US SoccerUS Soccer
All Stories
Features
News
Videos

Defender Crystal Dunn Called in to Train with U.S. Women’s World Cup Team

CHICAGO (May 2, 2015) – U.S. midfielder Tobin Heath will likely be unavailable for the USA’s first two Send-Off Series matches, on May 10 against the Republic of Ireland and May 17 against Mexico, due to a right hamstring strain suffered during training last week.

As a result, U.S. head coach Jill Ellis has called in defender Crystal Dunn to train with the Women’s World Cup Team, but she will not miss any NWSL matches with the Washington Spirit. Dunn will return to her club for the May 9 match at Portland and the May 16 home clash with Sky Blue FC.

Dunn, who was one of the final cuts from the 23-player Women’s World Cup Team, has 13 caps for the USA. Heath, who was named to her second Women’s World Cup roster on May 14, has 90 caps.

'One Nation. One Team. 23 Stories.' Series On The USA’s 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup Team, Presented By Clorox

CHICAGO (April 29, 2015) - The U.S. Women’s National Team has three matches left before traveling to Canada for the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup in June, but as the excitement for the tournament ramps up, U.S. Soccer is proud to release its "One Nation. One Team. 23 Stories." series, presented by Clorox.

The exclusive video content featured on ussoccer.com profiles each member on the U.S. WNT roster and provides fans the opportunity to get to know the players and their stories from outside the soccer field before they cheer them on this summer in Canada during the world’s biggest sporting event for women.

Sprinkled with humor, fun and heartfelt stories, the videos give fans insight into the players’ personalities, families, motivations, and some of the challenges they’ve experienced on the different roads they’ve traveled to earn the right to represent the United States in the ultimate competition for a soccer player. The videos feature a wide range of material and topics as we delve into their 23 Stories.

The series is supported by an extensive collection of information produced by U.S. Soccer that features video, photos, narratives and biographies with each player.

Prior to departing for the World Cup in Canada, the U.S. WNT will embark on a three-game Send-Off Series across the United States in May. Tickets for the Send-Off Series matches are now on sale. The U.S. will play the Republic of Ireland on Sunday, May 10, at 11:30 a.m. PT, at Avaya Stadium in San Jose, California; Mexico on Sunday, May 17, at 6 p.m. PT, at StubHub Center in Carson, California; and Korea Republic on Saturday, May 30, at 4:30 p.m. ET, at Red Bull Arena in Harrison, New Jersey.

This summer, the U.S. Women’s National Team will face Australia, Sweden and Nigeria in Group D at the 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup. The USA opens against Australia on June 8 at Winnipeg Stadium, followed by Sweden on June 12 in Winnipeg and Nigeria on June 16 at BC Place in Vancouver.

2015 U.S. Women’s World Cup Team Roster: 
GOALKEEPERS (3): Ashlyn Harris (Washington Spirit), Alyssa Naeher (Boston Breakers), Hope Solo (Seattle Reign FC) 
DEFENDERS (8): Lori Chalupny (Chicago Red Stars), Whitney Engen (Western NY Flash),Julie Johnston (Chicago Red Stars),Meghan Klingenberg (Houston Dash),Ali Krieger (Washington Spirit),Kelley O’Hara (Sky Blue FC),Christie Rampone (Sky Blue FC), Becky Sauerbrunn (FC Kansas City) 
MIDFIELDERS (7): Shannon Boxx (Chicago Red Stars), Morgan Brian (Houston Dash),Tobin Heath (Portland Thorns FC),Lauren Holiday (FC Kansas City),Carli Lloyd (Houston Dash),Heather O’Reilly (FC Kansas City), Megan Rapinoe (Seattle Reign FC) 
FORWARDS (5): Sydney Leroux (Western NY Flash), Alex Morgan (Portland Thorns FC),Christen Press (Chicago Red Stars),Amy Rodriguez (FC Kansas City), Abby Wambach (unattached)

ONE NATION. ONE TEAM. 23 STORIES.

SHANNON BOXX
At 38, Shannon Boxx will be playing in her fourth and final Women’s World Cup. To get there, she had to overcome significant health challenges as well as return to the field after the birth of her daughter, tests she has managed with tremendous perseverance, dedication and the support of her friends, family and especially her teammates.

MORGAN BRIAN
At 22, Morgan Brian is the youngest player on the USA’s 2015 Women’s World Cup Team and has starred at the Youth National Teams level for some time, helping the USA win the 2012 FIFA Under-20 Women’s World Cup. But it wasn’t always that way. As an under-sized youth player in Georgia and Florida, she earned the nickname “Plankton” and was cut from the Olympic Development Program team. Despite hitting some obstacles along the way, with hard work, self-belief, ambitious goal-setting and inspirational guidance from a coach, she made herself into one of the best young players in the world.

LORI CHALUPNY
While Lori Chalupny may admittedly still be a bit shy, she credits her U.S. Youth National Team experience with helping her come out of her shell and find her voice. Now the St. Louis native is a college coach and a veteran player who, after five years away from the team, has a heightened appreciation for the opportunity to compete for a Women’s World Cup title.

WHITNEY ENGEN
Whitney Engen grew up in what you might call a “fun household” where her parents were always encouraging her and her brother through games and activities. Today, she knows those experiences helped mold not only her competitive nature, but also her ability to thrive in such an environment. She now feels comfortable dealing with the good days and the bad ones, whether it be while competing for and earning a spot on the USA’s Women’s World Cup Team, or catching a tossed ice cube in a cup after a full 360-degree spin.

ASHLYN HARRIS
During her childhood in Satellite Beach, Fla., Ashlyn Harris was a wild child, a grom and a skater who hit both the surf and the concrete ramps with abandon. She played sports with and against the boys and had to earn their respect. Somewhere along the way she realized that soccer might be her way out of the small town. It was, as she won the FIFA U-19 Women’s World Cup in 2002, went on to a stellar career at North Carolina, was a standout for her pro clubs and now has earned a place on her first Women’s World Cup Team. Having found her voice, she wants to use it to help others through their struggles while blazing her own path and living life freely.

TOBIN HEATH
Tobin Heath is a free spirit. It’s a distinct part of her personality that informs her style of play on the field and her life off of it. The joy she feels with the ball at her feet and her pursuit of new experiences have carried her around the country and the globe. This soccer vagabond has bounced from place to place, embracing a warm community of family and friends in between soccer trips, but she knows that one day she will settle down. Even after she does, Heath will cling to that sense of adventure and continue to seek out different situations, people and cultures that challenge her and help her grow.

LAUREN HOLIDAY
Open-heart surgery at the age of three didn’t slow down Lauren Holiday, who enjoyed a childhood replete with competition against her siblings, which led her to a first call-up for the U.S. Women’s National Team at the tender age of 17. Now 27, the central midfielder has grown up on the U.S. team and into one of the team’s most important players.

JULIE JOHNSTON
Julie Johnston has played soccer for as long as she can remember, and fueled by competition with her sister, she became one of the best young players in the country, and then the world, when she captained the USA to the 2012 FIFA Under-20 Women’s World Cup title. Still, she struggled with self-confidence trying to make the huge jump to the full National Team, and without the constant support of her friends and family, she says she might not have made it to her first Women’s World Cup.

MEGHAN KLINGENBERG
The only thing small about Meghan Klingenberg – just call her Kling -- is her height. Her personality, toughness, competitive desire and talent on the soccer field certainly loom large, so much so that the third-degree black belt in taekwondo has molded herself into one of the best attacking outside backs in the world. Who would have known that a girl from Pittsburgh, who did a demo with Nunchucks to NSYNC’s “Here We Go” in her fifth grade talent show, would one day rise to the U.S. Women’s National Team? Kling would -- that’s who.

ALI KRIEGER
Ali Krieger had a near-death experience while in college, and at the time, didn’t know if she would be able to follow her dreams of playing for the U.S. Women’s National Team, or even continue playing soccer at all. With the support of her family and teammates, and armed with a new perspective, she was able to recover and offer support to her brother who was going through his own struggles at the time. Now, the siblings are each other’s role models and confidents, lending each other perspective while helping each other achieve success and happiness.

SYDNEY LEROUX
Sydney Leroux played all sorts of sports with boys while growing up and always left everything on the field. She eventually grew out of her tomboy stage, but the aggressive style she honed as a youth is the same one fans see from her on the field today. While her road to the U.S. National Team was certainly untraditional, the daughter of a single mom gives all the credit to Sandi Leroux for providing her with the love, opportunity and support to help her follow her dreams.

CARLI LLOYD
Carli Lloyd has used a tremendous work ethic, honed on the fields of New Jersey, often times by herself, to become one of the best and most clutch midfielders in the world. She cherishes the most important games and relishes the chance to put her training into action on the grandest of stages. Lloyd embraces the pressure of her own high expectations and looks forward to having her teammates count on her in the biggest of moments.

ALEX MORGAN
Alex Morgan's childhood in Diamond Bar, Calif. involved a lot of sports. She decided only in her early teenage years to concentrate on soccer, but that focus paid off eight years later, when as the youngest player on the USA's 2011 Women's World Cup roster she played a major role off the bench. Now, as she heads to her second World Cup, Morgan is incorporating lessons she's learned from her teammates with a new set of responsibilities on the field, along with her status as a role model.

ALYSSA NAEHER
Alyssa Naeher and her twin sister were drawn to opposite ends of the soccer field: Amanda would become a high scoring forward in college while Alyssa gravitated to the goal. After an early mishap, the duo rebounded, learning to complement each other and hone each other's competitive edge. Today, each Naeher sister calls herself the other's biggest fan.

KELLEY O’HARA
Georgia native Kelley O’Hara is a southern girl at heart, and as she grew up playing all sorts of sports in Peachtree City, she never thought she would want to leave home. But her soccer travels for the USA’s youth and senior national teams, as well as a brilliant collegiate career at Stanford, have led her to live on both coasts and have taken her around the globe, opening up her eyes to a world she embraces while living life to the fullest.

HEATHER O’REILLY
Heather O'Reilly grew up with three older brothers who loved including her in their sporting exploits and watched with pride as her athleticism grew...even when she started beating their friends. Later, O'Reilly would discover that she shares something else with one of her brothers: the game face.

CHRISTEN PRESS
Christen Press’ journey took her from a highly successful but often stressful college career in California, to a folded pro league in Florida, to a fresh start in Sweden, and then to a spot as an alternate on the 2012 Olympic Team in England. Along the way she found peace with herself, and in her game, while scoring nearly a goal for every two games she has played for the U.S. Women’s National Team.

MEGAN RAPINOE
Growing up in a small town in northern California with her twin sister Rachael helped shape Megan Rapinoe into the person and player she is today. While her childhood pursuits were not good for the crawdads in the pond by her house, it positively impacted her outlook on life and strengthened a family bond that has propelled her to great success on the soccer field.

CHRISTIE RAMPONE
Through eighteen years on the U.S. Women’s National Team, defender Christie Rampone has grown from a tremendously shy dual-sport athlete out of a small New Jersey school to the long-time captain of her country. Along the way she has learned from the many players and coaches who have graced the U.S. team over the past two decades. Rampone earned the monikers of Captain America and America’s #1 Soccer Mom while raising two daughters who have grown up around the team. She feels incredibly fortunate to have had so many great role models for Rylie and Reece, who are anything but shy.

AMY RODRIGUEZ
Amy Rodriguez knew that returning to the field after having her son following the 2012 Olympics was not going to be easy. After a trade to a new club, she found new motivation, helped lead FC Kansas City to a NWSL title and earned a spot on the Women's World Cup Team. After giving birth to her son Ryan, she realized she was not nearly ready to hang up her cleats and underwent a shift in perspective. Fueled by her desire to make Ryan proud when he came of age to understand her accomplishments, Rodriguez sought to pursue her goals to the fullest. Mission accomplished.

BECKY SAUERBRUNN
At times, growing up with two older brothers wasn’t easy, but it certainly helped mold Becky Sauerbrunn into the tremendous competitor she is today. While her brothers did in fact dress her in make-shift goalie gear and shot hockey pucks at her, they also helped her learn to read, which opened up a new universe of literature and in turn nurtured her passion for knowledge. Now Sauerbrunn makes a point to learn about new cultures in all the places she’s been able to travel with the U.S. Women’s National Team while always looking to expand her education.

HOPE SOLO
From an early age, Hope Solo wanted to be a professional soccer player. She just didn’t think it would be in goal. A highly-decorated scorer as a forward in high school in Richland, Wash., she didn’t come to terms with being a goalkeeper until her later years in college. With the support of her coaches at the University of Washington, she was told she could be the best in the world. They were right. Since then, she has been dedicated to her craft, and while she says that no one can perfect the art of goalkeeping, she loves the challenge it brings, and that’s what continues to motivate her.

ABBY WAMBACH
One of the greatest competitors and winners in the history of women's soccer grew up as the youngest of seven kids in Rochester, New York. Her competitive fire was partly fueled by a loss during her senior year of high school and stoked by another crushing defeat on the biggest stage four years ago. As she pursues an elusive Women's World Cup title in her last go-around, no one realizes more than Abby Wambach that you are defined not by falling down but by how you respond when you get up.

Gallery: WNT Reps its New Nike Home Kit

Photos from the U.S. Women's National Team photo shoot in its new Nike designed home kit the players will wear at this summer's FIFA Women's World Cup in Canada. 

