USWNT’s First 2020 Roster Includes Usual Suspects Plus 19-Year-Old Phenom
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Coach Vlatko Andonovski announced his first USWNT roster of 2020 on Friday with 22 Women’s World Cup winners and one new face. Stanford sophomore Sophia Smith was given her first senior-team call-up as the U.S. prepares for Olympic qualifying.
The January USWNT roster includes 28 players, all but one of whom has at least one cap with the national team. The lone exception is Smith, 19, who helped the Cardinal win the 2019 NCAA title. The lone Women’s World Cup winner who isn’t on the squad for the January training camp is Alex Morgan, who is pregnant.
USWNT Roster 2020
28 strong to kick off 2020, another big year for the #USWNT.
— U.S. Soccer WNT (@USWNT) December 27, 2019
“The players are coming off their break, so I know everyone will be excited, rested, refreshed and ready to tackle our next goals, which are having a productive training camp and preparing for Olympic Qualifying,” Andonovski said on the U.S. Soccer website. “A long-time strength of this team has been the internal competition on the training field and our coaching staff is looking forward to seeing that during camp as it will help us pick the best team to take to qualifying and try to earn our berth to Tokyo.”
Aside from Morgan, Andonovski’s first roster of the new decade includes all the usual suspects, from Megan Rapinoe and Carli Lloyd to Alyssa Naeher and Julie Ertz. The team will train in Tampa, Florida, from Jan. 5-15 before the coach names the 20-player roster for Olympic Qualifying.
The Concacaf Women’s Olympic Qualifying tournament will see the U.S. play Haiti, Panama and Costa Rica in Houston (Jan. 28-Feb. 3) before semifinals and final in Carson, California (Feb. 7-9). The two teams that make the final qualify for the 2020 Olympics in Japan.
Andonovski pulled three players from his Identification Camp in December to join this squad: Portland Thorns defender Margaret “Midge” Purce, Houston Dash keeper Jane Campbell and Smith.
Smith has never appeared for the senior national team, though she’s played for the U-14, 15, 17, 18, 19, 20 and 23 teams. In 2017, she was named the U.S. Soccer Young Female Player of the Year. This past season she netted 17 goals and nine assists in 21 appearances, including two hat tricks in the NCAA tournament and a converted a penalty kick in the shootout to help win the title.
— Stanford Women's Soccer (@StanfordWSoccer) October 19, 2018
Smith is an exciting prospect for the USWNT roster, but it remains to be seen where she might fit into the team. The U.S. is already loaded with talent up front with the likes of Rapinoe, Tobin Heath, Christen Press, Mallory Pugh, Carli Lloyd, Jessica McDonald and Lynn Williams, not to mention Morgan, who plans to return to the team in time for the Olympics.
No doubt Andonovski will have a hard time cutting his roster to 18 for the 2020 Olympics.
Other news and notes from the first USWNT roster of 2020:
- Ali Krieger and Ashlyn Harris were both selected to the team just before their wedding in Miami. Expect plenty of fellow USWNT and club teammates to be at the wedding.
- Of the 18 players who played at the 2016 Olympics, 16 are on this roster. Hope Solo and Alex Morgan are the only ones missing and both are currently pregnant.
- With 121 international goals, Carli Lloyd is within nine goals of Kristine Lilly for third on the USWNT’s all-time list.
- This will be the first full USWNT camp without superstar fitness coach Dawn Scott, who left to take the same job with the England women’s national team.
USWNT Roster 2020 January Training Camp (Club; Caps/Goals)
- Goalkeepers — Jane Campbell (Houston Dash; 3/0), Adrianna Franch (Portland Thorns FC; 3/0), Ashlyn Harris (Orlando Pride; 24/0), Alyssa Naeher (Chicago Red Stars; 57/0)
- Defenders — Abby Dahlkemper (North Carolina Courage; 53/0), Tierna Davidson (Chicago Red Stars; 25/1), Crystal Dunn (North Carolina Courage; 96/24), Ali Krieger (Orlando Pride; 104/2), Kelley O’Hara (Utah Royals FC; 125/2), Margaret Purce (Portland Thorns FC; 1/0), Becky Sauerbrunn (Utah Royals FC; 171/0), Casey Short (Chicago Red Stars; 31 /0), Emily Sonnett (Portland Thorns FC; 40/0)
- Midfielders — Morgan Brian (Chicago Red Stars; 87/8), Julie Ertz (Chicago Red Stars; 95/19), Lindsey Horan (Portland Thorns FC; 78/12), Rose Lavelle (Washington Spirit; 38/10), Allie Long (Reign FC; 51/8), Samantha Mewis (North Carolina Courage; 60/14), Andi Sullivan (Washington Spirit; 15/0)
- Forwards — Tobin Heath (Portland Thorns FC; 162/32), Carli Lloyd (Sky Blue FC; 288/121), Jessica McDonald (North Carolina Courage; 14/2), Christen Press (Utah Royals FC; 130/51), Mallory Pugh (Washington Spirit; 62/18), Megan Rapinoe (Reign FC; 160/50), Sophia Smith (Stanford; 0/0), Lynn Williams (North Carolina Courage; 21/6)