively rushed off her line and outside the box and headed the ball away before Press could converge.

SUI – Gaëlle Thalmann, 39th and 40th minutes: The busy Switzerland goalkeeper made back-to-back diving stops against the USA’s lethal attack. First, it was an Alex Morgan left-footed shot from the left side of the box that was headed toward the inside of the far right post, but Thalmann dove to her left for the save. Then, Lauren Holiday took a crack from just outside the top of the box, and again Thalmann made a diving save at the near right post.

SUI – Gaëlle Thalmann, 46th minute: In the first 12 seconds of the second half, the U.S. nearly took advantage of an errant pass in Switzerland’s half. Carli Lloyd fired from outside the box and Thalmann made a swatting right-handed save on a shot that was bound for the upper right corner.

Milestone Watch:

  • Defender and team captain Christie Rampone made her 295th appearance as she nears the 300-cap milestone. Rampone is second all-time in WNT history to Kristine Lilly in games played. Lilly had 352 caps from 1987-2010.
  • Carli Lloyd moved past Briana Scurry for 13th in career appearances with 174.
  • Hope Solo tied Michelle Akers for 17th all-time in career caps with 153.
  • Lloyd now has 51 goals for her career as she is ninth on the all-time goal scoring list.

Next on the Schedule:
The U.S. WNT will host two matches against Mexico, first on Sept. 13 at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, Utah (4:30 p.m. MT), followed by a Sept. 18 match at Sahlen’s Stadium in Rochester, New York (7 p.m. ET).
Broadcast information: Sept. 13 – TBD; Sept. 18 – ESPN2, WatchESPN
Social: Twitter (@ussoccer_wnt | @ussoccer_esp); Facebook; Instagram

Additional Notes:

  • The U.S. is now 8-2-3 this year.
  • Hope Solo moved to 118-9-18 for her career. She is second only to Briana Scurry for all-time wins (Scurry went 133-12-14 from 1994-2008).
  • Christen Press now has 13 goals in 25 international appearances.
  • The USA improved to 108-2-8 when Abby Wambach scores a goal.
  • Wambach has now scored at least five goals in a calendar year 11 times in her 14 years with the WNT.
  • U.S. head coach Jill Ellis’ starting lineup featured a defensive corps led by Solo in goal, Crystal Dunn at left back, Ali Krieger at right back and the center back duo of Becky Sauerbrunn and team captain Christie Rampone.
  • The midfield of the 4-3-3 featured Carli Lloyd, Lauren Holiday and Megan Rapinoe.
  • The USA’s starting forward trio included Sydney Leroux, Alex Morgan and Press.
  • The U.S. rolled out three substitutions to open the second half. Wambach entered for Leroux, Meghan Klingenberg replaced Krieger and Julie Johnston got the call for Sauerbrunn.
  • Heather O’Reilly replaced Morgan in the 66th minute, Morgan Brian entered for Rapinoe in the 78th minute, and Allie Long replaced Holiday in the 85th minute.
  • O’Reilly, Press and Sauerbrunn have played in all 13 games this year.
  • Krieger and Lloyd lead the USA with 12 starts apiece in 2014.
  • Ellis is now 8-0-3 as the U.S. WNT head coach.
  • Ten players on the U.S roster that trained this week in North Carolina return to National Women’s Soccer League play for the semifinal stage of the league’s second season. FC Kansas City hosts Portland Thorns FC on Saturday, Aug. 23 (1 p.m. ET, ESPN2), and Seattle Reign FC takes on the Washington Spirit on Aug. 24 (11 p.m. ET, ESPN2).

-U.S. Women’s National Team Report-

Match: U.S. Women’s National Team vs. Switzerland
Date: Aug. 20, 2014
Competition: International Friendly
Venue: WakeMed Soccer Park; Cary, North Carolina
Kickoff: 7:30 p.m. ET
Attendance: 9,992
Weather: 77 degrees, cool

Scoring Summary: 1 2 F
USA                        1 3 4
SUI                          0 1 1

USA – Megan Rapinoe (Sydney Leroux)    3rd minute
USA – Carli Lloyd (penalty)                         56
SUI – Ana-Maria Crnogorcevic (penalty)    71
USA – Christen Press (unassisted)              77
USA – Abby Wambach (penalty)                 87

Lineups:
USA: 1-Hope Solo; 11-Ali Krieger (25-Meghan Klingenberg, 46), 4-Becky Sauerbrunn (16-Julie Johnston, 46), 3-Christie Rampone (capt.), 19-Crystal Dunn; 10-Carli Lloyd, 12-Lauren Holiday (6-Allie Long, 85), 15-Megan Rapinoe (7-Morgan Brian, 78); 2-Sydney Leroux (20-Abby Wambach, 46), 13-Alex Morgan (9-Heather O’Reilly, 66), 23-Christen Press
Substitutions Not Used: 18-Alyssa Naeher
Head Coach: Jill Ellis

SUI: 1-Gaëlle Thalmann (12-Stenia Michel, 46); 5-Noëlle Maritz, 14-Rahel Kiwic (8-Sandy Maendly, 82), 15-Caroline Abbé (capt.); 7-Martina Moser (22-Vanessa Bernauerk, 68), 9-Lia Wälti, 16-Fabienne Humm (2-Nicole Remund, 68), 18-Vanessa Bürki (6-Selina Kuster, 56); 10-Ramona Bachmann, 11-Lara Dickenmann, 13-Ana-Maria Crnogorcevic (19-Eseosa Aigbogun, 74)
Substitutions Not Used: 23-Fabienne Bangerter
Head coach: Martina Voss-Tecklenburg

Stats Summary: USA / SUI
Shots: 16 / 7
Shots on Goal: 15 / 1
Saves: 0 / 10
Corner Kicks: 8 / 3
Fouls: 8 / 11
Offside: 3 / 2

Misconduct Summary:
SUI – Rahel Kiwic (caution)           19th minute
SUI – Lia Wälti (caution)               45+1
SUI – Caroline Abbé (caution)      58
USA – Carli Lloyd (caution)          85

Officials:
Referee: Katja Koroleva (USA)
Assistant Referee 1: Felisha Mariscal (USA)
Assistant Referee 2: Amanda Ross (USA)
Fourth Official: Christopher Spivey (USA)

Budweiser Woman of the Match: Lauren Holiday

Paralympian Josh McKinney to be Honored at WNT Match

Longtime U.S. Paralympian Josh McKinney will be recognized at halftime of the U.S. Women’s National Team’s game against Switzerland on Wednesday at WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary, North Carolina.