U.S. Women's National Team Unveils New 2015 Nike Home Kit

CHICAGO (April 22, 2015) – The U.S. Women’s National Team has unveiled a new Nike home kit the team will wear throughout the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup.

The USA kits are available in women’s, men’s, and youth sizes and will be available for sale on ussoccerstore.com starting today at 8 p.m. ET. Fans can also purchase the jerseys starting today through the Nike Soccer App (gonike.me/SoccerApp), Nike stores and Nike.com. 

U.S. Soccer to Offer Premium Hospitality for WNT Send-Off Series Matches in San Jose and Carson

CHICAGO (April 20, 2015) – U.S. Soccer invites fans to enjoy pre-game Premium Hospitality ahead of the U.S. Women’s National Team Send-Off Series matches in California this May.

Premium Hospitality will be available on Sunday, May 10, at Avaya Stadium in San Jose, and on Sunday, May 17, at StubHub Center in Carson.

Premium Hospitality is an official U.S. Soccer fundraiser and includes:

  • Premium match ticket
  • Meet and greet, autographs and photos with former Women’s National Team players
  • Access to U.S. Soccer leadership at this private event
  • Superb cuisine and complimentary bar
  • Game-day parking pass
  • Commemorative U.S. Soccer gift

U.S. Soccer is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit. Proceeds from these events will support important soccer development initiatives, including need-based scholarships for talented young players, high-performance National Team programming and coaching education.

Premium Hospitality is available for individuals and corporate groups. Fans can purchase Premium Hospitality for $400 per person or $1,500 for a group of four (4). Part of your pass is tax-deductible and will be formally recognized by U.S. Soccer after the event.

Fans already holding game tickets may purchase their hospitality pass for $300 per person.

Space is limited for these special VIP events. Contact vip@ussoccer.org to learn more and reserve your spot today. 

Ellis' Chosen 23

On the tough decision she faced selecting the 23 players:
“I think it was narrowing down the last two spots. I feel we have great balance at positions, so it was a bit of a luxury for players that can help us. I think both players I let go, both did tremendously and it was a tough decision for me.”

On her decision to select U.S. WNT midfielder Shannon Boxx:
“She’s been remarkable, from where we were in last October when she came for qualifying to now. Physically she’s been tremendous and she’s turned it around. She played 90 minutes against New Zealand in our closed-door game and did very, very well. I think the experience, the coverage in the center of the midfield, and knowing what kind of role I would use her in, I think for me it just made sense.”

On the confidence this talented field of forwards provides:
“Extremely confident, we’re so diverse. We can play behind, we can play in front and they all got tremendous assets and great experience. We’re stacked at the position; I feel really good. We have proven goal scorers, great options and it’s certainly one of our strengths.”

On what makes this team a success:
“It’s a combination of things. The pure talent on this team, we’re very talented and technical with great athleticism, so I think there’s balance there. It’s always the intangibles with the U.S. I think our mentality, our determination. There’s certainly a tremendous amount of desire in this group. I think just how we play and the tools and the depth we have in our positions. We’re going to need a lot of bodies in Canada with the heat and I think over the past six, seven months, we’ve been able to play a lot of players and give the players experience. I truly feel we’ve vetted the players and I feel confident and excited about the group we have.”

On managing Abby Wambach, whether she would be a starter or come in as a sub:
“We’ve used her in both capacities. It’s pretty formidable to bring Abby into our game. She’s a proven entity in a starting role. Having that luxury and knowing that Abby is a complete professional who always puts the team first gives me confidence that she’ll be there for us on the field, off the field, starting, coming in; she’s a proven winner and a clutch player and I won’t lose sight of that.”

Canada, Here We Come: U.S. WNT Players React on Making U.S. Women's World Cup Roster

U.S. WNT Goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher

On making the Women’s World Cup Team:

“I am incredibly excited about being named to the roster and going to my first World Cup this summer. This is such an amazing opportunity and something I have been working toward for a long time. It is always an honor to represent the U.S., and to be able to do that with my teammates at a World Cup is a blessing and an experience I will never forget. It has been quite a journey already, and I am looking forward to the next chapter.”

U.S. WNT Midfielder Carli Lloyd

On making her third Women’s World Cup roster:
“It’s definitely always an honor to make any roster. Nothing is a guarantee at this level. I’m thankful that I can be participating and we can be competing in my third World Cup. I think this World Cup is different than my previous two in the sense that obviously your first World Cup you’re getting your feet wet, second World Cup we fell short and there was some unfinished business. Now, I see myself as a role model, a leader and there’s a lot on the line. That’s what I live for, those pressure situations. I thrive under those pressure situations. I’m just ready it, I’m anxious. I’m thinking about it already at night, before I go to bed; I’m so anticipating that opening game.”

U.S. WNT Defender Meghan Klingenberg

On getting the call to make it official:
“Getting a call to go to the World Cup is the biggest honor I have ever received in my life. I cannot wait to represent my country to the best of my ability on and off the field. We’re excited to really go after it and hopefully bring the World Cup home to the U.S.”

On nerves heading into her World Cup:
“Having nerves going to the World Cup just shows how much you care about being there, representing your country and doing well. As long as you’re able to manage those in a positive way, I think it can only be helpful going into the tournament.”

U.S. WNT Midfielder Morgan Brian

On getting the call from Jill Ellis:
“I think we all knew we were going to find out on the same day, so we were a little bit nervous looking at our phones and waiting for the call. It’s a true honor to represent my country and play at a World Cup, especially at such a young age. I’m really looking forward to the experience and think it will be something I remember for the rest of my life.”

On if the news of making the roster has sunk in yet:
“I don’t think I’ve let it sink in, but at the same time I’ve dreamed about this since I was a little girl and for it to finally be official and for the dream to come true is surreal. For me it’s just been a whirlwind. I don’t think it’s going to sink in because you just think to yourself ‘I’m on the United States Women’s National Team playing in a World Cup’ and that’s insane to me. It’s cool to finally have that dream come true.”

U.S. WNT Defender Becky Sauerbrunn

On making her second Women’s World Cup roster:
“It’s an honor to represent our country at an event like the World Cup. I am thrilled to be on the roster and I hope to make our nation proud.”

U.S. WNT Midfielder Heather O’Reilly

On making her third Women’s World Cup Team:
“There are many talented players in our country and I am honored to represent the United States in our quest for the third star.”

U.S. WNT Forward Amy Rodriguez

On making her second Women’s World Cup Team:
“I’m very excited to be named to the World Cup roster. There were times that I didn’t think I would make it, so I am truly honored and grateful to represent the U.S. this summer.”

U.S. WNT Midfielder Lauren Holiday:

On making her second Women’s World Cup Team:
“I feel extremely blessed to be a part of a team as special as this one. There is no better feeling than putting on that U.S. jersey and representing your country.”

U.S. WNT Midfielder Megan Rapinoe

On being named to the Women’s World Cup roster:
“It’s so exciting. The World Cup is everything. To be able to say that in my career this will be the second one is really special. It definitely doesn’t get old by any means. I am thrilled and I can’t wait. It feels like it’s getting to the time and the energy is really rising. Everyone is really excited.”

On her big week:
“It’s really exciting. It’s all happening at one time; getting named to the World Cup roster, getting 100 caps, and getting my first-ever official hat trick in the season opener with Seattle Reign. It’s exciting. I am buzzing right now.”

U.S. WNT Goalkeeper Hope Solo

On being named to the Women’s World Cup roster:
“It’s funny, because I am a veteran now and it’s my third World Cup, but still, when the roster was set, when Jill called me up and said ‘Congratulations, you’ve made the World Cup roster,’ I still felt emotional, happy, filled with joy and proud. Anything can happen. You work for four years to make another roster and another roster and so it was just a nice dose of reality to know that I officially made the roster.”

U.S. WNT Defender Ali Krieger

On making the Women’s World Cup roster:
“Firstly, I’m very honored and privileged to represent my country as a member of this incredible group of Footballers. Second, I am extremely excited for another opportunity to win the World Cup! Having thought about our 2011 World Cup Final against Japan for the past four years, it has driven me to continue to get better every day to make sure we get back to the Final again this summer. This is something we have been working our entire lives for and therefore I feel very fortunate to be able to play on one of football’s biggest stages. We are well-prepared, motivated, determined and ready to succeed and I can’t wait!”

U.S. WNT Goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris

On making her first Women’s World Cup roster:
"I'm overwhelmed with emotion at this point. Words can't explain how honored I am to represent my country on the highest stage. I've worked my whole life for this moment. I want to thank my family, friends, and my club for the constant support and encouragement to get me where I am today. However, there is no time to celebrate or rest at this point. My dream is to win a World Cup and I will do everything in my power to bring that home to our country."

The WNT 23: Depth, Versatility and Balance

Through the first six FIFA Women’s World Cups, 61 American players saw action in the tournament while representing the USA on the grandest stage of the sport. The seventh Women’s World Cup roster in U.S. history has now been set, and we can add eight new names who are hoping to join that elite club.

The eight Women’s World Cup debutantes -- Ashlyn Harris, Alyssa Naeher, Whitney Engen, Julie Johnston, Meghan Klingenberg, Morgan Brian, Sydney Leroux and Christen Press – represent the main strengths of this roster: depth, versatility and a blend of tremendous experience with some extremely gifted young talent.

These young guns not only give U.S. head coach Jill Ellis options in the starting lineup (they have been in the first XI for 26 games combined this year) but like many of their teammates, several can contribute at multiple positions. And of course, they provide some remarkably important ingredients to any successful team; young legs and an influx of youthful energy and wonder.

Depth

This Women’s World Cup roster may be the deepest ever assembled for a U.S. team, with almost every player having shown she can start and produce in an important match. It’s no secret that depth will be a key component for the teams that find success this summer, as the tournament now requires seven games to lift the trophy.

It will take seven of the most pressure-packed and competitive matches of a player’s career over a 30-day span to win the Women’s World Cup, and it’s a big ask for any player to play every minute. Ellis and her staff will be able to navigate those difficulties with 20 field players who are all confident and ready for the challenge.

“The past six months we’ve absorbed some injuries, but that’s helped improve our depth, and I feel confident that any one of our 23 players can start a game in the World Cup if needed,” said Ellis. “We’ve been able to play challenging teams and that has allowed us to vet our younger players and get them some great experience.”

Although Hope Solo will likely play every minute in goal for the second Women’s World Cup tournament in a row, Harris has done well in her starts this year and Ellis’ stated goal of having at least two starters at every position seems to have come to fruition.

At center back, the USA has four legitimate starters, including of course captain Christie Rampone, who has played the lion’s share of her 304 caps in the middle. Becky Sauerbrunn has become the USA’s most consistent presence in the middle of the defense, bolstered by Whitney Engen and Julie Johnston, the latter of whom has recently shown her international chops with a tremendous performance in three games at the Algarve Cup. She has already captained a U.S. team to a World Cup title, leading the U-20s in 2012 in Japan.

The USA also has four outside backs ready for selection, three of whom – Meghan Klingenberg, Kelley O’Hara and Lori Chalupny – can play on both flanks. Ali Krieger, who was one of the USA’s best players at the 2011 Women’s World Cup, is solidly entrenched on the right side, but has played in the middle extensively with her club.

The USA could play any of several combinations of central midfielders with veteran Carli Lloyd, Lauren Holiday and 22-year-old Morgan Brian likely to see the most minutes. Thirty-eight-year-old Shannon Boxx makes her fourth and final World Cup team and could provide valuable minutes to lock down a match.

On the flanks, the USA’s experience is vast, with Heather O’Reilly, Tobin Heath, Megan Rapinoe, and recently, Christen Press, adding many valuable dimensions from both sides of the field.

Of course, the USA’s five forwards bring an array of strengths, all of them sure to cause trouble for opponents. The lethal finishing abilities of Abby Wambach inside the penalty box, the breakaway speed of Alex Morgan and Amy Rodriguez, the scoring guile and final third explosiveness of Christen Press and the tenacity and bravery of Sydney Leroux are all difficult for opposing defenses to deal with.

Versatility

Having depth is one thing, but having depth AND versatility among those players is another thing entirely. The combination of the two gives the coaching staff the ability to line up in different starting formations and to change tactics during the course of the game, with substitutions, with the players already on the field, or both.

As mentioned above, the USA has outside backs who can play on both sides as well as several other players who can play flank midfield or push more forward, most notably Press, who has 20 goals in her first 41 games, and wingers Heath and O’Reilly. Lloyd, who has also played a few games in a wider role, Brian and Holiday are equally comfortable in defensive and attacking roles in the midfield while the offensive chops of Boxx, long more of a defensive-minded player, have never been questioned. She has 27 international goals and 24 assists in her long career.

Ellis has often spoken of the importance of relationships on the field, and who plays where and with whom will of course be a key to the USA’s success this summer.

“We’ve had several players over the past six months who have familiarized themselves with different roles within the team,” said Ellis. “The players have a really good understanding of their role, but if needed, can play another one as well.”

Balance

Any successful team has a blend of veteran leadership, young pros with plenty of experience and wide-eyed twenty-somethings who are itching to make an impact while pushing the veterans. This U.S. roster seems to have that mix.

