Date: Saturday, April 4, 2015
Time: 3pm CT
Location: Busch Stadium (St. Louis, MO)
TV: Fox Sports 1
The last several years have not been easy for the USWNT. Since their gold medal in London in 2012 the squad has seen the departure of Pia Sundhage (to coach her native Sweden), the firing her successor, and the appointment of Jill Ellis. The squad has experienced similar upheaval: star scorer Alex Morgan battling an ankle injury, an aging Abby Wambach trying to find her place in a younger squad, and off-field troubles for goalkeeper Hope Solo.
Never-the-less, last month, the United States women’s national team took home their 10th Algarve Cup from Portugal. The year previously was an embarrassing finish, seventh place, the USWNT’s worst showing ever at the prestigious women’s tournament. The win, a 2-0 result over France, avenged a loss of the same score from February.
The squad has welcomed new, bright stars into the fold while veterans from the field and the bench have gelled the squad before their important run to the Women’s World Cup in Canada starting in June.
Today’s match from St. Louis sees the USWNT face a familiar opponent in New Zealand. Overall the U.S. is 10-1-1 against the Kiwi’s most recently defeating them 4-1 last October. The Nats lost in their first meeting back in 1987, but since have not dropped a match posting seven shutouts and outscoring NZ 43-4 in the series.
Their are just four games left before this squad’s debut in Winnipeg against Australia. Over the course of this “Send-Off Series” of games familiar faces and new, core players will fight for the coveted eleven spots at the first whistle on June 8th.
The focus and the preparations are now on the July 5th date in Vancouver where the USWNT hopes to hoist it’s third Women’s World Cup. The road to the WWC starts today!
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)