McKinney announced in June that he would retire from his impressive career on the U.S. Paralympic National Soccer Team. McKinney represented the USA for 19 years, scoring 81 goals in 124 games.

“It’s been an honor to wear the crest and play for the U.S. for 19 years,” McKinney said during the USA’s trip to Barcelona, Spain, for the 7-a-Side Championship. “I will always be grateful for U.S. Soccer, my coaches and teammates, all who are family to me.”

McKinney wore the captain’s armband starting in 2005, and he played in three Paralympic Games.

On May 6, 2012, McKinney earned his 100th cap during the USA’s match against Russia in Yevpatoriya, Ukraine.

Rodriguez, Sauerbrunn Reflect on 2004 Trip to Thailand

The very first venture into big-time international soccer for U.S. Women's National Team players Becky Sauerbrunn and Amy Rodriguez turned into a bittersweet experience.

Their participation at the 2004 FIFA Under-19 Women's World Championship was quite sweet because of its exotic location – Thailand – and the competition opened the eyes of both teenagers to the demands of one the highest levels of international soccer.

It was bitter as well, because the Americans failed in their quest to win the championship and due to the damage and loss of life the great tsunami caused a month afterwards.

The team had discovered paradise in Phuket, Thailand.

"I loved my experience in Thailand," Rodriguez said. "It was one of the most beautiful places I have ever been. Actually, one of my favorite countries ever. Very exotic, very beautiful. It was gorgeous. It was amazing."

Amy Rodriguez and Becky Sauerbrunn

The team's first two group-stage games were in Phuket. The USA stayed at a beach hotel.

"We lucked out," Sauerbrunn said. "You look out your window and you're looking straight at the ocean. The first time I walked through the lobby I was like 'Oh my God. I had never seen this.' It was beautiful. I really wasn't expecting the turnout at the games, either. The Thai people really came out. We got 10,000 people for the opening matches and for a lot of us; we had never played in front of that kind of crowd before. The country did the tournament justice."

It might have been paradise, but the tournament was work for the WNT. The U.S. won its first four matches before running into a talented German side, losing them in the semifinals, 3-1. Germany would go on to win the tournament. The USA blanked Brazil and an 18-year-old Marta in the third-place match, 3-0.

Rodriguez said not winning "was quite disappointing," which only left the players hungry for more success.

"Most definitely," she said. "My goal, my ultimate career goal at this point is to win a World Cup. I'm hoping that I have a good year this year and I can make that World Cup team and hopefully get that World Cup gold that I haven't been able to get."

The tournament turned out to be a learning experience on several levels.

"It was a gut check," Sauerbrunn said. "It was kind of an expectation that we were going to win. For a lot of girls it was the first time, like, wow, we're not used to this. This is not a good feeling. What I carried on from the U-19s is that it doesn't matter how hard you prepare, what you're doing; you show up on that day, you take care of business."

Nikki Krzysik, Becky Sauerbrunn and Amy Rodriguez

Rodriguez remembered how fast the players and teams were.

"I was shocked as a 17-year-old playing against these great players," she said. "The speed of play was much quicker. I was still in high school at the time when I was brought in with the U-19s, so I learned to play a lot of faster and how to go against tough competition."

They also learned how fragile life and paradise can be. On Dec. 26, 2004, about month after the tournament final, a tsunami wreaked havoc in 15 countries. The Phuket hotel was destroyed. More than 230,000 people were killed, including almost 5,400 in Thailand.

"I felt very fortunate to be there when I did in such beauty and such an awesome experience, but it was sad to hear that it was destroyed by a giant tsunami," Rodriguez said.

Added Sauerbrunn "It just makes you put things into perspective a little bit about soccer. For us it's a passion, but it’s not an end-all, be-all of life. We were so sad about the people that we met, the hotel staff. We were still bummed about the tournament then it was kind of like well, there way worse things that can happen to us. We should be really fortunate for everything that we had."

Amy Rodriguez, Jen Redmond and Becky Sauerbrunn

U.S. WNT Faces Switzerland for First Time on Aug. 20 at WakeMed Soccer Park

U.S. Women’s National Team vs. Switzerland
WakeMed Soccer Park; Cary, North Carolina
Aug. 20, 2014

U.S. WNT FACES SWITZERLAND FOR FIRST TIME: The U.S. Women’s National Team will face Switzerland for the first time in its history when the two teams square off on Aug. 20 at WakeMed Soccer Park in a match that sold out its 10,000 tickets on July 25. The match kicks off at 7:30 p.m. ET and will be shown on ussoccer.com. Fans can also follow on Twitter @ussoccer_wnt. The USA is 7-2-3 so far in 2014 and will be playing its third match under head coach Jill Ellis since she was officially been named to the position.

SWISS, THEN SEMIS: With just two days of training prior to the match, U.S. head coach Jill Ellis has called up just 19 players for this match and will choose 18 for the game-day roster. Eighteen of the 19 players are currently playing in the NWSL (only rising college senior Morgan Brian is not a professional) and 10 players are on clubs that will enter the 2014 National Women’s Soccer League Semifinals this coming weekend when FC Kansas City hosts Portland Thorns FC on Aug. 23 (1 p.m. ET, ESPN2)and Seattle Reign FC takes on the Washington Spirit on Aug. 24 (11 p.m. ET, ESPN2). The USA will have two more international friendly matches before CONCACAF Women’s World Cup qualifying takes place in the United States in October. The USA faces Mexico on Sept. 13 at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, Utah, and on Sept. 18 at Sahlen’s Stadium in Rochester, New York.