History has shown that older teams tend to more often win world championships, but dependence on just experience is a gamble, as a team never wants to have too many players with too many miles on their odometers. Although the U.S. Women’s World Cup roster averages a remarkable 101 caps per player (with Rampone’s 304, Wambach’s 238 and O’Reilly’s 217 skewing that figure a bit), the average age is 28 years old, seemingly a perfect number. That’s how a team can combine talent with experience and fitness, as the majority of the roster is in their prime for international players.

“With only three subs in a match, having good cover in positions in all major lines and being able to have flexibility in the lineup allows you to adjust and adapt,” said Ellis. “Having players with that versatility allows us to do that within a match. With the potential of several games in heat and all of them on turf, having a good balance at goalkeeper, defense, midfield and at forward allows us to potentially rest players or have fresh legs when we need them.”

Any successful team has players who not only know their roles and embrace their roles but also execute their roles to the overall benefit of the team. With tremendous depth, versatility and balance to the 2015 U.S. Women’s World Cup Team, the squad seems poised for another deep run in this tournament.

2015 U.S. Women’s FIFA World Cup Team: By the Numbers

By the Numbers…

2          Number of players in U.S. history to be named to Women’s World Cup rosters for non-consecutive tournaments: Brandi Chastain (1991, 1999) and Lori Chalupny (2007, 2015)

4          Number of players to have previously played in five Women’s World Cups: Kristine Lilly of the USA (1991-2007), Formiga of Brazil (1995-2011), Birgit Prinz of Germany (1995-2011) and Homare Sawa of Japan (1995-2011). Christie Rampone could join that group in Canada. Formiga and Sawa have a chance to play in their sixth tournaments this summer. Bente Nordby of Norway (1991-2007) was on five Women’s World Cup rosters but played in four tournaments.

4          Number of players on the WWC roster from the Chicago Red Stars and FC Kansas City, most of any NWSL teams.

6          Players on the roster who hail from California. Four are from New Jersey, two are from Georgia and two are from St. Louis, Mo.

7          Number of games it will take to win the 2015 Women’s World Cup, up from six in the previous six editions of the tournament.

8          U.S. players making their first Women’s World Cup roster: Ashlyn Harris, Alyssa Naeher, Whitney Engen, Julie Johnston, Meghan Klingenberg, Morgan Brian, Sydney Leroux and Christen Press.

8          Number of players on the U.S. roster who have scored in a WWC tournament.

9          Former FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup champions on the 2015 WWC roster: Harris (2002), Naeher (2008), Lori Chalupny (2002), Johnston (2012), Klingenberg (2008), Brian (2012), Heather O’Reilly (2002), Leroux (2008), Alex Morgan (2008)

9          Caps for Johnston, the least of any of the field players to make the WWC team.

11        Number of players, out of 13, who played in the 2012 Olympic gold medal game who made this WWC roster.

13        Goals by Abby Wambach in Women’s World Cup play, a U.S. record.

15        Players on the roster have played for the USA in a FIFA Women’s World Cup at the         youth level.

18        Women’s World Cup matches played by Wambach, the most on the 2015 WWC roster. Rampone has played in 17 Women’s World Cup games while Boxx has 15. Other players in double figures in Women’s World Cup matches are Carli Lloyd (11), O’Reilly (11) and Hope Solo (10).

22        Age of Brian, the youngest player on the WWC roster. Johnston is 23.

23        Number of players on Women’s World Cup rosters, up from 21 for the 2011 tournament.

24        Number of nations that will participate, for the first time, in the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup, up from 16 that participated in the previous four editions. The 1991 and 1995 Women’s World Cups featured 12 teams.

27        Total Women’s World Cup goals scored by the USA’s WWC roster.

28        Average age of the USA’s WWC roster.

32        Goals allowed by the U.S. Women in WWC play.

36        Number of matches played by the USA in the WWC (27-4-5), most by any team.

39        Age of Rampone, the oldest player on the WWC roster. Boxx is 38.

98        Goals scored by the U.S. Women in WWC play.

101      Average caps per player on the WWC roster.

122      Number of Women’s World Cup matches combined played by the WWC roster.

304      Caps for Rampone, most of the Women’s World Cup roster, most of any active player in the world, and second most in soccer history.

Gallery: WNT Reps its New Nike Home Kit

Photos from the U.S. Women's National Team photo shoot in its new Nike designed home kit the players will wear at this summer's FIFA Women's World Cup in Canada. 

The WNT 23: Depth, Versatility and Balance

Through the first six FIFA Women’s World Cups, 61 American players saw action in the tournament while representing the USA on the grandest stage of the sport. The seventh Women’s World Cup roster in U.S. history has now been set, and we can add eight new names who are hoping to join that elite club.

The eight Women’s World Cup debutantes -- Ashlyn Harris, Alyssa Naeher, Whitney Engen, Julie Johnston, Meghan Klingenberg, Morgan Brian, Sydney Leroux and Christen Press – represent the main strengths of this roster: depth, versatility and a blend of tremendous experience with some extremely gifted young talent.

These young guns not only give U.S. head coach Jill Ellis options in the starting lineup (they have been in the first XI for 26 games combined this year) but like many of their teammates, several can contribute at multiple positions. And of course, they provide some remarkably important ingredients to any successful team; young legs and an influx of youthful energy and wonder.

Depth

This Women’s World Cup roster may be the deepest ever assembled for a U.S. team, with almost every player having shown she can start and produce in an important match. It’s no secret that depth will be a key component for the teams that find success this summer, as the tournament now requires seven games to lift the trophy.

It will take seven of the most pressure-packed and competitive matches of a player’s career over a 30-day span to win the Women’s World Cup, and it’s a big ask for any player to play every minute. Ellis and her staff will be able to navigate those difficulties with 20 field players who are all confident and ready for the challenge.

“The past six months we’ve absorbed some injuries, but that’s helped improve our depth, and I feel confident that any one of our 23 players can start a game in the World Cup if needed,” said Ellis. “We’ve been able to play challenging teams and that has allowed us to vet our younger players and get them some great experience.”

Although Hope Solo will likely play every minute in goal for the second Women’s World Cup tournament in a row, Harris has done well in her starts this year and Ellis’ stated goal of having at least two starters at every position seems to have come to fruition.

At center back, the USA has four legitimate starters, including of course captain Christie Rampone, who has played the lion’s share of her 304 caps in the middle. Becky Sauerbrunn has become the USA’s most consistent presence in the middle of the defense, bolstered by Whitney Engen and Julie Johnston, the latter of whom has recently shown her international chops with a tremendous performance in three games at the Algarve Cup. She has already captained a U.S. team to a World Cup title, leading the U-20s in 2012 in Japan.

The USA also has four outside backs ready for selection, three of whom – Meghan Klingenberg, Kelley O’Hara and Lori Chalupny – can play on both flanks. Ali Krieger, who was one of the USA’s best players at the 2011 Women’s World Cup, is solidly entrenched on the right side, but has played in the middle extensively with her club.

The USA could play any of several combinations of central midfielders with veteran Carli Lloyd, Lauren Holiday and 22-year-old Morgan Brian likely to see the most minutes. Thirty-eight-year-old Shannon Boxx makes her fourth and final World Cup team and could provide valuable minutes to lock down a match.

On the flanks, the USA’s experience is vast, with Heather O’Reilly, Tobin Heath, Megan Rapinoe, and recently, Christen Press, adding many valuable dimensions from both sides of the field.

Of course, the USA’s five forwards bring an array of strengths, all of them sure to cause trouble for opponents. The lethal finishing abilities of Abby Wambach inside the penalty box, the breakaway speed of Alex Morgan and Amy Rodriguez, the scoring guile and final third explosiveness of Christen Press and the tenacity and bravery of Sydney Leroux are all difficult for opposing defenses to deal with.

Versatility

Having depth is one thing, but having depth AND versatility among those players is another thing entirely. The combination of the two gives the coaching staff the ability to line up in different starting formations and to change tactics during the course of the game, with substitutions, with the players already on the field, or both.

As mentioned above, the USA has outside backs who can play on both sides as well as several other players who can play flank midfield or push more forward, most notably Press, who has 20 goals in her first 41 games, and wingers Heath and O’Reilly. Lloyd, who has also played a few games in a wider role, Brian and Holiday are equally comfortable in defensive and attacking roles in the midfield while the offensive chops of Boxx, long more of a defensive-minded player, have never been questioned. She has 27 international goals and 24 assists in her long career.

Ellis has often spoken of the importance of relationships on the field, and who plays where and with whom will of course be a key to the USA’s success this summer.

“We’ve had several players over the past six months who have familiarized themselves with different roles within the team,” said Ellis. “The players have a really good understanding of their role, but if needed, can play another one as well.”

Balance

Any successful team has a blend of veteran leadership, young pros with plenty of experience and wide-eyed twenty-somethings who are itching to make an impact while pushing the veterans. This U.S. roster seems to have that mix.

History has shown that older teams tend to more often win world championships, but dependence on just experience is a gamble, as a team never wants to have too many players with too many miles on their odometers. Although the U.S. Women’s World Cup roster averages a remarkable 101 caps per player (with Rampone’s 304, Wambach’s 238 and O’Reilly’s 217 skewing that figure a bit), the average age is 28 years old, seemingly a perfect number. That’s how a team can combine talent with experience and fitness, as the majority of the roster is in their prime for international players.

“With only three subs in a match, having good cover in positions in all major lines and being able to have flexibility in the lineup allows you to adjust and adapt,” said Ellis. “Having players with that versatility allows us to do that within a match. With the potential of several games in heat and all of them on turf, having a good balance at goalkeeper, defense, midfield and at forward allows us to potentially rest players or have fresh legs when we need them.”

Any successful team has players who not only know their roles and embrace their roles but also execute their roles to the overall benefit of the team. With tremendous depth, versatility and balance to the 2015 U.S. Women’s World Cup Team, the squad seems poised for another deep run in this tournament.

2015 U.S. Women’s FIFA World Cup Team: By the Numbers

By the Numbers…

2          Number of players in U.S. history to be named to Women’s World Cup rosters for non-consecutive tournaments: Brandi Chastain (1991, 1999) and Lori Chalupny (2007, 2015)

4          Number of players to have previously played in five Women’s World Cups: Kristine Lilly of the USA (1991-2007), Formiga of Brazil (1995-2011), Birgit Prinz of Germany (1995-2011) and Homare Sawa of Japan (1995-2011). Christie Rampone could join that group in Canada. Formiga and Sawa have a chance to play in their sixth tournaments this summer. Bente Nordby of Norway (1991-2007) was on five Women’s World Cup rosters but played in four tournaments.

4          Number of players on the WWC roster from the Chicago Red Stars and FC Kansas City, most of any NWSL teams.

6          Players on the roster who hail from California. Four are from New Jersey, two are from Georgia and two are from St. Louis, Mo.

7          Number of games it will take to win the 2015 Women’s World Cup, up from six in the previous six editions of the tournament.

8          U.S. players making their first Women’s World Cup roster: Ashlyn Harris, Alyssa Naeher, Whitney Engen, Julie Johnston, Meghan Klingenberg, Morgan Brian, Sydney Leroux and Christen Press.

8          Number of players on the U.S. roster who have scored in a WWC tournament.

9          Former FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup champions on the 2015 WWC roster: Harris (2002), Naeher (2008), Lori Chalupny (2002), Johnston (2012), Klingenberg (2008), Brian (2012), Heather O’Reilly (2002), Leroux (2008), Alex Morgan (2008)

9          Caps for Johnston, the least of any of the field players to make the WWC team.

11        Number of players, out of 13, who played in the 2012 Olympic gold medal game who made this WWC roster.

13        Goals by Abby Wambach in Women’s World Cup play, a U.S. record.

15        Players on the roster have played for the USA in a FIFA Women’s World Cup at the         youth level.

18        Women’s World Cup matches played by Wambach, the most on the 2015 WWC roster. Rampone has played in 17 Women’s World Cup games while Boxx has 15. Other players in double figures in Women’s World Cup matches are Carli Lloyd (11), O’Reilly (11) and Hope Solo (10).

22        Age of Brian, the youngest player on the WWC roster. Johnston is 23.

23        Number of players on Women’s World Cup rosters, up from 21 for the 2011 tournament.

24        Number of nations that will participate, for the first time, in the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup, up from 16 that participated in the previous four editions. The 1991 and 1995 Women’s World Cups featured 12 teams.

27        Total Women’s World Cup goals scored by the USA’s WWC roster.

28        Average age of the USA’s WWC roster.

32        Goals allowed by the U.S. Women in WWC play.

36        Number of matches played by the USA in the WWC (27-4-5), most by any team.

39        Age of Rampone, the oldest player on the WWC roster. Boxx is 38.

98        Goals scored by the U.S. Women in WWC play.

101      Average caps per player on the WWC roster.

122      Number of Women’s World Cup matches combined played by the WWC roster.

304      Caps for Rampone, most of the Women’s World Cup roster, most of any active player in the world, and second most in soccer history.

Gallery: WNT Celebrates Big Win in St. Louis

The U.S. WNT put up a quality 4-0 win against a stubborn New Zealand side that gave the USA tough challenge until a three-goal barrage late in the second half sealed the deal for the U.S. in front of a program record 35,817 fans at Busch Stadium in St. Louis, Missouri. The Women's National Team next plays the Republic of Ireland at newly christened Avaya Stadium in San Jose on May 10 to kick off its three-game Send-Off Series lead-in to this summer's Women's World Cup in Canada. The match against Ireland begins at 11:30 a.m PT and will air live on FOX Sports 1.

