USWNT vs. South Africa - Starting XI & Lineup Notes

Broadcast: TNT, Universo, Peacock; Official Kickoff Time: 7:37 p.m. ET

USWNT vs. South Africa – International Friendly
September 21, 2023
Venue: TQL Stadium; Cincinnati, Ohio
Broadcast: TNT, Universo, Peacock
Official Kickoff Time: 7:37 p.m. ET

Starting XI vs. South Africa:
1-Alyssa Naeher; 4-Naomi Girma, 6-Lynn Williams, 8-Julie Ertz (Capt.), 10-Lindsey Horan, 11-Alana Cook, 13-Alex Morgan, 14-Emily Sonnett, 19-Crystal Dunn, 23-Emily Fox, 25-Trinity Rodman

Available Subs: 2-Ashley Sanchez, 5-M.A. Vignola, 7-Ashley Hatch, 9-Alyssa Thompson, 12-Tierna Davidson, 17-Andi Sullivan, 18-Casey Murphy, 20-Casey Krueger, 21-Aubrey Kingsbury, 22-Savannah DeMelo, 26-Jaedyn Shaw, 27-Sam Coffey

Not Dressing: Mia Fishel, Sofia Huerta, Midge Purce, Megan Rapinoe


  • USWNT Starting XI Cap Numbers (Including this match): Morgan (212), Dunn (137), Horan (134), Ertz (123), Naeher (96), Sonnett (78), Williams (56), Fox (34), Cook (26), Rodman (23), Girma (21)
  • All 11 players in tonight’s starting lineup to take on South Africa were a part of the USA’s roster for the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup, led by Naeher, Girma and Ertz, who played every minute for the USWNT in New Zealand and Australia. Andi Sullivan, who also played every minute of the World Cup, is available off the bench.
  • The starting XI to face Vietnam averages 84 caps per player and averages 28.3 years of age.  
  • Julie Ertz will captain the USA as she earns her 123rd and final cap for the USWNT. Ertz, who debuted for the USWNT in February of 2013, competed in five world championship events with the USWNT, winning back-to-back World Cups in 2015 and 2019 and helping the USA to bronze at the delayed Tokyo Olympics. Ertz has an overall winning percentage of 88.9% with the U.S. – the sixth-best win percentage of any player in USWNT history with 100 or more caps, helping the team to an overall record of 100 wins, 17 draws and just five losses in her 122 international appearances.
  • Alyssa Naeher will earn her 96th cap, inching closer and closer to the 100-cap milestone, as she makes her 10th start of 2023. Naeher, who was once again stellar for the USA at the World Cup, conceded just one goal in four games and became the first goalkeeper ever to take and make a penalty kick at a FIFA Women’s World Cup. Naeher has seven shutouts this season, two away from matching her single year record with the USWNT set in both 2018 and 2019.
  • Naomi Girma will make her sixth consecutive start for the USWNT, the longest such streak of her international career, as she earns her 21st cap. Girma has played the full match in 15 of her previous 20 career appearances, 18 of which have been starts.
  • Lynn Williams will earn her 56th cap as she makes her third start of 2023. Williams, who appeared in two games at the World Cup and made one start, has one goal and one assist this year after missing nearly the entirety of 2022 with a torn hamstring.
  • After co-captaining the USA at the World Cup, Lindsey Horan will make her 134th international appearance, moving into a tie with Tisha Venturini and Cat Whitehill for 27th on the USA’s all-time caps charts. Horan leads the USA with 973 total minutes played this year and has started 11 of the team’s 12 games in 2023, tallying three goals – two of which came at the World Cup.
  • Alana Cook will see her first action for the USWNT since the July 9 Send-Off Match against Wales as she makes her seventh appearance of 2023 and the 26th overall of her international career. Cook scored her first international goal earlier this year, that coming on her birthday – April 11 – in the USA’s 1-0 win over the Republic of Ireland.
  • Alex Morgan, who co-captained the USA in New Zealand and Australia, will make her 12th start of the year in what will be her 212th international appearance. Morgan scored a hat-trick in the USA’s most recent match in Cincinnati, an 8-0 victory over Paraguay in September of 2021, and has two goals and three assists on the year. Morgan reached the 50-assist milestone during the World Cup when she set up Sophia Smith’s opening goal against Vietnam, becoming just the eighth player in USWNT history with 50+ international goals and 50+ assists.
  • After a top-class showing against Sweden in the World Cup Round of 16, Emily Sonnett will make her second consecutive start as she earns her 78th cap for the USWNT. This will be Sonnett’s ninth appearance of 2023 but just her second start of the year and marks her first time making back-to-back starts for the USWNT since the 2022 Concacaf W Championship.
  • Crystal Dunn will make her 11th appearance – and 11th start – of 2023 as she earns her 137th cap for the USA, moving into a tie for 25th on the USWNT’s all-time caps charts with Cincinnati native Heather Mitts. Dunn started all four matches at the 2023 World Cup and helped the USA to a staunch defensive showing.
  • After playing all but eight minutes for the USA at the World Cup, Emily Fox, will make her 34th appearance for the USWNT in what will be her 12th appearance and 11th start of 2023. Fox is currently second on the team in minutes played in 2023 with 940 and is third on the team in total minutes played since the 2021 Olympics with 2,161 minutes of action, trailing only Sullivan and Horan.
  • Trinity Rodman will make her seventh start of the year as she earns her 23rd career cap with the USWNT. The youngest player in tonight’s starting lineup at 21-years-old, Rodman will be making her team-leading 13th appearance of 2023 and has two goals and three assists on the year. The only other player to appear in each of the USA’s 12 games so far this year is Sullivan, who is available off the bench.
  • Cincinnati-natives Aubrey Kingsbury and M.A. Vignola are both available off the bench for the USA tonight. Kingsbury has one cap, which she earned in April of 2022, while Vignola could have the rare distinction of making her international debut in her hometown.