The U.S. Women’s National Team has a quick turnaround for its second match in three days when it faces Brazil at 7 a.m. ET on Tuesday, April 3, at Fukuda Denshi Arena in Chiba, Japan, in its second match of the Kirin Challenge Cup. The match will be broadcast live on ESPN2 and ESPN3.
Brazil is currently fourth in the FIFA Women’s World Rankings. In the final match of the exhibition tournament, Japan and Brazil square off at 7 a.m. ET on April 5 at Homes Stadium in Kobe, Japan. The USA is coming off a 1-1 draw against host Japan on Sunday, April 1, at Yurtec Stadium in Sendai, Japan.
LONDON CALLING: With a handful of full international matches remaining before the 2012 Olympics, every game is valuable for U.S. head coach Pia Sundhage and her staff as they cut a talented and deep pool down to the 18-player roster that will compete in the Olympics. Twenty-one players have earned caps for the USA in 2012 and that number won’t grow much, if at all, as Sundhage starts focusing more on developing a starting lineup and individual roles heading into the Olympics.
U.S. ROSTER BY POSITION – Detailed Roster
GOALKEEPERS (3): 18-Nicole Barnhart, 21-Ashlyn Harris, 1-Hope Solo
DEFENDERS (9): 19-Rachel Buehler, 14-Stephanie Cox, 22-Whitney Engen, 23-Meghan Klingenberg, 6-Amy LePeilbet, 2-Heather Mitts, 5-Kelley O’Hara, 3-Christie Rampone, 4-Becky Sauerbrunn
MIDFIELDERS (7): 7-Shannon Boxx, 17-Tobin Heath, 16-Lori Lindsey, 10-Carli Lloyd, 9-Heather O’Reilly, 15-Megan Rapinoe, 8-Amy Rodriguez
FORWARDS (4): 12-Lauren Cheney, 11-Sydney Leroux, 13-Alex Morgan, 20-Abby Wambach
2012 U.S. WNT Schedule
|Jan. 20*||Domin. Rep.||14-0 W||Wambach (2), Lloyd, Buehler, O’Reilly (3), Heath, Rodriguez (5), Cheney||BC Place, Vancouver, Canada|
|Jan. 22*||Guatemala||13-0 W||Wambach (2), Cheney, Rodriguez, Lloyd, Lindsey, Leroux (5), Rapinoe, Morgan||BC Place, Vancouver, Canada|
|Jan. 24*||Mexico||4-0 W||Lloyd (3), O’Reilly||BC Place, Vancouver, Canada|
|Jan. 27*||Costa Rica||3-0 W||Heath, Lloyd, Morgan||BC Place, Vancouver, Canada|
|Jan. 29*||Canada||4-0 W||Morgan (2), Wambach (2)||BC Place, Vancouver, Canada|
|Feb. 11||New Zealand||2-1 W||Morgan (2)||FC Dallas Stadium, Frisco, Texas|
|Feb. 29^||Denmark||5-0 W||Morgan (2), Wambach, Lloyd, Leroux||Estadio Municipal; Lagos, Portugal|
|March 2^||Norway||2-1 W||Wambach, Leroux||Estadio Municipal; Lagos, Portugal|
|March 5^||Japan||0-1 L||–||Estadio Algarve; Faro, Portugal|
|March 7^||Sweden||4-0 W||Morgan (3), Wambach||Estadio Bela Vista; Parchal, Portugal|
|April 1**||Japan||1-1 T||Morgan||Yurtec Stadium; Sendai, Japan|
|April 3**||Brazil||7 a.m.||ESPN2, ESPN3||Fukuda Denshi Arena; Chiba, Japan|
* CONCACAF Women’s Olympic Qualifying tournament
^ Algarve Cup
** Kirin Challenge Cup
U.S. ROSTER NOTES:
- U.S. forward Abby Wambach surpassed former U.S. WNT midfielder/forward Shannon MacMillan with her 176th career cap on Sunday against Japan. Wambach moves into sole possession of ninth place in international appearances.