2014 U.S. WNT SCHEDULE:

Date

Opponent

Result/Time (ET)

U.S. Goal Scorers/TV

Venue

Jan. 31

Canada

1-0 W

Leroux

Toyota Stadium; Frisco, Texas

Feb. 8

Russia

7-0 W

Lloyd (2), Press (2), O’Reilly,

Leroux, Wambach

FAU Stadium; Boca Raton, Fla.

Feb. 13

Russia

8-0 W

Own Goal (2), Rodriguez, Wambach, Brian, Holiday, Leroux, Press

Georgia Dome; Atlanta, Ga.

March 5

Japan*

1-1 T

Leroux

Parchal, Portugal

March 7

Sweden*

0-1 L

-

Albufeira, Portugal

March 10

Denmark*

3-5 L

Press, Leroux, Rapinoe

Albufeira, Portugal

March 12

Korea DPR*

3-0 W

Wambach (2), O’Reilly

Parchal, Portugal

April 6

China PR

2-0 W

Holiday, Rapinoe

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

April 10

China PR

3-0 W

Lloyd (2), Leroux

Qualcomm Stadium; San Diego, Calif.

May 8

Canada

1-1 T

Leroux

Investors Group Field; Winnipeg, Canada

June 14

France

1-0 W

Leroux

Raymond James Stadium, Tampa, Fla.

June 19

France

2-2 T

Morgan (2)

Rentschter Field, East Hartford, Conn.

Aug. 20

Switzerland

7:30 p.m.

WakeMed Soccer Park, Cary, N.C.

Sept. 13

Mexico

6:30 p.m.

TBD

Sept. 18

Mexico

7 p.m.

Sahlen’s Stadium, Rochester, N.Y.

* Algarve Cup

#SOLO72: U.S. goalkeeper Hope Solo, who has earned 71 shutouts in her 152 caps since debuting for the USA in 2000, needs just one more clean sheet to surpass Briana Scurry’s record, set over 173 caps from 1994-2008. Eleven of Solo’s shutouts have come in world championship play – five in the FIFA Women’s World Cup and six during the Olympics. As a confirmation of her reputation as a big-game player, 42 of Solo’s career shutouts – almost 60 percent – have come in tournament competitions that include world championships, qualifying for the World Cup and Olympics and elite tournaments such as the Algarve Cup, which is held annually in Portugal.

USA TO HOST WOMEN’S WORLD CUP QUALIFYING: The 2014 CONCACAF Women’s Championship, which will qualify three teams for the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup, will be played from Oct. 15-26 in four host cities in the United States: Chicago, Kansas City, Philadelphia and Washington, D.C. The tournament features eight countries divided into two groups of four with the top two finishers in each group after round-robin play moving on to the semifinals. All the countries, including the U.S. Women’s National Team, will play one match in each of the three first-round venues. Sporting Park in Kansas City, Kansas; Toyota Park in Bridgeview, Illinois; and RFK Stadium in Washington, D.C., will each host two doubleheaders, one each for Groups A and B. PPL Park in Chester, Pennsylvania, near Philadelphia, will host the semifinal matches on Oct. 24, along with the third-place match and championship games on Oct. 26. The two finalists and the winner of the third-place match will qualify directly for the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Canada. The fourth-place team will enter a playoff with a South American country for a final berth. The Final Draw for the tournament will be held Sept. 5 in Miami.

U.S. ROSTER BREAKDOWN: The USA’s 19-player roster features two goalkeepers, six defenders, six midfielders and five forwards. Of the USA’s 19 players, just four are over 30: team captain Christie Rampone (39 years old), Abby Wambach (34), Hope Solo (33) and Carli Lloyd (32). Rampone heads into the game with 294 career caps as she is the most-capped active player in the world and second all-time in world history. The least-capped players on the roster are: Alyssa Naeher (0), Julie Johnston (2) and Allie Long (3). Naeher was brought in to replace Ashlyn Harris, who suffered a concussion in NWSL play on Aug. 2 and will need a few more days of rest and recovery.

U.S. Women’s National Team By Position – Detailed Roster
GOALKEEPERS (2): 18-Alyssa Naeher (Boston Breakers), 1-Hope Solo (Seattle Reign FC)
DEFENDERS (6): 19-Crystal Dunn (Washington Spirit), 16-Julie Johnston (Chicago Red Stars), 25-Meghan Klingenberg (Houston Dash), 11-Ali Krieger (Washington Spirit), 3-Christie Rampone (Sky Blue FC), 4-Becky Sauerbrunn (FC Kansas City)
MIDFIELDERS (6): 7-Morgan Brian (Virginia), 12-Lauren Holiday (FC Kansas City), 10-Carli Lloyd (WNY Flash), 6-Allie Long (Portland Thorns FC), 9-Heather O’Reilly (Boston Breakers), 15-Megan Rapinoe (Seattle Reign FC)
FORWARDS (5): 2-Sydney Leroux (Seattle Reign FC), 13-Alex Morgan (Portland Thorns FC), 23-Christen Press (Chicago Red Stars), 8-Amy Rodriguez (FC Kansas City), 20-Abby Wambach (WNY Flash)

WORLD RECORD AND COUNTING: U.S. forward Abby Wambach currently has 167 goals in her career after scoring twice against Korea DPR in the final match of the Algarve Cup in March. Wambach passed the legendary Mia Hamm to become the world’s all-time leading scorer on June 20, 2013, when she pounded in four goals against South Korea at Red Bull Arena. Hamm had 158 international goals from 1987-2004. The match against North Korea at the Algarve Cup marked the 107th win for the USA in a game in which Wambach has scored at least one goal (107-2-8). Wambach has scored 42 goals in her past 53 games over 2012, 2013 and 2014. She is also third all-time in assists with 65, behind only Kristine Lilly (105) and Hamm (144). Wambach missed the two matches against France in June due to a knee injury suffered in NWSL play.