Photo Gallery: WNT Celebrates 10th Algarve Cup Crown

Photos from the WNT's 2-0 win against France at the 2015 Algarve Cup. Goals by Julie Johnston (her first career international score for the USWNT) and Christen Press handed the USA its 10th Algarve Cup crown, by far the most titles of any nation. 

The WNT next plays on April 4 against New Zealand at Busch Stadium in St. Louis (TICKETS). More than 30,000 tickets have already been sold for the match that will serve as the USA's 2015 home opener ahead of this summer's FIFA Women's World Cup in Canada, which begins June 6. Fans can also follow all the action on Twitter @ussoccer_wnt@ussoccer_esp and Instagram @ussoccer_wnt

Photo Gallery: WNT Advances to Algarve Cup Title Game

Photos from the WNT's 0-0 draw with Iceland at the 2015 Algarve Cup. The U.S. now moves on to the tournament championship match against France on Wednesday. The game will be broadcast on FOX Sports 1. Fans can also follow all the action on Twitter @ussoccer_wnt@ussoccer_esp and Instagram @ussoccer_wnt

Photo Gallery: WNT in High Spirits Ahead of Iceland Match

Photos from the WNT's Sunday training session ahead of its final Group B match against Iceland at the 2015 Algarve Cup. The game against Iceland kicks off at 1:30 p.m. ET and fans can follow all the action Twitter @ussoccer_wnt, @ussoccer_esp and Instagram @ussoccer_wnt

Photo Gallery: WNT Turns It On in the Second Half to Beat Switzerland

Three second half goals propelled the USWNT past Switzerland 3-0 in Group B action at the 2015 Algarve Cup on Friday. Alex MorganAmy Rodriguez and second-half sub Abby Wambach each scored a goal in the final 45 minutes as the U.S. took control of Group B. 

The USA next faces Iceland at 1:30 p.m. ET on March 11. Due to insufficient stadium the match will not be televised but, fans can follow everything happening with the WNT during the tournament by following @ussoccer_wnt on Twitter and Instagram @ussoccer_wnt

Algarve Quote Sheet: WNT vs. Switzerland - March 6, 2015

U.S. WNT head coach Jill Ellis

On improvements from the first match day to the second:
“I thought we were patient. In the first half, Switzerland made it hard for us to play and they got numbers behind the ball, but I thought our patience and our tempo certainly picked up in the second half.  We obviously had some great finishes off a set piece and two goals in the run up play which I thought were fantastic. Our game changers came in and made a difference so I was really pleased; really pleased all-around with the performance.”

On Switzerland playing five or six players across the back:
“We have to move the ball quicker and move off the ball quicker, and that’s what we challenged them with at the halftime. We have to move and pick up the energy a little bit, and I think we did that. I think we started to move the pieces around and played more diagonal balls to stretch them a little bit and then we got it. I thought in the second half we played much better.”

On the advantage of getting all six substitutions in today:
“It’s huge. It’s part of our depth and it’s part of our build up to the World Cup. We need to know who can come in and make a difference. The players that came in were impactful and obviously we got to rest some legs which was huge at this point in the tournament.”

On Shannon Boxx making her first appearance with the WNT since April of 2013:
“I wanted someone in there to stabilize things and that can be a good role for Boxxy, to come in, tackle, win balls and stabilize us. She did that so I was really pleased for her.”

On the play of the back line, especially Meghan Klingenberg:
“Kling is a scrapper. She likes to go forward, attacking is her game but she has gotten much better defensively one-on-one. I thought the back line was solid overall with solving the players in front of them, and the runners behind them. They did a good job. To keep a clean sheet was fantastic. Hope‘s save was phenomenal. I was most pleased with the whole effort of the backline and the goalkeeper.”

U.S. WNT forward Abby Wambach

On the team being able to get on all six substitutes, including herself:
“This is a World Cup environment in terms of the structure of the tournament, so having multiple players not only come on and play but make a difference, that’s what it’s going to take to win a World Cup. Seven games is a lot and that’s obviously what we hope to accomplish and get to. But you’re going to have to play a lot of players to get there and play well. It’s not just about the best eleven playing seven straight, 90-minute games…Tonight it showed that we not only can play those starting eleven but the players that come off the bench can make an immediate impact.”

On her goal against Switzerland:
“When the ball went towards the defender I thought she was going to make  a play on it and when she didn’t,  I feel like I was in slow motion because I honestly thought she was going to touch the ball and she didn’t, she let the ball ran across her front. I kind of just ran as fast as I could, however slow that may have looked, got to the end of it, saw the goalkeeper was retreating to the back of her line and did my best to get a little bit of air under the ball, and luckily it went into the net.”

U.S. WNT forward Amy Rodriguez

On getting on the score sheet for the National Team:
“It feels good to score again. It’s been a while since I scored, so it was exciting and it was a great game to do it in too.”

On how the goal came about:
“Just a few quick little touches in front of the net. I felt like I had pressure from the ‘keeper and a defender, so tried some quick touches and tried to scoop it in. I’ve been getting a lot of comments about my quick feet so I’m just happy I was able to put it in.”

On the match overall:
“The huge thing is that we walked away with three points. We want to be in the championship of the Algarve Cup so, we have to keep working towards that and try to get another win against Iceland.”

U.S. WNT forward Alex Morgan

On the team’s patience to break down the Switzerland defense:
“[Switzerland] was playing a five-[person] backline, they were playing a slower pace than we wanted to and were trying to slow down the game. I think in the first half we played into what they wanted, but we came in and regrouped at halftime and realized we needed to step up the pace and play a little quicker. We came out ready to do that in the second half and converted our chances. I’m really happy with the way our team changed the game.”

On her goal from Lauren Holiday’s free kick:
“I just played with the offside line, the marker lost me and [Lauren] plays amazing balls in whether it’s off a free kick or in the run of play and she found me in the exact spot I was meant to be. All I needed was a tap in so, it was really all [Lauren’s] work and I was just on the end to finish it.”

U.S. WNT midfielder Shannon Boxx

On the feeling of returning to international competition after being away for almost two years:
“It felt amazing! It’s been a long road but, it’s been a fun road of trying to make it back. The support of my teammates has been amazing so I felt like when I got on the field everyone was super excited for me. The adrenaline was going! I was only in there for like 10 minutes but, I was like, ‘Whoo!’” It was fun and I’m hoping for a little bit more this trip. But the team is doing great. In the second half, the team picked it up and got some really good goals. It was a lot of fun.”

Photo Gallery: WNT Enjoys Light-Hearted Regen Session Ahead of Second Algarve Cup Match

Photos from WNT training in Portugal on Thursday morning after the team's 2-1 comeback triumph over Norway the night before. The USA next plays Switzerland on Friday at 12 p.m. ET at the 2015 Algarve Cup. The game will be broadcast on FOX Sports 1 and fans can also follow everything happening with the WNT during the tournament by following @ussoccer_wnt on Twitter and Instagram @ussoccer_wnt

Defender Crystal Dunn Called in to Train with U.S. Women’s World Cup Team

CHICAGO (May 2, 2015) – U.S. midfielder Tobin Heath will likely be unavailable for the USA’s first two Send-Off Series matches, on May 10 against the Republic of Ireland and May 17 against Mexico, due to a right hamstring strain suffered during training last week.

As a result, U.S. head coach Jill Ellis has called in defender Crystal Dunn to train with the Women’s World Cup Team, but she will not miss any NWSL matches with the Washington Spirit. Dunn will return to her club for the May 9 match at Portland and the May 16 home clash with Sky Blue FC.

Dunn, who was one of the final cuts from the 23-player Women’s World Cup Team, has 13 caps for the USA. Heath, who was named to her second Women’s World Cup roster on May 14, has 90 caps.

'One Nation. One Team. 23 Stories.' Series On The USA’s 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup Team, Presented By Clorox

CHICAGO (April 29, 2015) - The U.S. Women’s National Team has three matches left before traveling to Canada for the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup in June, but as the excitement for the tournament ramps up, U.S. Soccer is proud to release its "One Nation. One Team. 23 Stories." series, presented by Clorox.

The exclusive video content featured on ussoccer.com profiles each member on the U.S. WNT roster and provides fans the opportunity to get to know the players and their stories from outside the soccer field before they cheer them on this summer in Canada during the world’s biggest sporting event for women.

Sprinkled with humor, fun and heartfelt stories, the videos give fans insight into the players’ personalities, families, motivations, and some of the challenges they’ve experienced on the different roads they’ve traveled to earn the right to represent the United States in the ultimate competition for a soccer player. The videos feature a wide range of material and topics as we delve into their 23 Stories.

The series is supported by an extensive collection of information produced by U.S. Soccer that features video, photos, narratives and biographies with each player.

Prior to departing for the World Cup in Canada, the U.S. WNT will embark on a three-game Send-Off Series across the United States in May. Tickets for the Send-Off Series matches are now on sale. The U.S. will play the Republic of Ireland on Sunday, May 10, at 11:30 a.m. PT, at Avaya Stadium in San Jose, California; Mexico on Sunday, May 17, at 6 p.m. PT, at StubHub Center in Carson, California; and Korea Republic on Saturday, May 30, at 4:30 p.m. ET, at Red Bull Arena in Harrison, New Jersey.

This summer, the U.S. Women’s National Team will face Australia, Sweden and Nigeria in Group D at the 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup. The USA opens against Australia on June 8 at Winnipeg Stadium, followed by Sweden on June 12 in Winnipeg and Nigeria on June 16 at BC Place in Vancouver.

2015 U.S. Women’s World Cup Team Roster: 
GOALKEEPERS (3): Ashlyn Harris (Washington Spirit), Alyssa Naeher (Boston Breakers), Hope Solo (Seattle Reign FC) 
DEFENDERS (8): Lori Chalupny (Chicago Red Stars), Whitney Engen (Western NY Flash),Julie Johnston (Chicago Red Stars),Meghan Klingenberg (Houston Dash),Ali Krieger (Washington Spirit),Kelley O’Hara (Sky Blue FC),Christie Rampone (Sky Blue FC), Becky Sauerbrunn (FC Kansas City) 
MIDFIELDERS (7): Shannon Boxx (Chicago Red Stars), Morgan Brian (Houston Dash),Tobin Heath (Portland Thorns FC),Lauren Holiday (FC Kansas City),Carli Lloyd (Houston Dash),Heather O’Reilly (FC Kansas City), Megan Rapinoe (Seattle Reign FC) 
FORWARDS (5): Sydney Leroux (Western NY Flash), Alex Morgan (Portland Thorns FC),Christen Press (Chicago Red Stars),Amy Rodriguez (FC Kansas City), Abby Wambach (unattached)

ONE NATION. ONE TEAM. 23 STORIES.

SHANNON BOXX
At 38, Shannon Boxx will be playing in her fourth and final Women’s World Cup. To get there, she had to overcome significant health challenges as well as return to the field after the birth of her daughter, tests she has managed with tremendous perseverance, dedication and the support of her friends, family and especially her teammates.

MORGAN BRIAN
At 22, Morgan Brian is the youngest player on the USA’s 2015 Women’s World Cup Team and has starred at the Youth National Teams level for some time, helping the USA win the 2012 FIFA Under-20 Women’s World Cup. But it wasn’t always that way. As an under-sized youth player in Georgia and Florida, she earned the nickname “Plankton” and was cut from the Olympic Development Program team. Despite hitting some obstacles along the way, with hard work, self-belief, ambitious goal-setting and inspirational guidance from a coach, she made herself into one of the best young players in the world.

LORI CHALUPNY
While Lori Chalupny may admittedly still be a bit shy, she credits her U.S. Youth National Team experience with helping her come out of her shell and find her voice. Now the St. Louis native is a college coach and a veteran player who, after five years away from the team, has a heightened appreciation for the opportunity to compete for a Women’s World Cup title.

WHITNEY ENGEN
Whitney Engen grew up in what you might call a “fun household” where her parents were always encouraging her and her brother through games and activities. Today, she knows those experiences helped mold not only her competitive nature, but also her ability to thrive in such an environment. She now feels comfortable dealing with the good days and the bad ones, whether it be while competing for and earning a spot on the USA’s Women’s World Cup Team, or catching a tossed ice cube in a cup after a full 360-degree spin.

ASHLYN HARRIS
During her childhood in Satellite Beach, Fla., Ashlyn Harris was a wild child, a grom and a skater who hit both the surf and the concrete ramps with abandon. She played sports with and against the boys and had to earn their respect. Somewhere along the way she realized that soccer might be her way out of the small town. It was, as she won the FIFA U-19 Women’s World Cup in 2002, went on to a stellar career at North Carolina, was a standout for her pro clubs and now has earned a place on her first Women’s World Cup Team. Having found her voice, she wants to use it to help others through their struggles while blazing her own path and living life freely.

TOBIN HEATH
Tobin Heath is a free spirit. It’s a distinct part of her personality that informs her style of play on the field and her life off of it. The joy she feels with the ball at her feet and her pursuit of new experiences have carried her around the country and the globe. This soccer vagabond has bounced from place to place, embracing a warm community of family and friends in between soccer trips, but she knows that one day she will settle down. Even after she does, Heath will cling to that sense of adventure and continue to seek out different situations, people and cultures that challenge her and help her grow.

