Andonovski Names 24-Player Roster For January BioSteel Training Camp And Matches In New Zealand

USWNT Will Play at Both of its World Cup Group Venues, Facing the Football Ferns at Sky Stadium in Wellington (Jan. 17 at 10 p.m. ET) and at Eden Park in Auckland (Jan. 20 at 10 p.m. ET)

CHICAGO (Jan. 5, 2023) – U.S. Women’s National Team head coach Vlatko Andonovski has named a 24-player roster for the January BioSteel Training Camp and trip to New Zealand that will include two matches against the Football Ferns, the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup co-hosts.

The USWNT will train in New Zealand for six days before facing the Ferns at Sky Stadium (which Wellington Regional Stadium during the World Cup) in Wellington / Te Whanganui-a-Tara. The match will kick off at 4 p.m. local time on January 18, which will be 10 p.m. ET on January 17 in the United States. The teams meet again on January 21 at Eden Park in Auckland / Tāmaki Makaurau, also at 4 p.m. local, which will be 10 p.m. ET on January 20 in the USA. Tickets for both matches are on sale through New Zealand Football.

TNT and HBO Max will be the exclusive English-language home for live U.S. Soccer coverage starting in 2023. Both matches from New Zealand will be available on HBO Max. On game days, fans can head to the HBO Max homepage or the sports genre page to tune in to the match live as well as for pre- and post-game coverage with no commercial breaks. Replays of the match will be available immediately following post-game coverage.

Two players return to this first U.S. roster of the year after recovering from long-term injuries in defender Emily Sonnett and forward Lynn Williams, but the USA will be without forwards Sophia Smith (foot) and Megan Rapinoe (ankle). Sonnett, who has 69 caps, last played for the USA in the semifinal of the Concacaf W Championship on July 14 against Costa Rica, a match in which she scored her first international goal. Williams (47 caps/14 goals), who had hamstring surgery that kept her out for the entire 2022 NWSL season, last played for the USA on February 23 at the 2022 SheBelieves Cup.

“We’ve been thinking about and planning for the World Cup for a long time, but when the calendar turns to the World Cup year, for sure it brings some renewed focus and energy as the tournament starts in less than 200 days,” said Andonovski. “To get to bring the team to New Zealand in January and play in our World Cup venues has so many benefits so we are going to make sure we maximize our time together, make this trip as productive as possible and enjoy a unique experience as many of our players have never been to New Zealand before.”

U.S. Women’s National Team Roster by Position (Club; Caps/Goals) – January BioSteel Training Camp NZL:

GOALKEEPERS (3): Adrianna Franch (Kansas City Current; 10), Casey Murphy (North Carolina Courage; 11), Alyssa Naeher (Chicago Red Stars; 86)

DEFENDERS (8): Alana Cook (OL Reign; 19/0), Crystal Dunn (Portland Thorns FC; 126/24), Emily Fox (Racing Louisville FC; 22/0), Naomi Girma (San Diego Wave FC; 10/0), Sofia Huerta (OL Reign; 25/0), Hailie Mace (Kansas City Current; 8/0), Becky Sauerbrunn (Portland Thorns FC; 211/0), Emily Sonnett (Washington Spirit; 69/1)

MIDFIELDERS (7): Sam Coffey (Portland Thorns FC; 4/0), Lindsey Horan (Olympique Lyon, FRA; 122/26), Taylor Kornieck (San Diego Wave FC; 7/1), Rose Lavelle (OL Reign; 84/22), Kristie Mewis (NJ/NY Gotham FC; 46/7), Ashley Sanchez (Washington Spirit; 17/3), Andi Sullivan (Washington Spirit; 37/3)

FORWARDS (6): Ashley Hatch (Washington Spirit; 14/4), Alex Morgan (San Diego Wave FC; 200/119), Midge Purce (NJ/NY Gotham FC; 20/4), Trinity Rodman (Washington Spirit; 10/2), Mallory Swanson (Chicago Red Stars; 82/25), Lynn Williams (Kansas City Current; 47/14)

The USA have played the Football Ferns 19 times but never in New Zealand, so these will be the first-ever matches in New Zealand for the USWNT, which has played 715 games in its history.

Although it will be the height of summer when the USA visits New Zealand in January, the upcoming World Cup marks the first ever FIFA Women’s World Cup held in the in southern hemisphere, where it will be winter and matches could be played in chilly temperatures.

At the World Cup, which is taking place from July 20-Aug. 20 in 10 stadiums across nine host cities -- five in Australia and four in New Zealand -- the USWNT will open Group E play against Vietnam on July 22 at Eden Park in Auckland/Tāmaki Makaurau, which will also serve as the host venue for the Opening Ceremony of the 2023 World Cup on July 20 when New Zealand plays Norway. The USA then faces Netherlands on July 27 at Wellington Regional Stadium in Wellington/Te Whanganui-a-Tara, followed by the Group A Playoff Winner on Aug. 1 at Eden Park in Auckland/Tāmaki Makaurau.

Additional Notes:

  • The former Mallory Pugh, who married Chicago Cubs shortstop Dansby Swanson in December of last year, will play with her married name on the back of her jersey for the first time in these first matches of 2023.
  • The roster features just four players with 100 caps or more in defender Becky Sauerbrunn (211), Alex Morgan (200), Crystal Dunn (126) and Lindsey Horan (122).
  • The roster features 14 players with 25 or fewer caps, including three players with single-digit caps in Hailie Mace (8), Taylor Kornieck (7) and Sam Coffey (4).
  • Morgan is by far the leading scorer on the roster with 119 career goals, good for fifth in U.S. history. Horan has 26 international goals, Swanson has 25, Dunn has 24 and Rose Lavelle has 22.
  • Thirteen players on this roster saw action in the most recent meeting between the USA and New Zealand and the 2022 SheBelieves Cup. Swanson and Ashley Hatch both scored for the USA in the victory, while Hatch and defender Sofia Huerta tallied assists and Alyssa Naeher recorded the clean sheet.
  • Nine different NWSL clubs are represented on this roster, led by five players from the Washington Spirit and three players each from Portland Thorns FC, the Kansas City Current, San Diego Wave FC and OL Reign.
  • The matches in New Zealand mean that the USWNT will have played two matches against both of the 2023 Women’s World Cup co-hosts in their home countries in the span of 13 months after having visited Australia in late November of 2021. Two players on this roster – goalkeeper Casey Murphy and midfielder Ashley Sanchez – earned their first USWNT caps during that trip to Australia.
  • Eden Park, which seats almost 50,000 fans, is New Zealand’s National Stadium and has hosted many important sporting events in the country’s history. The original sports ground on the site opened 122 years ago in 1900.
  • This match against the USA at Eden Park will be the first-ever at the venue for the New Zealand Women’s National Team, which historically has had players spread around the world and has gotten to play intermittent home matches.
  • The match at Sky Stadium, which will seat 34,500 fans for the World Cup when it will be known as Wellington Regional Stadium due to sponsorship regulations, will be the first for the Ferns at that venue since 2018.

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