MORGAN BAGS TWO IN RETURN: Alex Morgan returned to the U.S. team in June for the two matches against France and her second half appearance on June 14 in Tampa was her first time since November of 2013, an absence of almost seven months. Morgan came on in the second half against France in East Hartford, Connecticut, and scored two excellent goals to pull out the 2-2 draw, her first scores since June 2, 2012, when she scored twice against Canada in Toronto for a 3-0 U.S. victory. She now has 46 goals (10th all-time) in her 79 caps.

COMING BACK TO CARY: The U.S. Women will be playing their sixth match all-time in Cary. This is a region long known for women’s soccer excellence, and the largest crowd will be on hand Wednesday for the first sellout at WakeMed. The U.S. roster includes four players who played their college soccer at the North Carolina: defenders Meghan Klingenberg and Crystal Dunn and midfielders Allie Long and Heather O’Reilly, who scored her first career WNT goal here on Oct. 6, 2002, against Italy. The USA has won all five previous matches at WakeMed Soccer Park, four by shutout and a wild 3-2 victory against Australia in 2008 that was played in a driving rainstorm and featured a last-minute game-winner from Carli Lloyd. The U.S. Women have previously played 11 matches in North Carolina – five in Cary, two in Charlotte, three in Davidson and one in Greensboro.

SEVEN IN, 17 TO GO: With Switzerland winning European Group 3 with one match to play, and with the completion of the 2014 Asian Women’s Cup, the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup now has seven teams. Along with host Canada, Japan, Australia, China PR, Korea Republic and Thailand have qualified out of Asia. Japan defeated Australia 1-0 in the championship game while China defeated Korea 2-1 to take third. Perhaps the biggest news was the qualification of Thailand to its first Women’s World Cup. Thailand defeated host Vietnam 2-1 for fifth place and became the first team to wholly benefit from the expansion of the tournament to 24 teams. The remaining 17 countries will come from Europe (8 total: Switzerland plus 7 more, up from 4.5 + host in 2011), Africa (3, up for 2), CONCACAF (3.5 + host, up from 2.5) South America (2.5, up from 2) and Oceania (1, same as in 2011). The fourth-place finisher in CONCACAF will play the third-place finisher in South America in a two-game playoff for the final berth.

U.S. ROSTER NOTES:

  • Twenty-eight players have seen game action for the USA so far in 2014, including first-cappers Samantha Mewis, Sarah Hagan and Allie Long.
  • Lauren Holiday, the 2013 NWSL MVP, became the 30th American female player to earn 100 caps when she played against Canada on May 8.
  • Abby Wambach is the USA’s top scorer on the roster with 167 goals, and after Wambach, midfielder Carli Lloyd is the top scorer with 50 career international goals, followed by Alex Morgan (46) and Heather O’Reilly (40). Sydney Leroux is quickly climbing the charts with 31. Amy Rodriguez, who is having an excellent NWSL season with 13 goals, good for second in the league, has 27 international scores to match Shannon Boxx and Joy Fawcett for 18th on the all-time list.
  • Leroux is the USA’s leading scorer this year with seven goals. Wambach, Lloyd and Christen Press have four goals each. Lloyd also has four assists, best on the team this year, while Press also has one assist this year and has scored 12 times in her first 24 WNT games.
  • Julie Johnston gets her third consecutive call-up after a fine season with the Chicago Red Stars. She had not been with the WNT since the February matches against Russia and will be looking for her first international minutes of the year and her third cap.
  • Midfielder Allie Long earns her third call-up after getting her first cap on May 8 against Canada, coming on for Morgan Brian in the 68th minute. Long played in the 2006 FIFA Under-20 Women’s World Cup in Russia with current WNT players Tobin Heath, Kelley O’Hara, Stephanie Cox, Holiday and Rodriguez. Long started both games against France, playing 90 minutes in the first game and 60 in the second.
  • Due to NWSL games, players from Kansas City, Washington, Sky Blue, Chicago and Western New York arrived on Sunday, Aug. 17, while players from Seattle, Portland, Houston and Boston arrived on Monday, Aug. 18.
  • All nine NWSL clubs are represented on the roster.

IN THE RECORD BOOKS:

  • Hope Solo is currently tied with Briana Scurry for all-time shutouts with 71, and her next clean sheet would set a WNT record.
  • The USA’s current 84-game unbeaten streak at home (73-0-11 since Nov. 6, 2004) is a team record. The next-highest streak is 50 games (48-0-2) from Feb. 10, 1996, through April 22, 1999. The USA tied the record on May 14, 2011 (2-0 win against Japan at Columbus Crew Stadium) and broke the record with the 51st game on May 18, 2011 (another 2-0 win against Japan at WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary, North Carolina).
  • Heather O’Reilly is the ninth player to hit 200 caps in U.S. history after reaching the milestone against Korea DPR on March 12 and with 203 has now moved past Kate Markgraf (201) into eighth on the USA’s all-time list.
  • O’Reilly has moved ahead of Tiffeny Milbrett for seventh all-time with 206 caps in her career.
  • O’Reilly is the second-youngest player to hit 200 caps for the USA. Kristine Lilly was 28 years old, 9 months, 15 days when she earned cap No. 200 on May 7, 2000. O’Reilly was 29 years old, 2 months, 10 days when she earned her 200th cap.
  • O’Reilly is currently tied for sixth all-time in assists with Shannon MacMillan with 50.
  • In addition to breaking Mia Hamm’s world scoring record, Abby Wambach’s June 20, 2013, performance against the Korea Republic also made her the USA’s all-time leader in multiple-goal games with 39 for her career. She has since added another on March 12 against Korea DPR and sits at 40. She has 33 two-goal games, five hat tricks, one four-goal game and one five-goal game.
  • With her next assist or goal, Wambach will join Hamm as the only WNT players to reach 400 points in their career. Wambach has 399 points (167 goals, 65 assists) and Hamm had 460 (158 goals, 144 assists).
  • Carli Lloyd’s goal on Oct. 27 against New Zealand gave her 46 goals in her career and moved her past Julie Foudy into ninth on the all-time scoring list. Lloyd scored her first two of the year against Russia on Feb. 8 and added another two-goal game on April 10 against China PR to become the ninth player in U.S. history to score 50 or more goals. Lloyd is also the highest-scoring player in U.S. history who has played exclusively as a midfielder.
  • In the Jan. 31 match against Canada, defender Becky Sauerbrunn became the 46th player in U.S. Women’s National Team history to hit 50 caps. She now has 61, which ranks her tied for 41st all-time.
  • On April 10 against China PR, Sydney Leroux became the 47th player to hit 50 caps. She now has 53 and ranks 45th all-time.
  • Defender Christie Rampone is second all-time with 294 caps, trailing only Lilly (352 caps from 1987-2010).
  • With four more goals, Alex Morgan would become the 10th player in U.S. history to score 50 or more goals.

BY THE NUMBERS:

  • 0.83: Goals per game the USA has allowed in 2014
  • 1: USA’s FIFA ranking
  • 2.67: Goals per game the USA has scored in 2014
  • 3: Number of players who have played in all 12 games so far this year: O’Reilly, Press and Sauerbrunn
  • 4: Assists by Carli Lloyd and Christen Press in 2014, most on the team
  • 10: Number of U.S. players to score a goal in 2014
  • 12: Goals in 24 career games for U.S. forward Christen Press
  • 50: Career goals by Carli Lloyd, most ever for a WNT player who has played exclusively as a midfielder
  • 71: Career shutouts by Hope Solo, tied for the all-time WNT record with Briana Scurry
  • 99: Minutes on field per goal averaged by Abby Wambach in her career
  • 107: U.S. victories when Wambach scores a goal (107-2-8 overall)
  • 130: Minutes on field per goal averaged by Mia Hamm in her career
  • 294: Caps by Christie Rampone, second all-time to Kristine Lilly (352)

JILL ELLIS FACT FILE : After her second stint as interim head coach for the U.S. Women’s National Team, a capacity in which she coached two games this year – a win against China PR and a tie against Canada – Jill Ellis was officially named the eighth head coach of the U.S. WNT on May 16. After coaching the final seven games of 2012 when she compiled a 5-0-2 record, Ellis officially started the job with a 6-0-2 record and is now 7-0-3. Ellis has stepped away from her job as Development Director for the U.S. Women’s National Teams, a job she was appointed to in January of 2011, but will still work closely with U.S. Women’s National Team Technical Director April Heinrichs to oversee the USA’s youth teams.

  • Ellis has extensive experience in the U.S. Women’s National Team programs having served as an assistant coach for the U.S. Women’s National Team under Pia Sundhage, helping the team to a gold medal at the 2008 Olympics. She has served two stints as head coach of the U.S. Under-20 Women’s National Team, guiding the squad to the CONCACAF title in 2010 and to the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup in Germany.
  • Ellis also had two stints as the head coach of the U.S. Under-21 Women’s National Team, the second starting in the middle of 2005, after which she guided the team to the Nordic Cup in Sweden. She also coached the U-21s to the Nordic Cup title in Germany in 2000.
  • Ellis was a scout for the USA at the 2000 Olympics in Sydney, Australia, and has served as an assistant coach with the U.S. U-21s and U.S. U-16 Girls’ National Teams.
  • Ellis joined U.S. Soccer full-time after a highly successful 12-year run as the head women’s soccer coach for the UCLA Bruins. Ellis led UCLA to eight NCAA Final Fours, including seven in a row from 2003-2009, and won six straight conference titles from 2003-2008. She finished her time in Westwood with a record of 229-45-14. Ellis, who was also head coach at the University of Illinois, has an all-time collegiate coaching record of 248-63-14.
  • She was the 2000 NSCAA National Coach of the Year after leading the Bruins to the NCAA Final in just her second season as head coach.
  • Ellis arrived in Westwood after heading the University of Illinois women's soccer program for two years. In 1998, she brought the Fighting Illini to a 12-8 record and a first-ever Big Ten Tournament berth. Prior to coaching at Illinois, Ellis served as an assistant coach at the University of Virginia for one year (1996-97), at Maryland for three years (1994-96) and at North Carolina State for another three years (1988-90). As an assistant coach at North Carolina State, Ellis helped the Wolfpack secure the 1988 ACC title and an NCAA Final Four appearance.
  • A forward during her playing days at the College of William & Mary from 1984-87, Ellis was a Third-Team All-American in 1987. In 1984, Ellis helped Braddock Road in Virginia to the Under-19 club national championship.
  • Ellis grew up in Portsmouth, England, and came to the United States in 1981 at the age of 15. She also lived in Singapore for two years while her father helped to develop a national soccer program in that country. She earned her B.A. in English Literature and Composition from the College of William & Mary in 1988 and currently resides in Los Angeles. She has a USSF “A” coaching license.