- Alex Morgan contributed her team-leading 12th goal this year in 10 games when she scored in the 73rd minute to earn the USA a 1-1 draw against Japan on Sunday. Morgan has scored in six of her past eight games, tallying 11 goals during that stretch.
- Morgan netted a hat trick to lead the U.S. past Sweden 4-0 on March 7 in the third-place match of the 2012 Algarve Cup. With that effort, Morgan became the 15th player in U.S. history to reach double figures in goals during a calendar year.
- All 23 players on the roster are eligible to play against Brazil, but defender Whitney Engen has been ruled out with an ankle injury. U.S. head coach Pia Sundhage will be allowed six substitutions in the match.
- No one player has played all 990 minutes for the USA so far this year, but team captain Christie Rampone has come close, sitting out just one half while playing 945 minutes.
- When the USA plays Brazil on April 3 in Chiba, defender Stephanie Cox will be celebrating her 26th birthday.
USA VS. BRAZIL SERIES
- The U.S. and Brazil have played each other 28 previous times, with the USA posting a 23-2-3 record. One of those ties included the USA’s dramatic shootout victory at the 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup.
- In that July 10, 2011, match in Dresden, Germany, Abby Wambach netted a late equalizer 122 minutes after the opening kickoff, capitalizing on a pinpoint Megan Rapinoe cross from the left side to level the score at 2-2. The teams then went to a shootout, where the USA found the back of the net on every PK attempt for a 5-3 victory.
- Brazil handed the U.S. WNT its most lopsided loss ever during the 2007 FIFA Women’s World Cup semifinals, posting a 4-0 victory on Sept. 27 at Hangzhou Dragon Stadium in Hangzhou, China. U.S. defender Leslie Osborne scored an own goal in the 20th minute, and Brazil’s offense took care of the rest as Marta netted goals in the 27th and 80th minutes and Cristiane added a 56th-minute tally. The USA had to play the second half shorthanded when Shannon Boxx received a second yellow card in the 46th minute when she tangled with Cristiane from behind.
- The USA has posted five victories against Brazil since that World Cup match – four regulation wins and the 2-2 draw in the 2011 World Cup that resulted in a 5-3 shootout victory.
IN THE RECORD BOOKS
- U.S. Women’s National Team head coach Pia Sundhage surpassed 2008 National Soccer Hall of Fame inductee Anson Dorrance with her 93rd game at the helm as the USA tied Japan 1-1 on Sunday in the Kirin Challenge Cup opener. Dorrance coached the senior team for 92 games from 1986-1994. Sundhage is now 77-6-10 since becoming the U.S. WNT head coach in 2008.
- The U.S. Women’s scoring rate of 4.73 goals per game (52 goals in 11 matches) this year is ahead of any previous pace. The current record is 4.38 goals per game in 1994 (57 goals in 13 games). That 1994 figure does not factor in Norway’s own goal (Aug. 7) and Canada’s own goal (Aug. 21).
- The USA is 85-2-5 all-time when Abby Wambach scores a goal. The most recent of those two losses came in the 2011 Women’s World Cup against Sweden.
- U.S. center back Christie Rampone made her 250th career international appearance during the USA’s 2-1 victory against New Zealand on Feb. 11. Rampone (255 caps) ranks fourth all-time in U.S. WNT history, with Kristine Lilly (352), Mia Hamm (275) and Julie Foudy (271) ranking No. 1 through No. 3.