LAUREN HOLIDAY
Open-heart surgery at the age of three didn’t slow down Lauren Holiday, who enjoyed a childhood replete with competition against her siblings, which led her to a first call-up for the U.S. Women’s National Team at the tender age of 17. Now 27, the central midfielder has grown up on the U.S. team and into one of the team’s most important players.

JULIE JOHNSTON
Julie Johnston has played soccer for as long as she can remember, and fueled by competition with her sister, she became one of the best young players in the country, and then the world, when she captained the USA to the 2012 FIFA Under-20 Women’s World Cup title. Still, she struggled with self-confidence trying to make the huge jump to the full National Team, and without the constant support of her friends and family, she says she might not have made it to her first Women’s World Cup.

MEGHAN KLINGENBERG
The only thing small about Meghan Klingenberg – just call her Kling -- is her height. Her personality, toughness, competitive desire and talent on the soccer field certainly loom large, so much so that the third-degree black belt in taekwondo has molded herself into one of the best attacking outside backs in the world. Who would have known that a girl from Pittsburgh, who did a demo with Nunchucks to NSYNC’s “Here We Go” in her fifth grade talent show, would one day rise to the U.S. Women’s National Team? Kling would -- that’s who.

ALI KRIEGER
Ali Krieger had a near-death experience while in college, and at the time, didn’t know if she would be able to follow her dreams of playing for the U.S. Women’s National Team, or even continue playing soccer at all. With the support of her family and teammates, and armed with a new perspective, she was able to recover and offer support to her brother who was going through his own struggles at the time. Now, the siblings are each other’s role models and confidents, lending each other perspective while helping each other achieve success and happiness.

SYDNEY LEROUX
Sydney Leroux played all sorts of sports with boys while growing up and always left everything on the field. She eventually grew out of her tomboy stage, but the aggressive style she honed as a youth is the same one fans see from her on the field today. While her road to the U.S. National Team was certainly untraditional, the daughter of a single mom gives all the credit to Sandi Leroux for providing her with the love, opportunity and support to help her follow her dreams.

CARLI LLOYD
Carli Lloyd has used a tremendous work ethic, honed on the fields of New Jersey, often times by herself, to become one of the best and most clutch midfielders in the world. She cherishes the most important games and relishes the chance to put her training into action on the grandest of stages. Lloyd embraces the pressure of her own high expectations and looks forward to having her teammates count on her in the biggest of moments.

ALEX MORGAN
Alex Morgan's childhood in Diamond Bar, Calif. involved a lot of sports. She decided only in her early teenage years to concentrate on soccer, but that focus paid off eight years later, when as the youngest player on the USA's 2011 Women's World Cup roster she played a major role off the bench. Now, as she heads to her second World Cup, Morgan is incorporating lessons she's learned from her teammates with a new set of responsibilities on the field, along with her status as a role model.

ALYSSA NAEHER
Alyssa Naeher and her twin sister were drawn to opposite ends of the soccer field: Amanda would become a high scoring forward in college while Alyssa gravitated to the goal. After an early mishap, the duo rebounded, learning to complement each other and hone each other's competitive edge. Today, each Naeher sister calls herself the other's biggest fan.

KELLEY O’HARA
Georgia native Kelley O’Hara is a southern girl at heart, and as she grew up playing all sorts of sports in Peachtree City, she never thought she would want to leave home. But her soccer travels for the USA’s youth and senior national teams, as well as a brilliant collegiate career at Stanford, have led her to live on both coasts and have taken her around the globe, opening up her eyes to a world she embraces while living life to the fullest.

HEATHER O’REILLY
Heather O'Reilly grew up with three older brothers who loved including her in their sporting exploits and watched with pride as her athleticism grew...even when she started beating their friends. Later, O'Reilly would discover that she shares something else with one of her brothers: the game face.

CHRISTEN PRESS
Christen Press’ journey took her from a highly successful but often stressful college career in California, to a folded pro league in Florida, to a fresh start in Sweden, and then to a spot as an alternate on the 2012 Olympic Team in England. Along the way she found peace with herself, and in her game, while scoring nearly a goal for every two games she has played for the U.S. Women’s National Team.

MEGAN RAPINOE
Growing up in a small town in northern California with her twin sister Rachael helped shape Megan Rapinoe into the person and player she is today. While her childhood pursuits were not good for the crawdads in the pond by her house, it positively impacted her outlook on life and strengthened a family bond that has propelled her to great success on the soccer field.

CHRISTIE RAMPONE
Through eighteen years on the U.S. Women’s National Team, defender Christie Rampone has grown from a tremendously shy dual-sport athlete out of a small New Jersey school to the long-time captain of her country. Along the way she has learned from the many players and coaches who have graced the U.S. team over the past two decades. Rampone earned the monikers of Captain America and America’s #1 Soccer Mom while raising two daughters who have grown up around the team. She feels incredibly fortunate to have had so many great role models for Rylie and Reece, who are anything but shy.

AMY RODRIGUEZ
Amy Rodriguez knew that returning to the field after having her son following the 2012 Olympics was not going to be easy. After a trade to a new club, she found new motivation, helped lead FC Kansas City to a NWSL title and earned a spot on the Women's World Cup Team. After giving birth to her son Ryan, she realized she was not nearly ready to hang up her cleats and underwent a shift in perspective. Fueled by her desire to make Ryan proud when he came of age to understand her accomplishments, Rodriguez sought to pursue her goals to the fullest. Mission accomplished.

BECKY SAUERBRUNN
At times, growing up with two older brothers wasn’t easy, but it certainly helped mold Becky Sauerbrunn into the tremendous competitor she is today. While her brothers did in fact dress her in make-shift goalie gear and shot hockey pucks at her, they also helped her learn to read, which opened up a new universe of literature and in turn nurtured her passion for knowledge. Now Sauerbrunn makes a point to learn about new cultures in all the places she’s been able to travel with the U.S. Women’s National Team while always looking to expand her education.

HOPE SOLO
From an early age, Hope Solo wanted to be a professional soccer player. She just didn’t think it would be in goal. A highly-decorated scorer as a forward in high school in Richland, Wash., she didn’t come to terms with being a goalkeeper until her later years in college. With the support of her coaches at the University of Washington, she was told she could be the best in the world. They were right. Since then, she has been dedicated to her craft, and while she says that no one can perfect the art of goalkeeping, she loves the challenge it brings, and that’s what continues to motivate her.

ABBY WAMBACH
One of the greatest competitors and winners in the history of women's soccer grew up as the youngest of seven kids in Rochester, New York. Her competitive fire was partly fueled by a loss during her senior year of high school and stoked by another crushing defeat on the biggest stage four years ago. As she pursues an elusive Women's World Cup title in her last go-around, no one realizes more than Abby Wambach that you are defined not by falling down but by how you respond when you get up.

U.S. Women's National Team Unveils New 2015 Nike Home Kit

CHICAGO (April 22, 2015) – The U.S. Women’s National Team has unveiled a new Nike home kit the team will wear throughout the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup.

The USA kits are available in women’s, men’s, and youth sizes and will be available for sale on ussoccerstore.com starting today at 8 p.m. ET. Fans can also purchase the jerseys starting today through the Nike Soccer App (gonike.me/SoccerApp), Nike stores and Nike.com. 

U.S. Soccer to Offer Premium Hospitality for WNT Send-Off Series Matches in San Jose and Carson

CHICAGO (April 20, 2015) – U.S. Soccer invites fans to enjoy pre-game Premium Hospitality ahead of the U.S. Women’s National Team Send-Off Series matches in California this May.

Premium Hospitality will be available on Sunday, May 10, at Avaya Stadium in San Jose, and on Sunday, May 17, at StubHub Center in Carson.

Premium Hospitality is an official U.S. Soccer fundraiser and includes:

  • Premium match ticket
  • Meet and greet, autographs and photos with former Women’s National Team players
  • Access to U.S. Soccer leadership at this private event
  • Superb cuisine and complimentary bar
  • Game-day parking pass
  • Commemorative U.S. Soccer gift

U.S. Soccer is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit. Proceeds from these events will support important soccer development initiatives, including need-based scholarships for talented young players, high-performance National Team programming and coaching education.

Premium Hospitality is available for individuals and corporate groups. Fans can purchase Premium Hospitality for $400 per person or $1,500 for a group of four (4). Part of your pass is tax-deductible and will be formally recognized by U.S. Soccer after the event.

Fans already holding game tickets may purchase their hospitality pass for $300 per person.

Space is limited for these special VIP events. Contact vip@ussoccer.org to learn more and reserve your spot today. 

Ellis' Chosen 23

On the tough decision she faced selecting the 23 players:
“I think it was narrowing down the last two spots. I feel we have great balance at positions, so it was a bit of a luxury for players that can help us. I think both players I let go, both did tremendously and it was a tough decision for me.”

On her decision to select U.S. WNT midfielder Shannon Boxx:
“She’s been remarkable, from where we were in last October when she came for qualifying to now. Physically she’s been tremendous and she’s turned it around. She played 90 minutes against New Zealand in our closed-door game and did very, very well. I think the experience, the coverage in the center of the midfield, and knowing what kind of role I would use her in, I think for me it just made sense.”

On the confidence this talented field of forwards provides:
“Extremely confident, we’re so diverse. We can play behind, we can play in front and they all got tremendous assets and great experience. We’re stacked at the position; I feel really good. We have proven goal scorers, great options and it’s certainly one of our strengths.”

On what makes this team a success:
“It’s a combination of things. The pure talent on this team, we’re very talented and technical with great athleticism, so I think there’s balance there. It’s always the intangibles with the U.S. I think our mentality, our determination. There’s certainly a tremendous amount of desire in this group. I think just how we play and the tools and the depth we have in our positions. We’re going to need a lot of bodies in Canada with the heat and I think over the past six, seven months, we’ve been able to play a lot of players and give the players experience. I truly feel we’ve vetted the players and I feel confident and excited about the group we have.”

On managing Abby Wambach, whether she would be a starter or come in as a sub:
“We’ve used her in both capacities. It’s pretty formidable to bring Abby into our game. She’s a proven entity in a starting role. Having that luxury and knowing that Abby is a complete professional who always puts the team first gives me confidence that she’ll be there for us on the field, off the field, starting, coming in; she’s a proven winner and a clutch player and I won’t lose sight of that.”

Canada, Here We Come: U.S. WNT Players React on Making U.S. Women's World Cup Roster

U.S. WNT Goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher

On making the Women’s World Cup Team:

“I am incredibly excited about being named to the roster and going to my first World Cup this summer. This is such an amazing opportunity and something I have been working toward for a long time. It is always an honor to represent the U.S., and to be able to do that with my teammates at a World Cup is a blessing and an experience I will never forget. It has been quite a journey already, and I am looking forward to the next chapter.”

U.S. WNT Midfielder Carli Lloyd

On making her third Women’s World Cup roster:
“It’s definitely always an honor to make any roster. Nothing is a guarantee at this level. I’m thankful that I can be participating and we can be competing in my third World Cup. I think this World Cup is different than my previous two in the sense that obviously your first World Cup you’re getting your feet wet, second World Cup we fell short and there was some unfinished business. Now, I see myself as a role model, a leader and there’s a lot on the line. That’s what I live for, those pressure situations. I thrive under those pressure situations. I’m just ready it, I’m anxious. I’m thinking about it already at night, before I go to bed; I’m so anticipating that opening game.”

U.S. WNT Defender Meghan Klingenberg

On getting the call to make it official:
“Getting a call to go to the World Cup is the biggest honor I have ever received in my life. I cannot wait to represent my country to the best of my ability on and off the field. We’re excited to really go after it and hopefully bring the World Cup home to the U.S.”

On nerves heading into her World Cup:
“Having nerves going to the World Cup just shows how much you care about being there, representing your country and doing well. As long as you’re able to manage those in a positive way, I think it can only be helpful going into the tournament.”

U.S. WNT Midfielder Morgan Brian

On getting the call from Jill Ellis:
“I think we all knew we were going to find out on the same day, so we were a little bit nervous looking at our phones and waiting for the call. It’s a true honor to represent my country and play at a World Cup, especially at such a young age. I’m really looking forward to the experience and think it will be something I remember for the rest of my life.”

On if the news of making the roster has sunk in yet:
“I don’t think I’ve let it sink in, but at the same time I’ve dreamed about this since I was a little girl and for it to finally be official and for the dream to come true is surreal. For me it’s just been a whirlwind. I don’t think it’s going to sink in because you just think to yourself ‘I’m on the United States Women’s National Team playing in a World Cup’ and that’s insane to me. It’s cool to finally have that dream come true.”

U.S. WNT Defender Becky Sauerbrunn

On making her second Women’s World Cup roster:
“It’s an honor to represent our country at an event like the World Cup. I am thrilled to be on the roster and I hope to make our nation proud.”

U.S. WNT Midfielder Heather O’Reilly

On making her third Women’s World Cup Team:
“There are many talented players in our country and I am honored to represent the United States in our quest for the third star.”

U.S. WNT Forward Amy Rodriguez

On making her second Women’s World Cup Team:
“I’m very excited to be named to the World Cup roster. There were times that I didn’t think I would make it, so I am truly honored and grateful to represent the U.S. this summer.”