IN FOCUS: SWITZERLAND
Schweizerischer Fussballverband
Founded: 1895 (Joined FIFA in 1904)
Head Coach: Martina Voss-Tecklenburg
FIFA World Ranking: 19
FIFA World Cups: 2015 will be first participation
Best FIFA World Cup Finish: None

Switzerland Women's National Team Roster By Position
GOALKEEPERS (2): 1-Thalmann Gaëlle (MSV Duisburg), 12-Senia Michel (FF USV Jena)
DEFENDERS (5): 2-Nicole Remund (FC Zürich Frauen), 5-Noëlle Maritz (VfL Wolfsburg), 6-Selina Kuster (FC Zürich Frauen), 14-Rahel Kiwic (MSV Duisburg), 15- Caroline Abbé (FC Bayern München)
MIDFIELDERS (6): 7-Martina Moser (TSG 1899 Hoffenheim), 8-Sandy Maendly (Hellas Verona), 9-Lia Wälti (FFC Turbine Potsdam), 16-Fabienne Humm (FC Zürich Frauen), 18-Vanessa Bürki (FC Bayern München), 22-Vanessa Bernauer (VfL Wolfsburg)
FORWARDS (5): 10-Ramona Bachmann (FC Rosengard), 11-Lara Dickenmann (FC Olympique Lyonnais), 13-Ana Maria Crnogorcevic (FFC Frankfurt), 19-Eseosa Aigbogun (FC Basel 1893), 23-Fabienne Bangerter (SC Freiburg)

SWITZERLAND ROSTER NOTES

  • Switzerland will be the 25th European country that the USA has faced in its history, although several of those countries no longer exist.
  • Lara Dickenmann, who plays for France power Olympic Lyon and played college soccer at Ohio State (where she was the Big Ten Conference Freshman of the Year in 2004), leads Switzerland in Women’s World Cup qualifying with 10 goals. She also played for the New Jersey Wildcats and Jersey Sky Blue during her time in college.
  • Fabienne Humm has scored eight times for Switzerland in qualifying, as has former Women’s Professional Soccer player Ramona Bachmann, who played for the Atlanta Beat. Ana Maria Crnogorčević, who plays for Frankfurt in Germany, has six goals in qualifying.
  • Switzerland’s coach is former Germany international Martina Voss-Tecklenburg who played more than 100 matches for her country and played in the 1991, 1995 and 1999 FIFA Women’s World Cups as well as the 1996 Olympics.

USA VS. SWITZERLAND:

  • While the teams have not met at the senior level, they did meet in group play at the 2010 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup in Germany, a 5-0 win for the USA in which Sydney Leroux scored a hat trick.

LAST TIME
On the field for the USA:
June 19, 2014 – Rentschler Field; East Hartford, Conn.

USA    2    Morgan 56, 85
FRA    2    Necib 27; Henry 68

Lineups:
USA: 24-Ashlyn Harris; 11-Ali Krieger, 4-Becky Sauerbrunn, 6-Whitney Engen (3-Christie Rampone, 46), 25-Meghan Klingenberg (5-Kelley O’Hara, 79); 15-Allie Long (17-Tobin Heath, 60), 10-Carli Lloyd (capt.), 12-Lauren Holiday; 9-Heather O’Reilly (13-Alex Morgan, 46), 2-Sydney Leroux (8-Amy Rodriguez, 79), 23-Christen Press
Subs Not Used: 7-Morgan Brian, 18-Nicole Barnhart
Head Coach: Jill Ellis

FRA: 16-Sarah Bouhaddi; 8-Jessica Houara, 2-Wendy Renard, 4-Laura Goerges, 24-Julie Soyer; 6-Amandine Henry, 15-Elise Bussaglia, 14-Louisa Necib, 12- Elodie Thomis; 9-Eugenie Le Sommer (10-Camille Abily, 84), 17-Gaetane Thiney (18-Marie Laure Delie, 89)
Subs Not Used: 1-Celine Deville, 3-Laure Boulleau, 5-Sabrina Delannoy, 7-Viviane Asseyi, 11-Laetitia Tonazzi, 13-Pauline Crammer, 19-Marina Makanza, 20-Anaig Butel, 21-Laetitia Phiippe, 22-Amel Hamraoui, 23-Kheria Hamraoui, 25-Ines Jurena
Head Coach: Philippe Bergeroo

Alyssa Naeher Replaces Ashlyn Harris on U.S. WNT Roster for Switzerland Match on Aug. 20

CHICAGO (Aug. 18, 2014) – Goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher has replaced Ashlyn Harris on the U.S. U.S. Women’s National Team roster that will face Switzerland on Aug. 20 in front of a sold-out crowd at WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary, North Carolina.

Harris suffered a concussion playing with the Washington Spirit on Aug. 2. While she was expected to be fully recovered in time for the Switzerland match, the U.S. Soccer and Washington Spirit medical staffs determined she will need a few more days of rest and recovery.

Naeher, who is uncapped, has made 102 saves this season for the Boston Breakers (by far the league leader) and was named the National Women’s Soccer League Player of the Week for her stellar performance in her team’s 2-0 victory against Portland Thorns FC on Aug. 10.

U.S. Women’s National Team Roster by Position
GOALKEEPERS (2): Alyssa Naeher (Boston Breakers), Hope Solo (Seattle Reign FC)
DEFENDERS (6): Crystal Dunn (Washington Spirit), Julie Johnston (Chicago Red Stars), Meghan Klingenberg (Houston Dash), Ali Krieger (Washington Spirit), Christie Rampone (Sky Blue FC), Becky Sauerbrunn (FC Kansas City)
MIDFIELDERS (6): Morgan Brian (Virginia), Lauren Holiday (FC Kansas City), Carli Lloyd (WNY Flash), Allie Long (Portland Thorns FC), Heather O’Reilly (Boston Breakers), Megan Rapinoe (Seattle Reign FC)
FORWARDS (5): Sydney Leroux (Seattle Reign FC), Alex Morgan (Portland Thorns FC), Christen Press (Chicago Red Stars), Amy Rodriguez (FC Kansas City), Abby Wambach (WNY Flash)

Jill Ellis Names 19 Players to Face Switzerland on Aug. 20 in Cary, North Carolina

CHICAGO (Aug. 12, 2014) – U.S. Women’s National Team head coach Jill Ellis has named 19 players for the meeting with Switzerland on Wednesday, Aug. 20, at WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary, North Carolina. The match, which has been sold out since July 25, will kick off at 7:30 p.m. ET and will be broadcast on ussoccer.com.