BY THE NUMBERS:
4: Goals allowed by the U.S. in 11 matches this year
5: Goals scored in a game by Sydney Leroux (Jan. 22, 2012), Amy Rodriguez (Jan. 20, 2012), Abby Wambach (Oct. 23, 2004), Tiffeny Milbrett (Nov. 2, 2002), Michelle Akers (Nov. 24, 1991) and Brandi Chastain (April 18, 1991)
40: U.S. goals in 2011 in 20 total games (this number does not factor in Brazil’s own goal)
52: U.S. goals in 2012 through 11 games
56: The current unbeaten streak for the USA in domestic matches in which they are 50-0-6
194: Players who have earned a cap for the U.S. Women’s National Team since the program’s inception in 1985, the most recent being Whitney Engen, who earned her first cap against Norway at the Algarve Cup on March 4, 2011
237: Goals scored during head coach Pia Sundhage’s 93 games as U.S. WNT head coach
PIA SUNDHAGE FACT FILE: Head coach Pia Sundhage is in the midst of her fourth full year in charge of the U.S. Women’s National Team. Below are some of her accomplishments as a player and coach.
- Sundhage is the sixth official coach and second female coach in the history of the U.S. Women’s National Team program.
- Sundhage’s record as head coach of the Women’s National Team is 77-6-10, with 237 goals for and 47 against.
- As a player, Sundhage was one of the game’s best-ever players, finishing sixth in the voting for FIFA Women’s Player of the Century. A legendary player in Sweden, she played for her country in the 1991 and 1995 Women’s World Cups and 1996 Olympics. She scored four goals for Sweden at the 1991 Women’s World Cup, helping the Swedes to a third-place finish. She scored one goal in the 1995 Women’s World Cup (against Germany) and played every minute of all three matches at the Atlanta Olympics.
- Sundhage started her coaching career while still playing, serving as player-coach for Hammarby from 1992-1994. She also coached Sweden’s Youth National Teams for 11 years from 1990-2001, coaching the U-16s, U-19s and U-21s.
- After her retirement from the international game in 1996, she became head coach of the Sweden Under-19 Women’s National Team, leading the team to one gold medal and two bronze medals at the European Championships. She served as a scout for Sweden during the 1997 European Championships, the 1999 FIFA Women’s World Cup, the 2003 FIFA Women’s World Cup and the 2000 Olympics. Sundhage has also worked for FIFA on its Technical Study Group staff for the 2004 FIFA U-19 Women’s World Championship in Thailand.
- Since taking over as head coach, Sundhage has given 17 players their first senior team caps.
IN FOCUS: BRAZIL
Brazilian Football Confederation (Confederação Brasileira de Futebol)
Founded: 1914 (Joined FIFA in 1923)
Head Coach: Jorge Barcellos
FIFA World Ranking: 4
Best FIFA World Cup Finish: Second Place (2007)
Best Olympics Finish: Second Place (2004, 2008)
BRAZIL ROSTER BY POSITION
GOALKEEPERS (3): Andreia (CBF), Barbara (Fox Cataratas), Thais (Vitoria)
DEFENDERS (6): Aline (FC Rossiyanka), Daiane (San Jose dos Campos), Erika (CBF), Formiga (CBF), Maurine (CBF), Renata (Fox Cataratas)
MIDFIELDERS (6): Beatriz (Vitoria), Ester (FC Rossiyanka), Francielle (San Jose dos Campos), Gabriele (CBF), Maria (Vitoria), Rosana (Olympique Lyonnais)
FORWARDS (3): Cristiane (FC Rossiyanka), Daniele (CBF), Grazielle (America FC)
BRAZIL ROSTER NOTES:
- Marta, the five-time FIFA World Player of the Year (2006-2010), is not on the roster for the Kirin Challenge Cup.
- Brazil defender Daiane was the only player whose penalty kick attempt in the 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup quarterfinals was saved by USA goalkeeper Hope Solo. During regulation of that match, Daiane was responsible for an own goal that gave the U.S. a 1-0 lead in the second minute.
- Brazil’s Cristiane and Formiga, along with USA midfielder Megan Rapinoe, were teammates on the 2010 Chicago Red Stars of Women’s Professional Soccer. Cristiane also was a teammate of Carli Lloyd during the Red Stars’ 2009 WPS season.
- Defender Aline has been Brazil’s captain since 2005. She was a part of Brazil’s silver medal team at the 2004 Olympics in Athens, Greece, but she missed out on the 2008 Beijing Olympics because of a knee injury.