U.S. WNT Midfielder Lauren Holiday:

On making her second Women’s World Cup Team:
“I feel extremely blessed to be a part of a team as special as this one. There is no better feeling than putting on that U.S. jersey and representing your country.”

U.S. WNT Midfielder Megan Rapinoe

On being named to the Women’s World Cup roster:
“It’s so exciting. The World Cup is everything. To be able to say that in my career this will be the second one is really special. It definitely doesn’t get old by any means. I am thrilled and I can’t wait. It feels like it’s getting to the time and the energy is really rising. Everyone is really excited.”

On her big week:
“It’s really exciting. It’s all happening at one time; getting named to the World Cup roster, getting 100 caps, and getting my first-ever official hat trick in the season opener with Seattle Reign. It’s exciting. I am buzzing right now.”

U.S. WNT Goalkeeper Hope Solo

On being named to the Women’s World Cup roster:
“It’s funny, because I am a veteran now and it’s my third World Cup, but still, when the roster was set, when Jill called me up and said ‘Congratulations, you’ve made the World Cup roster,’ I still felt emotional, happy, filled with joy and proud. Anything can happen. You work for four years to make another roster and another roster and so it was just a nice dose of reality to know that I officially made the roster.”

U.S. WNT Defender Ali Krieger

On making the Women’s World Cup roster:
“Firstly, I’m very honored and privileged to represent my country as a member of this incredible group of Footballers. Second, I am extremely excited for another opportunity to win the World Cup! Having thought about our 2011 World Cup Final against Japan for the past four years, it has driven me to continue to get better every day to make sure we get back to the Final again this summer. This is something we have been working our entire lives for and therefore I feel very fortunate to be able to play on one of football’s biggest stages. We are well-prepared, motivated, determined and ready to succeed and I can’t wait!”

U.S. WNT Goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris

On making her first Women’s World Cup roster:
"I'm overwhelmed with emotion at this point. Words can't explain how honored I am to represent my country on the highest stage. I've worked my whole life for this moment. I want to thank my family, friends, and my club for the constant support and encouragement to get me where I am today. However, there is no time to celebrate or rest at this point. My dream is to win a World Cup and I will do everything in my power to bring that home to our country."

Ellis Names U.S. Roster for 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup Team

CHICAGO (April 14, 2015) – With 55 days until the USA’s opening match of the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup, U.S. Women’s National Team head coach Jill Ellis has named the 23 players who will represent the United States on women’s soccer’s grandest stage. The roster will not become official until it is submitted to FIFA on May 25, which is the deadline for all teams to submit their final squads.

U.S. captain Christie Rampone has been named to her fifth Women’s World Cup roster, tying Kristine Lilly for most World Cups for an American player, man or woman. Midfielder Shannon Boxx and forward Abby Wambach will be playing in their fourth World Cups while Carli Lloyd, Hope Solo and Heather O’Reilly make their third Women’s World Cup roster. Ellis named eight players who will be participating for the first time and nine who will be participating for the second time.

The roster, which features three goalkeepers, eight defenders, seven midfielders and five forwards, is the product of nearly 11 months of player evaluation since Ellis was named head coach in May of 2014. During that time, she has been on the bench for 23 international matches (including two as interim coach before being officially named head coach) and has seen 34 players in training camps, 29 in international matches and many more in NWSL matches. Ellis selected 14 players who were part of the 2012 Olympic gold medal-winning team in London.

“The players selected have the confidence, experience and desire to help us win a world championship,” said Ellis. “We had an excellent group to pick from and at the end of the last camp, I complemented all the players on how much they pushed each other and competed to make this selection challenging."

The Women’s World Cup roster will make up the squad for the USA’s final three matches before departing for Canada. The three-match Send-Off Series takes place in May and will start when USA faces the Republic of Ireland on Sunday, May 10, at 11:30 a.m. PT at Avaya Stadium in San Jose, California, the new home of Major League Soccer's San Jose Earthquakes. From there, the USA will travel down the coast for its second Send-Off Series match, facing Mexico on Sunday, May 17, at 6 p.m. PT at StubHub Center in Carson, California. Both California matches will be broadcast on FOX Sports 1.

The U.S. heads to the East Coast to conclude the Send-Off Series against Korea Republic on Saturday, May 30, at Red Bull Arena in Harrison, New Jersey. The match will kick off at 4:30 p.m. ET and will be broadcast on ESPN and WatchESPN. Fans can follow all the upcoming WNT matches on Twitter @ussoccer_wnt and @ussoccer_esp

This summer, the USA will face Australia, Sweden and Nigeria in Group D at the 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup. The USA opens against Australia on June 8 at Winnipeg Stadium, followed by Sweden on June 12 in Winnipeg and Nigeria on June 16 at BC Place in Vancouver.

“It’s been a thorough process of evaluation, and we had a lot of good opportunities to see the players in highly competitive situations. I feel that this group of players can accomplish our goals,” said Ellis. “We have positional depth, versatility, and players that will give us balance on every line.”

The 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup runs from June 6-July 5 and all 52 games will be shown live on FOX, FOX Sports 1, FOX Sports 2 and on tablets and mobile devices through the FOX Sports GO app and FOXSportsGO.com.

2015 United States FIFA Women’s World Cup Roster By Position: (Detailed Roster)
GOALKEEPERS (3): Ashlyn Harris* (Washington Spirit), Alyssa Naeher* (Boston Breakers), Hope Solo*** (Seattle Reign FC)
DEFENDERS (8): Lori Chalupny** (Chicago Red Stars), Whitney Engen* (Western NY Flash), Julie Johnston* (Chicago Red Stars), Meghan Klingenberg* (Houston Dash), Ali Krieger** (Washington Spirit), Kelley O’Hara** (Sky Blue FC), Christie Rampone***** (Sky Blue FC), Becky Sauerbrunn** (FC Kansas City)
MIDFIELDERS (7): Shannon Boxx**** (Chicago Red Stars), Morgan Brian* (Houston Dash), Tobin Heath** (Portland Thorns FC), Lauren Holiday** (FC Kansas City), Carli Lloyd*** (Houston Dash), Heather O’Reilly*** (FC Kansas City), Megan Rapinoe** (Seattle Reign FC)
FORWARDS (5): Sydney Leroux* (Western NY Flash), Alex Morgan** (Portland Thorns FC), Christen Press* (Chicago Red Stars), Amy Rodriguez** (FC Kansas City), Abby Wambach**** (unattached)

*        First Women’s World Cup
**       Second Women’s World Cup
***     Third Women’s World Cup
****   Fourth Women’s World Cup
*****  Fifth Women’s World Cup

Additional Notes:

  • The 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup will be the seventh time FIFA stages the event and the first to include 24 nations, up from 16 that participated in the previous four editions. The 1991 and 1995 Women’s World Cups featured 12 teams.
  • With the addition of eight teams, the format now includes an additional knockout round game (Round of 16) and it will now require seven matches to win the tournament, up from six in the previous tournaments. In part due to the additional match, Women’s World Cup rosters now have 23 players (up from 21 in 2011).
  • Christie Rampone is poised to play in her fifth Women’s World Cup tournament. Four female players have previously played in five Women’s World Cups: Kristine Lilly of the USA (1991-2007), Formiga of Brazil (1995-2011), Birgit Prinz of Germany (1995-2011) and Homare Sawa of Japan (1995-2011). Formiga and Sawa have a chance to play in their sixth tournaments this summer. Bente Nordby of Norway (1991-2007) was on five Women’s World Cup rosters but played in four tournaments.
  • Rampone is the last remaining active player from the 1999 FIFA Women’s World Cup championship team.
  • Only two men have appeared in five World Cups: Goalkeeper Antonio Carbajal of Mexico (1950-1966) and midfielder Lothar Matthäus of Germany (1982-1998). Italian goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon was named to five teams but played in four tournaments.
  • Lori Chalupny becomes the second player in U.S. history to be named to non-consecutive Women’s World Cup rosters, following Brandi Chastain (1991, 1999). Chalupny was a member of the 2007 Women’s World Cup team.
  • Of the players named to the roster, Wambach has the most experience in the Women’s World Cup, having played 18 matches while scoring 13 goals, an all-time U.S. Soccer record. Rampone has played in 17 Women’s World Cup games while Shannon Boxx has 15. Other players in double figures in Women’s World Cup matches are Carli Lloyd (11), Heather O’Reilly (11) and Hope Solo (10).
  • The players making their first Women’s World Cup roster are: Ashlyn Harris, Alyssa Naeher, Whitney Engen, Julie Johnston, Meghan Klingenberg, Morgan Brian, Sydney Leroux and Christen Press.
  • Johnston and Brian were a part of the U.S. team that won the 2012 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup in Japan.
  • Naeher, Leroux, Klingenberg, and Morgan were a part of the U.S. team that won the 2008 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup in Chile.
  • O’Reilly, Harris and Chalupny were a part of the U.S. team that won the 2002 FIFA U-19 Women’s World Cup in Canada.
  • Fifteen players on the roster have played for the USA in a FIFA Women’s World Cup at the youth level.
  • Brian is the youngest player on the team at 22. Johnston is 23. Rampone is the oldest player at 39 and will turn 40 during the tournament on June 24. Boxx is 38.
  • All nine NWSL clubs are represented on the roster with the Chicago Red Stars and FC Kansas City having four players each.
  • Rampone is the most capped player on the roster with 304 games played. Johnston is the least capped field player, making the World Cup team after having only played in nine games so far, starting four.  She has scored twice already, once each in the last two matches.
  • Back-up goalkeepers Harris (6 caps) and Naeher (1) are the least-capped players on the roster.
  • The roster averages 101 caps per player and has a combined total of 122 Women’s World Cup matches.
  • The average age of the U.S. roster is 28 years old.
  • Eight players have previously scored in a Women’s World Cup tournament, totaling 27 goals.
  • Of the 13 players who played in the 2012 Olympic gold medal game, 11 were named to this Women’s World Cup roster.
  • Six players on the roster are from California, while four are from New Jersey, two from Georgia, and two are from St. Louis, Mo.

Good to be Home: Ellis, Chalupny and Wambach Discuss USA's 4-0 Win Over New Zealand in St. Louis

U.S. WNT head coach Jill Ellis

On the match:
“I was pleased. I thought there were a lot of positives, not only scoring goals but also creating chances with players coming off the bench who helped us. We talked about working on keeping clean sheets so I’m pleased with that. Obviously, our back line was tremendous on both sides of the ball. I’m pleased because New Zealand is a good team. They like to pressure us. We got a good result against a World Cup team.”

On the play of defender Julie Johnston:
“Defense is her prime responsibility and I thought, for a newer player, dealing with New Zealand in front of probably the biggest crowd she’s played in front of, she handled everything well and ran with it.”

On defenders scoring three goals:
“I’m thrilled because that’s a massive add-on (to the attack). We talk about scoring in transition, on set pieces and scoring in the run-of-play. Those set piece goals are good takeaways. Our defenders are good in the air so that should be one of their strengths.”

U.S. WNT defender Lori Chalupny

On scoring a goal in front of her hometown:
“Just to be here playing in Busch Stadium and in St. Louis in front of friends and family is enough. Then, to score a goal is pretty amazing. I feel like I’m living in a dream a little bit. Absolute joy.”

On her thoughts when she found out the WNT was going to play in St. Louis:
“To hear that we were going to play in St. Louis was great, but then to hear that it was going to be at Busch and that they were going to transform this stadium was even better. I am a huge Cardinals fan so to play in this stadium is amazing. It’s really exciting.”

On three defenders scoring for the USA:
“We have some good defenders who can push into the attack, but that’s part of the way we play, especially outside backs but also central defenders. We’re not only about defending but adding into the attack as well.”

On playing in front of the 35, 817 fans:
“It was incredible. The atmosphere was awesome. We looked around as a team and just feel so grateful to play in front of crowds like these.”

U.S. WNT forward Abby Wambach

On the atmosphere at the match:
“Some of these players haven’t really experienced it, and even though we’ll be in Canada for the World Cup, we know our fans will be there. What better way to do this than in St. Louis? And then Chalups getting the goal in her hometown… I’m proud of our team, proud of our effort. We’re finding our stride and we want to be peaking by June.”

WNT Cruises to 4-0 Win against New Zealand before Record-Setting Crowd in St. Louis

ST. LOUIS (April 4, 2015)- In front of a record crowd of 35,817 fans that packed Busch Stadium, the U.S. Women’s National Team cruised to a 4-0 victory against New Zealand in its first match on home soil this year.

After Meghan Klingenberg put the U.S. up 1-0 early in the first half, St. Louis native Lori Chalupny, Julie Johnston and Morgan Brian all scored within a five-minute span late in the second half to put the game away for the USA. The win pushed the WNT’s all-time record against New Zealand to 11-1-1.

The crowd at Busch Stadium was the largest to watch a stand-alone Women’s National Team home friendly. In the history of the WNT program, only two other matches drew bigger attendances for home friendlies; however, both were part of double-header events.