“With the very short time together, we’re just bringing in these 19 players, but we’re excited about the chance to play a team that has some talented attackers and that will be in the World Cup next summer,” said Ellis. “It’s been tremendous to watch our players compete in the NWSL this season and I’m really excited to get them together for what will be another great test for our team.”

The match will mark the first meeting between the sides at the women’s senior level, a rare occurrence for the U.S. team, which has been playing international soccer for 29 years.

Eighteen of the 19 players named to the roster played in the National Women’s Soccer League this season and at least 10 will be heading back to their clubs for semifinal playoff matches the following weekend. Midfielder Morgan Brian, a rising senior at the University of Virginia, is the only non-professional named to the roster.

The roster includes five players who will be returning to the area where they played their college soccer at the University of North Carolina in goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris, defenders Meghan Klingenberg and Crystal Dunn and midfielders Allie Long and Heather O’Reilly.

The match will likely mark the first attempt for U.S. goalkeeper Hope Solo to break the USA’s all-time shutout record. She is currently tied with former U.S. great Briana Scurry at 71 career shutouts.

Switzerland is one of six nations that have already qualified for the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup, where it will join host Canada. Switzerland has won European Group 3 with one match left to play in qualifying, taking 25 points from nine games with an 8-0-1 record ahead of Iceland and Denmark. The achievement marks the first time Switzerland has qualified for a Women’s World Cup at the senior level.

Additional Notes:

  • Jill Ellis will name 18 players among the 19 to suit up for the match.
  • Switzerland will be the 25th European country that the USA has faced in its history, although several of those countries no longer exist.
  • The game on Aug. 20 will be the sixth time the U.S. Women have played at WakeMed Soccer Park, but the first since the venue was expanded to seat 10,000 fans. It will be the first sell-out.
  • The U.S. Women have previously played 11 matches in North Carolina – five in Cary, two in Charlotte, three in Davidson and one in Greensboro.
  • The USA comes into the match with a 7-2-3 record in 2014.
  • The five U.S. strikers have scored a combined 31 goals in the NWSL this season, although Alex Morgan and Abby Wambach have missed significant parts of the season due to injury and Christen Press will have played less than half the season’s matches after returning from her time in Europe.
  • The USA’s five NWSL midfielders have actually outscored the forwards, combining for 35 goals, even though Megan Rapinoe has played just a handful of games for Seattle Reign FC.
  • Should Christie Rampone play in the match it would be her 295th cap, meaning she would have a chance to hit 300 during the 2014 CONCACAF Women’s Championship in October.

U.S. Women’s National Team Roster by Position
GOALKEEPERS (2): Ashlyn Harris (Washington Spirit), Hope Solo (Seattle Reign FC)
DEFENDERS (6): Crystal Dunn (Washington Spirit), Julie Johnston (Chicago Red Stars), Meghan Klingenberg (Houston Dash), Ali Krieger (Washington Spirit), Christie Rampone (Sky Blue FC), Becky Sauerbrunn (FC Kansas City)
MIDFIELDERS (6): Morgan Brian (Virginia), Lauren Holiday (FC Kansas City), Carli Lloyd (WNY Flash), Allie Long (Portland Thorns FC), Heather O’Reilly (Boston Breakers), Megan Rapinoe (Seattle Reign FC)
FORWARDS (5): Sydney Leroux (Seattle Reign FC), Alex Morgan (Portland Thorns), Christen Press (Chicago Red Stars), Amy Rodriguez (FC Kansas City), Abby Wambach (WNY Flash)

U.S. Women's National Team to Face Mexico on Sept. 13 in Salt Lake City

CHICAGO (Aug. 11, 2014) – The U.S. Women’s National Team will play Mexico on Sept. 13 at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, Utah, just south of Salt Lake City. The match will be the first of a two-game set that also includes the previously-announced encounter on Sept. 18 at Sahlen’s Stadium in Rochester, New York (7 p.m. ET on ESPN2 and WatchESPN).

The USA’s third visit to Rio Tinto Stadium will kick off at 4:30 p.m. MT. Fans can also follow the match on Twitter @ussoccer_wnt and @ussoccer_esp.

The two games will be the final warm-ups for both teams before the 2014 CONCACAF Women’s Championship to be held in the United States in Kansas City, Kansas; Chicago; Washington, D.C.; and Philadelphia. The tournament will qualify the top three finishers directly to the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Canada, while the fourth-place team will enter a two-game playoff against a team from South America.

Tickets for USA-Mexico in Utah go on sale to the public Friday, Aug. 15, at 10 a.m. MT through ussoccer.com, by phone at 801-727-2700 (Monday-Friday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.) and at the Rio Tinto Stadium ticket office (open Monday-Friday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.). Groups of 20 or more can obtain an order form at ussoccer.com or call 312-528-1290.

Ultimate Fan Tickets (special VIP packages that include a premium ticket, a custom-made official U.S. National Team jersey with name and number, VIP access to the field before and after the game, and other unique benefits) are also available exclusively through ussoccer.com.

As a sponsor of U.S. Soccer, Visa is pleased to offer all Visa cardholders access to an advance ticket sale for this match before the sale to the general public. This advance sale starts Thursday, Aug. 14, at 10 a.m. MT and runs until Friday, Aug. 15, at 8 a.m. at ussoccer.com. Visa will be the only payment method accepted through the Visa presale and is the preferred card of U.S. Soccer. Terms and conditions apply.