- Jorge Barcellos is in his second stint as the head coach of the Brazil Women’s National Team. Barcellos was appointed to lead the team in November 2011, and he coached the national team from 2006-2008. In between, Barcellos coached St. Louis Athletica in WPS from 2009 to 2010, where he worked with U.S. WNT goalkeeper coach Paul Rogers.
On the field for the USA:
April 1, 2012 – Yurtec Stadium – Sendai, Japan – Women’s Kirin Challenge Cup
USA 1 Alex Morgan 73
Japan 1 Yukari Kinga 32
USA: 1-Hope Solo; 6-Amy LePeilbet, 3-Christie Rampone (capt.), 19-Rachel Buehler, 5-Kelley O’Hara; 12-Lauren Cheney, 7-Shannon Boxx (17-Tobin Heath, 73), 10-Carli Lloyd, 9-Heather O’Reilly (8-Amy Rodriguez, 82), 13-Alex Morgan (11-Sydney Leroux, 82), 20-Abby Wambach
Subs not used: 2-Heather Mitts, 4-Becky Sauerbrunn, 15-Megan Rapinoe, 16-Lori Lindsey, 14-Stephanie Cox, 18-Nicole Barnhart, 21-Ashlyn Harris, 23-Meghan Klingenberg
Head coach: Pia Sundhage
JPN: 1-Ayumi Kaihori; 2-Yukari Kinga, 4-Saki Kumagai, 5-Aya Sameshima (15-Saori Ariyoshi, 67), 14-Asuna Tanaka; 16-Kyoko Yano, 6-Mizuho Sakaguchi (20-Yuika Sugasawa, 86), 8-Aya Miyama (capt.), 9-Nahomi Kawasumi, 11-Shinobu Ohno (13-Rumi Utsugi, 86), 17-Yuki Nagasato (7-Kozue Ando, 61)
Subs not used: 3-Chiaki Minamiyama, 12-Miho Fukumoto, 18-Megumi Kamionobe, 19-Megumi Takase, 21-Manami Nakano, 22-Yuri Kawamura, 23-Kana Osafune, 24-Yumi Uetsuji
Head coach: Norio Sasaki
Vs. Brazil for the USA:
July 10, 2011 – Rudolf-Harbig Stadium – Dresden, Germany – FIFA Women’s World Cup
USA 2 Daiane (own goal) 2; Abby Wambach (120+2)
Brazil 2 Marta 69, 92
Shootout Summary (USA 5, Brazil 3): USA – Boxx (goal), Lloyd (goal), Wambach (goal), Rapinoe (goal), Krieger (goal); BRA – Cristiane (goal), Marta (goal), Daiane (saved), Francielle (goal)
USA : 1-Hope Solo; 11-Ali Krieger, 19-Rachel Buehler, 3-Christie Rampone (capt.), 6-Amy LePeilbet; 9-Heather O’Reilly (17-Tobin Heath, 108), 7-Shannon Boxx, 10-Carli Lloyd, 12-Lauren Cheney (15-Megan Rapinoe, 55); 8-Amy Rodriguez (13-Alex Morgan, 72), 20-Abby Wambach
Subs not used: 2-Heather Mitts, 4-Becky Sauerbrunn, 5-Kelley O’Hara, 14-Stephanie Cox,16-Lori Lindsey, 18-Nicole Barnhart, 21-Jill Loyden
Head coach: Pia Sundhage
BRA : 1-Andreia; 3-Daiane, 4-Aline, 13-Erika; 14-Fabiana, 8-Formiga (5-Renata Costa, 113), 7-Ester, 2-Maurine; 11-Cristiane, 6-Rosana (15-Francielle, 85), 10-Marta
Subs not used: 9-Beatriz, 12-Barbara, 16-Elaine, 17-Daniele, 18-Thais Guedes, 19-Grazielle, 20-Roseane, 21-Thais
Head coach: Kleiton Lima