Goal Scoring Rundown:
USA- Meghan Klingenberg, 14th minute:
New Zealand cleared an Ali Krieger cross, but only to the top of the penalty box where it bounced to Klingenberg who ran onto it and blasted a first-time volley into the upper left corner. USA 1, NZL 0 (SEE GOAL)

USA- Lori Chalupny (Megan Rapinoe), 76th minute: After a short corner, Megan Rapinoe took the ball in from the left and laid a pass back to Lori Chalupny who curled a shot from 16 yards out into the far right corner of the New Zealand net. USA 2, NZL 0 (SEE GOAL)

USA- Julie Johnston (Lauren Holiday), 78th minute: From a free kick in the left channel, Lauren Holiday looped in a ball that Johnston met with a powerful header from the center of the New Zealand penalty area. Her shot left New Zealand goalkeeper Erin Naylor no chance as it caromed in off the cross bar for her second-career goal. USA 3, NZL 0 (SEE GOAL)

USA- Morgan Brian (Sydney Leroux), 81st minute: Morgan Brian helped create a New Zealand turnover in midfield. The ball ended up on the foot of Sydney Leroux whose well-weighted through ball found Brian, who had continued her run, and she finished into the lower-left corner to provide the final margin of victory. USA 4, NZL 0 FINAL

Key Saves and Defensive Stops:
NZL- Erin Nayler, 14th minute (save):
Amy Rodriguez received a throw-in and took a half-turn before firing off a quick volley from just inside the box. Nayler jumped and pushed the shot up and off the cross bar.

NZL- Erin Nayler, 16th minute (save): Christen Press received a pass from the left and cut past a defender to the middle where she blasted a shot that Nayler jumped for and just reached, tipping it over the cross bar for her second save of the match.

NZL- Erin Nayler, 61st minute (save): Megan Rapinoe took the ball of a pass and dribbled it from the left into the center ripped a shot that forced Naylor into a sprawling save.

Milestone Watch:

  • The attendance of 35,817 was the:
    • All-time largest crowd for a stand-alone Women’s National Team friendly match on U.S. soil,
    • Third largest crowd for a Women’s national team friendly match at home*
    • 12th largest crowd for any Women’s National Team match at home^
  • Megan Rapinoe earned her 100th cap. The Northern Californian will be honored for the achievement on May 10th in San Jose. She is the 31st American female player to reach 100 caps.
  • Meghan Klingenberg scored her second career goal on her long-range blast. Her first goal was a similar long-range effort that came against Haiti on October 8, during Women’s World Cup qualifying tournament last year.
  • Hope Solo earned her 167th cap and made her 161st-career start (the most for a WNT goalkeeper, surpassing Briana Scurry’s 159 starts [from 1994-2008]). Solo’s 167 caps move her into 10th place on the all-time list and passing Brandi Chastain (160 games from 1988-2004) 

*The two higher-attended matches were double-headers – one with the Men’s National Team, while the other was part of the Nike U.S. Women’s Cup in 1999.
^Includes all matches, including FIFA World Cup matches and Olympic matches played in the United States

Next on the Schedule:
The U.S. WNT faces Ireland on May 10 in San Jose at 11:30 a.m. PT
Broadcast information: FOX Sports 1
Social: Twitter @ussoccer_wnt; FacebookInstagram

Additional Notes:

  • Hope Solo extended her U.S. record for shutouts to 82.
  • Lori Chalupny’s last goal for the USA came against the Republic of Ireland on Sept. 20, 2008.
  • Julie Johnston’s goal was her second of 2015 and the second of her career. She scored her first goal at this year’s Algarve Cup against France in the championship game. She also scored that goal with a header from a set piece.
  • It was a homecoming for the St. Louis natives, Becky Sauerbrunn, who made the start at centerback and Lori Chalupny, who subbed into the match in the 57th minute and scored in the 75th.
  • In its last six games the U.S. has surrendered just one goal and has scored 12.
  • The four goals were the most scored by the U.S. WNT in a single game this year.
  • Nine different players have scored for the USA in 2015 (Alex Morgan, Abby Wambach, Amy Rodriguez, Christen Press, Julie Johnston, Meghan Klingenberg, Morgan Brian, Lori Chalupny and Carli Lloyd)
  • The USA now has a 12-game unbeaten streak against New Zealand and has posted eight shutouts with a 47-4 scoring advantage during that stretch. 

- U.S. Women’s National Team Match Report - 

Match: U.S. Women’s National Team vs. New Zealand
Date: April 4, 2015
Competition: International Friendly
Venue: Busch Stadium; St. Louis, Mo.
Kickoff: 3 p.m. PT
Attendance: 35,817
Weather: 59 degrees; Sunny 

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

USA – Meghan Klingenberg                          14th minute
USA – Lori Chalupny (Megan Rapinoe)        76
USA – Julie Johnston (Lauren Holiday)         78
USA – Morgan Brian (Sydney Leroux)         81 

Lineups:
USA: 1-Hope Solo; 11-Ali Krieger (5-Kelley O’Hara, 83), 4-Becky Sauerbrunn, 26-Julie Johnston, 25-Meghan Klingenberg (16-Lori Chalupny, 57); 23-Christen Press (17-Tobin Heath, 56), 12-Lauren Holiday, 10-Carli Lloyd (capt.), 15-Megan Rapinoe (14-Morgan Brian, 79); 8-Amy Rodriguez (2-Sydney Leroux, 57), 13-Alex Morgan (20-Abby Wambach, 73)
Subs Not Used: 6-Whitney Engen, 9-Heather O’Reilly, 24-Ashlyn Harris  
Head coach: Jill Ellis

NZL: 1-Erin Nayler; 5-Abby Erceg (capt.), 6-Rebekah Stott, 4-Katie Duncan, 2-Ria Percival; 7-Ali Riley, 16-Annalie Longo, 14-Katie Bowen (11-Kirsty Yallop, 85); 9-Amber Hearn, 10-Sarah Gregorius (24-Jasmine Pereira, 65), 17-Hannah Wilkinson (13-Rosie White, 74)
Subs Not Used: 21-Rebecca Rolls, 3-Anna Green, 15-Meikayla Moore, 18-Catherine Bott, 12-Betsy Hassett, 26-Daisy Cleverley
Head coach: Tony Readings 

Stats Summary: USA / NZL
Shots: 18 / 2
Shots on Goal: 11 / 0
Saves: 0 / 6
Corner Kicks: 6 / 2
Fouls: 6 / 11
Offside 6 / 2 

Misconduct Summary:
None 

Officials:
Referee: Carol Anne Chenard (CAN)                      
Assistant Referee 1: Marie-Josée Charbonneau (CAN)                                            
Assistant Referee 2: Suzanne Morisset (CAN)                                
4th Official: Marie-Soleil Beaudoin (CAN) 

Budweiser Woman of the Match: Lori Chalupny

WNT Ramps Up Final Run Toward World Cup against New Zealand

The U.S. Women’s National Team will begin a run of four domestic matches leading into the Women’s World Cup when it faces New Zealand on April 4 at Busch Stadium in St. Louis. The match has sold more than 32,000 tickets for what will be the U.S. WNT’s first game in St. Louis since 2007 and first appearance at Busch Stadium. The match will be broadcast on FOX Sports 1 at 3 p.m. CT. Fans can follow all the action on Twitter @ussoccer_wnt and @ussoccer_esp, or Instagram.

The ticket amount sold so far puts the match within striking distance of the largest stand-alone crowd for a U.S. WNT home friendly in the history of the program. The current record is the 36,405 that turned out at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri, to watch the USA defeat Finland 6-0 on Oct. 7, 1999, following the USA’s historic run to the 1999 Women’s World Cup title. The U.S. Women are coming off a victorious turn at the 2015 Algarve Cup in Portugal, where the Americans triumphed 2-0 against France in the championship game to win its 10th title. The USA comes into the match against New Zealand – its first domestic match of the year – with a 4-1-1 record so far in 2015.

BACK TO ST. LOUIS WITH A SPLASH: The U.S. Women’s National Team returns to St. Louis for the first time in seven and a half years (10/13/07 vs. Mexico; 5-1 win in front of 10,861) and U.S. Soccer has partnered with Major League Baseball’s St. Louis Cardinals for this event. Over 32,000 tickets have been sold, putting the match within striking distance of the largest stand-alone crowd for a U.S. WNT home friendly in the history of the program. The current record is the 36,405 that turned out at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri, to watch the USA defeat Finland 6-0 on Oct. 7, 1999, following the historic run to the 1999 Women’s World Cup title.

Date                Opponent       Result                         Location                     Attendance
7/10/1999        China PR*       0-0 T (5-4 PK)           Pasadena, Calif.          90,125
10/7/1999        Finland            6-0 W                         Kansas City, Mo.        36,405
10/10/1999      Brazil              4-2 W                          Louisville, Ky.            35,211
9/21/2003        Sweden*         3-1 W                          Washington, D.C.       34,144
4/4/2015          New Zealand                                      St. Louis, Mo.             32,000+
*FIFA Women’s World Cup match

U.S. Soccer is looking to build on the successful soccer events Busch Stadium has hosted in recent years:

  • Man City 4-3 Chelsea, 5/23/13 in front of 48,263 (sellout)
  • Argentina 2-0 Bosnia, 11/18/13 in front of 30,397 (Messi didn’t play; 95% supporting Bosnia)

Games at Edward Jones Dome:

  • Real Madrid 3-0 Inter Milan, 8/10/13 in front of  54,184
  • Bosnia 2-1 Ivory Coast, 5/30/14 in front of 14,101

WELCOME HOME: There are two St. Louis natives on the roster who could get to play in front of their hometown crowd: defender Becky Sauerbrunn, who was an All-American at Ladue High School and the 2003 Missouri Player of the Year, and defender Lori Chalupny, who was an All-American at Nerinx Hall High School.

U.S. Women’s National Team Roster By Position:
GOALKEEPERS (3): Ashlyn Harris (Washington Spirit), Alyssa Naeher (Boston Breakers), Hope Solo (Seattle Reign FC)
DEFENDERS (10): Lori Chalupny (Chicago Red Stars), Crystal Dunn (Washington Spirit), Whitney Engen (Western NY Flash), Julie Johnston (Chicago Red Stars), Meghan Klingenberg (Houston Dash), Ali Krieger (Washington Spirit), Kelley O’Hara (Sky Blue FC), Christie Rampone (Sky Blue FC), Becky Sauerbrunn (FC Kansas City), Rachel Van Hollebeke (Portland Thorns FC)
MIDFIELDERS (7): Shannon Boxx (Chicago Red Stars), Morgan Brian (Houston Dash), Tobin Heath (Portland Thorns FC), Lauren Holiday (FC Kansas City), Carli Lloyd (Houston Dash), Heather O’Reilly (FC Kansas City), Megan Rapinoe (Seattle Reign FC)
FORWARDS (5): Sydney Leroux (Western NY Flash), Alex Morgan (Portland Thorns FC), Christen Press (Chicago Red Stars), Amy Rodriguez (FC Kansas City), Abby Wambach (unattached)

U.S. ROSTER NOTES:

  • U.S. head coach Jill Ellis called up the same 25 players for this event as she did for the 2015 Algarve Cup. She will choose 18 of those players to suit up against New Zealand.
  • U.S. midfielder Megan Rapinoe is sitting on 99 caps and if she plays against NZL will become the 31st American female player to reach the century mark.
  • Lori Chalupny is on 98 caps and could be the 32nd player to reach 100 caps in the near future.
  • U.S. captain Christie Rampone will miss the match with a minor MCL strain suffered during training in Los Angeles last week. She is currently the second most-capped player in U.S. and world history with 304 appearances.  
  • Hope Solo comes into the tournament with a U.S. record 81 career shutouts.
  • Solo currently boasts the most starts by a WNT goalkeeper with a 160, surpassing Briana Scurry’s 159 (from 1994-2008). Solo is tied in 11th place on the WNT’s all-time starts list with Brandi Chastain (160 games from 1988-2004).
  • At the Algarve Cup, veteran midfielder Shannon Boxx saw her first game action since April of 2013 when she played against Germany during a 3-3 tie in Offenbach. Boxx’s long layoff was due to injuries, but also pregnancy; she gave birth to a baby daughter a little more than one year ago. Boxx played in three Algarve Cup matches off the bench and now has 27 goals in 189 caps for the USA. She has played in the past three Women’s World Cups and three Olympic tournaments.
  • Carli Lloyd was the only player to log all 450 minutes during the 2014 CONCACAF Women’s Championship. She was named MVP of the tournament after scoring five goals.
  • Nine players on the roster are trying to make their first Women’s World Cup squad: Ashlyn Harris, Alyssa Naeher, Crystal Dunn, Whitney Engen, Julie Johnston, Meghan Klingenberg, Morgan Brian, Sydney Leroux and Christen Press.
  • Christen Press’ four-goal performance against Argentina in Brazil last December was the ninth such game in U.S. history and second of 2014 after Wambach scored four times against Costa Rica in the final of the CONCACAF Women’s Championship. It was the first-career hat trick for Press.
  • Brian, the USA’s youngest player at age 22, was the 2014 U.S. Soccer Young Female Athlete of the Year.
  • While Abby Wambach is the USA’s top scorer on the roster with 178 goals, Lloyd is next with 63 career international goals and Morgan has 51. Heather O’Reilly has scored 41.
  • All nine NWSL clubs are represented on the roster. 

Megan Rapinoe, Sydney Leroux
Megan Rapinoe celebrates scoring in the second of two matches vs. New Zealand in 2013 with Sydney Leroux.