Additional Notes:

  • The matches will be the 29th and 30th for the USA all-time against Mexico.
  • Mexico will be attempting to qualify for its third Women’s World Cup after participating in 1999 and 2011.
  • The USA holds an all-time record of 26-1-1 against Mexico, with the one loss coming famously during the semifinal of the 2010 CONCACAF Women’s Championship in Cancun, Mexico, forcing the USA into a playoff with Italy for a berth to the 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup.
  • The match at Rio Tinto Stadium will elicit memories of the U.S. WNT’s own “Snow Clasico.” The first appearance for the U.S. Women at Rio Tinto was a 1-0 victory against Mexico on March 31, 2010, in a match that was played in a snowstorm on a field covered with ankle-deep snow. It was Alex Morgan’s first senior team cap. A handful of U.S. players celebrated the lone goal by making snow angels near the corner flag.
  • The USA’s next and most recent match at Rio Tinto came on June 30, 2012, with the Americans downing Canada, 2-1. A group of players celebrated the Amy Rodriguez game-winning goal with “grass angels” on a sun-splashed afternoon.

U.S. WNT to Hold Public Training Session on Tuesday, August 19, at WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary, North Carolina

CHICAGO (Aug. 1, 2014) – All U.S. Soccer fans are invited to attend the U.S. Women’s National Team public training session on Tuesday, Aug. 19, at 12 p.m. ET at WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary, North Carolina.

Admission is free and open to the public. Fans can park in VIP Parking and enter through the Northwest Gate beginning at 11:30 a.m. ET. U.S. Soccer Supporters Club members in the Star Club and above receive field level access at the public training session. If fans wish to take part in this exclusive priority, they can join the U.S. Soccer Supporters Club Star Club or upgrade their membership at ussoccer.com/supporters.

At the session, fans will get a first-hand look at how the U.S. Women’s National Team prepares for a match the day before a game.

The U.S. Women’s National Team faces Switzerland at 7:30 p.m. ET on Wednesday, Aug. 20, at WakeMed Soccer Park.

U.S. WNT Match Against Switzerland in Cary, North Carolina, is Sold Out

CHICAGO (July 25, 2014) – The U.S. Women’s National Team match against Switzerland on Wednesday, Aug. 20, at WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary, North Carolina, is sold out. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. ET and fans can watch the game live on ussoccer.com and also follow on Twitter @ussoccer_wnt and @ussoccer_esp.

The USA’s first match at WakeMed Soccer Park since the expansion to its current 10,000 capacity and the first sellout for the U.S. Women at this venue will also be the first meeting between the countries at the women’s senior level. This is a rare occurrence for the U.S. team, which has been playing international soccer for 29 years.

Switzerland is one of six nations that have already qualified for the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup where it will join host Canada. Switzerland has won European Group 3 with one match left to play in qualifying, taking 25 points from nine games with an 8-0-1 record ahead of Iceland and Denmark. The achievement marks the first time Switzerland has qualified for a Women’s World Cup at the senior level.

U.S. WNT Stadium Training in Cary, North Carolina

Here’s an up close look at the U.S. Women’s National Team training in Cary, N.C., on Aug. 19, 2014, the day before its match against Switzerland at WakeMed Soccer Park.

Abby Wambach Takes ALS Ice Bucket Challenge

U.S. WNT forward Abby Wambach completes the #alsicebucketchallenge from U.S. Soccer President Sunil Gulati. She will be donating to this worthy cause and challenges the #USMNT.

WNT vs. France: Highlights - June 19, 2014

Alex Morgan scored her first international goals of 2014 to help the U.S. earn a 2-2 draw against France.

WNT vs. France: Post-Game Reactions - June 19, 2014

Alex Morgan scored both goals in a 2-2 draw with France in East Hartford, Connecticut. The goals were her first since June of 2013. U.S. head coach Jill Ellis, defender Christie Rampone, midfielder Carli Lloyd, goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris (who earned her third cap) and Morgan react to the tie with the talented French.

Studio 90: U.S. WNT Preps for Second Leg With France

The U.S. WNT will face France on July 19 at Rentschler Field in East Hartford, Conn., hoping to build on the 1-0 victory in the first match between the teams on June 14. U.S. head coach Jill Ellis and midfielders Carli Lloyd, Heather O'Reilly and Lauren Hoilday preview the rematch against a talented French side.

8 Things About U.S. WNT Forward Sarah Hagen

She made her full Women’s National Team debut at the 2014 Algarve Cup in Portugal, but many U.S. fans don’t know much about Sarah Hagen as she’s spent the last few years playing in Germany for Bayern Munich. That will soon change as she’s returned to the USA to feature for FC Kansas City in the NWSL, and of course, you’ll now learn 8 Things you probably didn’t know about the tall striker from Appleton, Wisconsin.

Klingenberg, Hagen and Heath Set for 2014 NWSL Debuts

Three U.S. WNT players who have returned from Europe to play in the NWSL at mid-season have yet to make their league debuts. We talked to Meghan Klingenberg of the Houston Dash and Sarah Hagen of FC Kansas City, who will be playing their first career NWSL matches after the USA’s finishes its two-game set with France, and Tobin Heath of the Portland Thorns, who comes back to the northwest for her second campaign after winning the title last year.

WNT Sights and Sounds: Connecticut Calling

In this edition of WNT Sights and Sounds, the team trains in lush surrounds of the Farmington Sports Arena on a beautiful day in Connecticut. This much we know: Tobin Heath would not make a good water girl and Alex Morgan shows how shooting drills can also be fitness.

WNT vs. France: Field Level Highlights - June 14, 2014

Forward Sydney Leroux scored in her third consecutive game and the 21st minute goal proved to be the game-winner in the 1-0 win vs. France at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Fla.

WNT vs. France: Highlights - June 14, 2014

Hope Solo tied the U.S. Women’s National Team shutout record and Sydney Leroux scored her team-leading seventh goal of the year as the USA defeated France 1-0 in front of nearly 10,000 fans at Raymond James Stadium.
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