U.S. girls’s nationwide group coach Twila Kilgore has named her 23-player roster for the upcoming CONCACAF W Gold Cup, with three further coaching gamers that may take part within the pre-tournament camp, together with ahead Mallory Swanson. This will likely be Swanson’s official return to the nationwide group atmosphere following her restoration from a torn patellar tendon final April.
“Mal will are available and be Mal. We’re thrilled to have her again within the camp atmosphere,” Kilgore mentioned. “We all know that in something that Mal’s doing, she brings a extremely excessive stage of professionalism, a excessive stage of execution. We consider she’s completely prepared for the step, and she or he’s only a actually vital chief on this group.”
The roster is essentially unchanged from the group’s closing friendlies of 2023 towards China in December, with the notable returns of goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher (who might earn her one centesimal cap in the course of the Gold Cup) and defender Crystal Dunn. Veterans Becky Sauerbrunn and Alex Morgan, who weren’t on the December roster, are notable absences this camp.
“We have now fairly a number of gamers that aren’t in camp that we’re nonetheless and evaluating when it comes to main as much as the Olympics. No person is out of the combination. That goes for a few of our greater names. That goes for lesser names that we’ve been monitoring. We need to get it proper,” Kilgore mentioned. “By way of Alex — I assume this goes for actually everyone that’s not right here — every little thing that occurs within the Gold Cup will matter when it comes to the long run and every little thing that’s occurring outdoors of the Gold Cup will matter sooner or later.”
In a brand new twist following a busy NWSL offseason, NJ/NY Gotham FC now leads the way in which in NWSL illustration with seven gamers: defenders Dunn, Tierna Davidson, and Jenna Nighswonger; midfielders Rose Lavelle and Emily Sonnett; and forwards Midge Purce and Lynn Williams. For the reason that final USWNT roster, six gamers have signed with new golf equipment.
Midfielder Savannah DeMelo and defender Gisele Thompson are the 2 different non-rostered gamers who will prepare with the USWNT. Gisele Thompson, youthful sister to ahead Alyssa Thompson, lately signed with Angel Metropolis FC and has earned her first senior group call-up. Whereas it’s restricted to the coaching atmosphere, the nod is one other optimistic signal for Gisele Thompson constructing on her youth nationwide group expertise.
“That is only a good alternative for Gisele to get a firsthand have a look at what the atmosphere is definitely like,” Kilgore mentioned. “Clearly, she’s beginning her profession within the NWSL, so she’s received a whole lot of firsts however I feel this is a vital piece for her to grasp what she’s working in the direction of.”
Goalkeepers (3): Jane Campbell (Houston Sprint), Casey Murphy (North Carolina Braveness), Alyssa Naeher (Chicago Crimson Stars)
Defenders (8): Alana Cook dinner (Seattle Reign FC), Abby Dahlkemper (San Diego Wave FC), Crystal Dunn ((NY/NJ Gotham FC) Tierna Davidson (NJ/NY Gotham FC), Emily Fox (Arsenal), Naomi Girma (San Diego Wave FC), Casey Krueger (Washington Spirit), Jenna Nighswonger (NY/NJ Gotham FC)
Midfielders (6): Korbin Albert (PSG), Sam Coffey (Portland Thorns FC), Lindsey Horan (Olympique Lyon), Rose Lavelle (NJ/NY Gotham FC), Olivia Moultrie (Portland Thorns FC), Emily Sonnett (NJ/NY Gotham FC)
Forwards (6): Mia Fishel (Chelsea FC), Midge Purce (NJ/NY Gotham FC), Trinity Rodman (Washington Spirit), Jaedyn Shaw (San Diego Wave FC), Sophia Smith (Portland Thorns FC), Lynn Williams (NJ/NY Gotham FC)
CALIFORNIA, HERE WE COME!
— U.S. Girls’s Nationwide Soccer Staff (@USWNT) February 7, 2024
How you can watch the Gold Cup
The inaugural W Gold Cup options 12 groups, eight from CONCACAF and 4 visitor nations: Argentina, Brazil, Colombia and Paraguay. Within the U.S., CBS holds the rights to the match, with each match out there on Paramount+.
The USWNT will play all three group stage matches at Dignity Well being Sports activities Park in Carson, Calif. All video games kick off at 7:15 p.m. PT/10:15 p.m. ET:
- vs. Guyana/Dominican Republic (winner of prelim. match), Tuesday, Feb. 20
- vs. Argentina, Friday, Feb. 23
- vs. Mexico, Monday, Feb. 26
The 12 groups are break up into three teams of 4. The highest two finishers of every group, plus the 2 finest third-place groups (that’s eight groups complete) advance to the quarterfinals at BMO Stadium in LA. The quarterfinals will likely be seeded based mostly on outcomes, with 1 vs. 8, 2 vs. 7, and many others.
The 4 winners will head to San Diego and Snapdragon Stadium for the semifinals and closing, with the match wrapping up on March 10.
“Not solely is there a trophy on the road, however this can be a nice alternative to capitalize on significant match alternatives and expertise the quick turnarounds between video games, which is a rhythm that carefully mirrors the Olympic format,” Kilgore mentioned within the press launch.
The video games are significant, however they’re additionally the primary of the yr. The group will probably deal with this as an prolonged preseason and that ought to be the largest takeaway; in the event that they undergo to the ultimate, that’s a whole lot of time collectively on coaching fields and incomes recreation minutes. They most likely gained’t be the prettiest video games, but it surely’s nonetheless going to be a whole lot of information for everybody — together with incoming head coach Emma Hayes. The difficult steadiness that Kilgore and the squad are going to should hit is acknowledging the stress of that looming Olympics roster whereas attempting out new ways and combos.
Everybody (together with me) was rightfully excited in regards to the rosters for the December friendlies. Seeing the continuity between the 2 camps isn’t that shocking, however what’s most fun is the possibility to see gamers like Jaedyn Shaw and Mia Fishel develop into anticipated names on a USWNT roster — and candidates to get some begins too.
If there’s one factor that’s going to unite everybody in pleasure, it’s seeing Swanson inch nearer to a full nationwide group return. Earlier than her harm final April, Swanson was in electrical type. Regardless of her prolonged absence, Swanson led the group in targets (7) final yr. There’s no must push her again forward of the Olympics since anybody concerned with the USWNT already is aware of precisely what she brings to the combination, so permitting her to get again into type through the NWSL is the precise factor to do.
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I wrote after the December friendlies that the group had acquired the wins not “in excellent vogue, however in a means that instructed us one thing in regards to the path and instant way forward for the challenge forward of the Olympics.” These video games have been additionally comparatively quiet, with smaller attendance numbers and restricted press protection.
We’re in an Olympic yr now, although. It’s not fairly the identical as a World Cup yr, and the gamers nonetheless have a number of months but to construct out of the highlight. When Emma Hayes will get right here, all bets are off. For now, the Gold Cup might be vital in getting the small stuff so as.
(Photograph: Sam Hodde/Getty Photographs)