IN THE RECORD BOOKS:

  • With three goals against Argentina on Dec. 18, Carli Lloyd upped her career total to 61 and moved into sole possession of seventh place on the U.S. WNT’s all-time goal scoring list, passing Shannon MacMillan who scored 60 goals in her career. Lloyd, now with 63 goals, is the highest-scoring player in U.S. history who has played exclusively as a midfielder.
  • 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, 2014. Now with 217, she is seventh on the USA’s all-time list. Abby Wambach (238) and Christie Rampone (304) are the only active players ahead of her.
  • O’Reilly is the second-youngest player to hit 200 caps for the USA. Lilly was 28 years, 9 months and 15 days old when she earned cap No. 200 on May 7, 2000. O’Reilly was 29 years, 2 months and 10 days old when she earned her 200th cap.
  • O’Reilly is currently sixth all-time in assists with 52 and is 13th all-time in goals with 41.
  • In addition to breaking Mia Hamm’s world scoring record, 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 four more and now sits at 43. She has 35 two-goal games, five hat tricks, two four-goal games and one five-goal game.
  • Sydney Leroux is 15th on the all-time U.S. WNT goal scoring list with 33 goals.
  • With her game-winning goal against England on Feb. 13, Alex Morgan became the 10th player in U.S. history to score 50 or more goals. She now has 51. 
BY THE NUMBERS:
0.50           Goals per game the USA has allowed in 2015
2                USA’s FIFA ranking
1.33           Goals per game the USA scored in 2015
6                Number of different U.S. players to score a goal in 2015
8                Assists by Carli Lloyd to lead the team in 2014
20              Goals in 41 career games for Christen Press, a goal in slightly less than every two games
63              Career goals by Lloyd, most ever for a WNT player who has played exclusively as a midfielder
81              Career shutouts by Hope Solo, an all-time U.S. WNT record 
82              Minutes on the field per goal averaged by Sydney Leroux in her career
96              Minutes on the field per goal averaged by Alex Morgan in her career
99              Minutes on the field per goal averaged by Abby Wambach in her career
112            U.S. victories when Wambach scores a goal (112-2-8 overall)
130            Minutes on the field per goal averaged by Mia Hamm in her career
304            Caps by Christie Rampone, second all-time to Kristine Lilly (352)

SEND-OFF SERIES BRINGS U.S. WNT TO NORCAL, SOCAL AND NJ: The USA will play just 360 more minutes of international soccer before the Women’s World Cup kicks off this summer. Three of the final four remaining matches will be part of the USA’s Send-Off Series [TICKETS]. These three games will take the WNT to the new Avaya Stadium in San Jose, California, to face Ireland on May 10; the familiar surroundings of StubHub Center in Carson, California, on May 17 to face Mexico; and Red Bull Arena in Harrison, New Jersey, on May 30, to play the Korea Republic. The USA’s 23-player Women’s World Cup roster will likely be named before the squad begins the Send-Off Series.

The U.S. Women's National Team was drawn into Group D at the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup where it will face Australia, Nigeria and Sweden. The seventh edition of the tournament will take place from June 6-July 5 in Canada. The U.S. will open the tournament against Australia on June 8 at Winnipeg Stadium, face Sweden on June 12 in Winnipeg, and finish Group D play against Nigeria on June 16 at BC Place in Vancouver. The USA, Nigeria and Sweden have competed in every edition of the FIFA Women's World Cup.

2015 U.S. WNT SCHEDULE:

Date

Opponent

Time

TV/Result

Venue

Feb. 8

France

--

0-2 L

Stade du Moustoir; Lorient, France

Feb. 13

England

--

1-0 W

stadiummk; Milton Keynes, England

March 4

Norway*

--

2-1 W

Vila Real de San Antonio, Portugal

March 6

Switzerland*

--

3-0 W

Vila Real de San Antonio, Portugal

March 9

Iceland*

--

0-0 T

Lagos, Portugal

March 11

France*

--

2-0 W

Faro, Portugal

April 4

New Zealand

3 p.m. CT

FOX Sports 1

Busch Stadium; St. Louis, Mo.

May 10

Ireland

11:30 a.m. PT

FOX Sports 1

Avaya Stadium; San Jose, Calif.

May 17

Mexico

6 p.m. PT

FOX Sports 1

StubHub Center; Carson, Calif.

May 30

Korea Rep.

4:30 p.m. ET

ESPN, WatchESPN

Red Bull Arena; Harrison, N.J.

June 8

Australia

6:30 p.m. CT

FOX Sports

Winnipeg Stadium; Winnipeg, Canada

June 12

Sweden

7 p.m. CT

FOX Sports

Winnipeg Stadium; Winnipeg, Canada

June 16

Nigeria

5 p.m. PT

FOX Sports

BC Place Stadium; Vancouver, Canada

* Algarve Cup

Lauren Holiday
WNT Midfielder Lauren Holiday evades New Zealand's Helen Collins in the teams' last meeting in 2013.

USA VS. NEW ZEALAND SERIES

  • The U.S. has a 10-1-1 overall record against New Zealand. New Zealand won the first match between the two sides 1-0 on Dec. 15, 1987, in Taipei, Taiwan, and earned a tie in the teams’ most recent game, a 1-1 draw in Columbus, Ohio, on Oct. 30, 2013. Sydney Leroux opened the scoring for the USA in the 42nd minute, but Hannah Wilkinson equalized with just three minutes left, although the USA out-shot the Kiwis 14-6. Prior to that game, the USA defeated New Zealand 4-1 on Oct. 27 at Candlestick Park in San Francisco. Megan Rapinoe, Carli Lloyd, Christen Press and Heather O’Reilly tallied for the USA in one of the last games played at Candlestick, while Wilkinson was the scorer for the Kiwis.
  • Since the series opening loss, the USA has an 11-game unbeaten streak against New Zealand, posting seven shutouts with a 43-4 scoring advantage during that stretch.
  • Before the Oct. 27 match in San Francisco, the USA had last played New Zealand in the quarterfinal of the 2012 Olympics in Newcastle, England, a 2-0 victory in which Abby Wambach scored early and Sydney Leroux added a late goal to send the Americans to the semifinal.
  • The U.S. also played New Zealand in the 2008 Olympics, earning a 4-0 victory during group play to advance to the quarterfinals. Heather O’Reilly scored a goal 40 seconds into the match, which at the time was the fastest goal scored for the U.S. WNT before Wambach’s 38-second goal to open a 14-0 victory against the Dominican Republic on Jan. 19, 2012, in the CONCACAF Women’s Olympic Qualifying Tournament. O’Reilly’s goal is still the fastest goal in Olympic history.
  • New Zealand came as close to defeating the USA as it ever has since that first match on Feb. 11, 2012, in sub-freezing temperatures in Frisco, Texas. Forward Hannah Wilkinson, who currently plays at the University of Tennessee, scored in the 49th minute (she now has NZ’s last three goals against the Americans) and the USA needed two very late goals from Alex Morgan in front of a crowd of more than 20,000. Morgan scored in the 88th minute and then bagged a game-winner three minutes into stoppage time. Both were on headers. New Zealand’s goal came on its only shot on goal during the match.

LAST TIME

On the field for the USA vs. NZL:
Oct. 30, 2013 – Columbus Crew Stadium; Columbus, Ohio

USA                1          Leroux 42
NZL                1          Wilkinson 87 

Lineups:
USA: 1-Hope Solo; 11-Ali Krieger, 4-Becky Sauerbrunn, 3-Christie Rampone (capt.) (16-Rachel Buehler, 46), 8-Kristie Mewis; 7-Yael Averbuch (10-Carli Lloyd, 70), 15-Megan Rapinoe, 12-Lauren Holiday; 9-Heather O’Reilly, 20-Abby Wambach, 2-Sydney Leroux (23-Christen Press, 78)
Substitutions Not Used: 13-Alex Morgan, 18-Nicole Barnhart, 22-Meghan Klingenberg, 26-Leigh Ann Robinson
Head coach: Tom Sermanni

NZL: 21-Erin Nayler (1-Jenny Bindon, 46); 5-Abby Erceg (capt.), 2-Ria Percival, 7-Ali Riley, 15-Rebekah Stott; 11-Kirsty Yallop (13-Rosie White, 79), 4-Katie Hoyle, 16-Annalie Longo (12-Betsy Hassett, 60); 10-Sarah Gregorius (20-Hellen Collins, 67), 9-Amber Hearn, 17-Hannah Wilkinson (18-Megan Lee,90+2)
Substitutions Not Used: 3-Anna Green, 6-Meikayla Moore, 14-Elizabeth Milne, 19-Stephanie Skilton
Head coach: Tony Readings

IN FOCUS: NEW ZEALAND
Current FIFA World Ranking: 17
2015 Women’s World Cup Qualifying: Won the 2014 OFC Women’s Championship (3-0-0; 30 GF, 0 GA)
Women’s World Cup Finals Appearances: 4 –1991 (11th), 2007 (15th), 2011 (12th), 2015
Record vs. USA: 1-10-1
Head Coach: Tony Readings
Championship Honors: Oceania Champions (1983, 1991, 2007, 2010, 2014)
Leading Women’s World Cup Qualifying Scorers: Amber Hearn (7), Helen Collins (5), Sarah Gregorius (3), Annalie Longo (3), Rosie White (3)
Key Players: Abby Erceg (Jena), Ali Riley (FC Rosengard), Amber Hearn (Jena), Hannah Wilkinson (University of Tennessee), Katie Hoyle (Notts County)

NEW ZEALAND ROSTER NOTES

  • After New Zealand’s performance at the 2012 London Olympics when it became the first New Zealand soccer team to reach the quarterfinals of a major tournament at any level, the Kiwis’ women’s soccer was seen as a genuine medal prospect for Rio 2016 and received funding of $800,000 NZD ($650,000 on current exchange rates) into the women's program for both 2014 and 2015.
  • New Zealand has had many players play college soccer in the United States, including two key players on this roster: forwards Rosie White (formerly of UCLA) and Hannah Wilkinson (currently at Tennessee). Midfielder Katie Bowen plays for the University of North Carolina.
  • Defender Ali Riley is an American from Pacific Palisades, California, who starred at Stanford and played in the WPS with the Bay Area FC Gold Pride and the Western New York Flash, winning league titles in both seasons. She was the WPS Rookie of the Year in 2010 with the Gold Pride. She is currently playing with Malmo in the Swedish First Division and won the league title there, as well.
  • New Zealand’s journey to Canada 2015 lasted a mere five days as the Football Ferns topped its four-nation Oceania qualifying tournament without any trouble. A perfect three-match record saw 30 goals scored and none allowed. Key striker Amber Hearn scored seven goals in the tournament, while an even more notable milestone was achieved at the other end of the field as captain and central defender Abby Erceg became the first male or female New Zealander to reach 100 caps.
  • Coach Tony Readings assumed the reins in the wake of John Herdman’s departure in 2011 with the latter taking over the coaching role with Canada. Readings successfully led the team at the 2012 Olympic Games where it reached the knockout stage of a major tournament for the first time. English-born Readings enjoyed several years at the helm of the nation’s U-20 side and thus has a strong background in New Zealand women’s football. Readings has continued to slowly reinvigorate the team, adding youth to help the depth of the squad and helping the side develop a modern brand of football while still boasting the nation’s traditional strengths. 


1Nation. 1Team. 23STORIES.

Watch "One Nation. One Team. 23 Stories." on ussoccer.com Starting April 29!

WNT Beats New Zealand in front of Huge Crowd at Busch Stadium

The U.S. Women's National Team tuned up for the 2015 Send-Off Series with a 4-0 win in front of more than 35,000 at Busch Stadium in St. Louis.

Highlights: WNT Puts Four Past New Zealand in St. Louis

A crowd of more than 35,000 watched the U.S. Women’s National Team claim a 4-0 victory against New Zealand at Busch Stadium in St. Louis.

GOAL: Morgan Brian Caps Off WNT Win Over Football Ferns

Morgan Brian helped create a New Zealand turnover in midfield, continued her run, received a pass from Sydney Leroux, and finished into the lower-left corner.

GOAL: Julie Johnston Heads Home Her Second Goal in as Many Games

From a free kick in the left channel, Lauren Holiday looped in a ball that Johnston met with a powerful header from the center of the New Zealand penalty area. Her shot left New Zealand goalkeeper Erin Naylor no chance as it caromed in off the cross bar for her second-career goal.

GOAL: Lori Chalupny Scores in Front of Her Home Town Crowd

After a short corner, Megan Rapinoe took the ball in from the left and laid a pass back to Lori Chalupny who curled a shot from 16 yards out into the far right corner of the New Zealand net.

GOAL: Klingenberg Rocket Gives USA 1-0 Lead vs. New Zealand

New Zealand cleared an Ali Krieger cross, but only to the top of the penalty box where it bounced to Meghan Klingenberg, who ran onto it and blasted a half volley into the upper left corner.

WNT Set to Face NZL in Front of Huge Crowd in STL

The WNT will begin its four-game home schedule leading into the 2015 Women’s World Cup with a match against New Zealand at Busch Stadium in St. Louis on April 4 and a record crowd will be on hand.

WNT for Club and Country

The fast-approaching Women’s World Cup has kept the WNT players tremendously busy around the USA and the world, but they are looking forward to the chance to turn out for their NWSL clubs and play a handful of games before the final stretch run to Canada.
×