The U.S. Under-17 Women’s National Team will resume play at the 2016 FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup on Oct. 4 against Ghana at King Abdullah II International Stadium in Amman, Jordan. The match will air live on FS2 starting at 8:55 a.m. ET and fans can also watch on FOX Sports GO app, FOXSportsGo.com and FOXSoccer2GO.com (Free Code: U17WNT). Fans can also follow all the matches of the U.S. U-17 WNT on Twitter @ussoccer_ynt. For full coverage, visit the FIFA Under-17 Women’s World Cup tournament page on ussoccer.com. These are the first matches by any U.S. Women’s National Team in Jordan and the first matches by any U.S. Women’s National Team in the Middle East.
U.S. U-17 Women’s World Cup Team Roster by Position - DETAILED | MEET THE TEAM
GOALKEEPERS (3): 21-Hillary Beall (So Cal Blues; Laguna Beach, Calif.), 1-Laurel Ivory (West Florida Flames; Surfside Fla.), 12-Meagan McClelland (PDA; Kearny, N.J.)
DEFENDERS (7): 4-Naomi Girma (Central Valley Crossfire; San Jose, Calif.), 9-Kiara Pickett (Eagles; Santa Barbara, Calif.), 13-Isabel Rodriguez (Michigan Hawks; Canton, Mich.), 5-Karina Rodriguez (So Cal Blues; Torrance, Calif.) 6-Emily Smith (De Anza Force; Los Gatos, Calif.), 15-Kennedy Wesley (So Cal Blues; Rossmoor, Calif.), 11-Kate Wiesner (Slammers FC; Monrovia, Calif.)
MIDFIELDERS (7): 2-Jordan Canniff (Richmond United; California, Md.), 17-Lia Godfrey (Jacksonville Armada; Fleming Island, Fla.), 18-Jaelin Howell (Real Colorado; Windsor, Colo.), 8-Brianna Pinto (CASL; Durham, N.C.), 7-Alexa Spaanstra (Michigan Hawks; Brighton, Mich.), 20-Frankie Tagliaferri (PDA; Colts Neck, N.J.), 16-Sydney Zandi (Penn Fusion; West Chester, Penn.)
FORWARDS (4): 14-Civana Kuhlmann (Colorado Rush; Littleton, Colo.), 19-Adrienne Richardson (Minnesota Thunder Academy; Oakdale, Minn.), 10-Ashley Sanchez (So Cal Blues; Monrovia, Calif.), 3-Sophia Smith (Real Colorado; Windsor, Colo.)
U-17 WNT vs. Ghana: The USA and Ghana have never met in a U-17 Women’s World Cup, but the USA has met Ghana twice before in a U-20 Women’s World Cup, opening against Ghana in the 2012 U-20 Women’s World Cup in Japan (a 4-0 U.S. win) and at the 2010 U-20 Women’s World Cup in Germany (1-1 draw). The U.S. women have never played Ghana at the senior level.
Ghana at the U-17 WWC: Ghana, like Nigeria, has qualified for every FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup to date and is 8-7-2 all time in the tournament. Ghana went out after group play in 2008 and 2010, but in Azerbaijan in 2012, the Black Maidens had a big breakthrough, becoming the first African team to reach the semifinals where they lost to eventual winners France before claiming third place with a 1-0 win over Germany. Ghana also made it to the knockout rounds two years ago in Costa Rica, having topped a formidable group that also featured the Germany, Canada and Korea DPR. They suffered a heart-breaking exit in the quarterfinals, going out on penalties to Italy after a thrilling 2-2 draw.
Less Than Ideal Start: Ghana is coming off a 5-0 loss to Japan in their 2016 FIFA U17 Women's World Cup opening match. The Japanese scored four goals within the first 27 minutes. Forward Riko Ueki opened the scoring in the 7th minute before Jun Endo added the second goal in the 11th minute. Endo also the third goal and Saori Takarada tallied 27th minute to make the halftime score 4-0 in favor of the defending champions. Ghana had a stronger second half, creating some scoring chances, but could not penetrate the Japan defense and gave up a fifth goal towards the end of the game to Remina Chiba.
Kuhlmann, Tagliaferri and Sanchez: The U.S. U-17s have scored 47 goals in 2016 and three players have combined for more than half of them. Forward Civana Kuhlmann leads the USA in goals this year with 13, while U-17 captain Ashley Sanchez and Frankie Tagliaferri have eight each. In addition to these three, 10 other players have scored for the USA. Kuhlmann has a total of 15 goals in 18 total U-17 caps, while Sanchez continues her goal per game average, netting 19 goals in 19 U-17 appearances. Kuhlmann’s hat trick against Paraguay on Oct. 1 was the first by a U.S. player in a U-17 WWC, but the fourth by a U.S. player in a youth Women’s World Cup. Sydney Leroux scored three times against Switzerland at the 2010 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup in Germany; Maya Hayes had a hat trick against Ghana at the 2012 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup in Japan; and Kelly Wilson scored three goals against Denmark at the 2002 U-19 Women’s World Championship. This U-17 cycle is the second for Kuhlmann and Tagliaferri as they were also a part of the U.S. team that failed to qualify for this tournament two years ago in Jamaica despite out-scoring the opposition 24-1 in the tournament. The USA fell in penalty kicks to Mexico in the semifinal after drawing 1-1 in regulation during a cycle in which just two CONCACAF teams qualified due to the tournament being held in Costa Rica.
U.S. Roster Breakdown: Lia Godfrey is the youngest player with a November of 2001 birthday while Tagliaferri is the oldest, having been born on Jan. 18, 1999. Fifteen different youth clubs from nine states are represented on the roster with the So Cal Blues out of Southern California having four players on the roster. Real Colorado, the Michigan Hawks and PDA out of New Jersey have two players each. The roster includes eight players from California (six from Southern, two from Northern), three players from Colorado and two each from Michigan, Florida and New Jersey. U-17 WNT head coach B.J. Snow selected two high school freshman (Canniff and Godfrey), two sophomores (Wiesner and Wesley), six juniors (Ivory, Sophie Smith, Girma, Pinto, McClelland and Howell), and 10 seniors (Karina Rodriguez, Emily Smith, Pickett, Sanchez, Isabel Rodriguez, Kuhlmann, Zandi, Richardson, Tagliaferri and Beall).
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