USWNT set to close out two-game series against Ireland in St. Louis
After a 2-0 win over the Republic of Ireland on April 8 in Austin, the U.S. Women’s National Team will finish the April International window on Tuesday, April 11, with a match against the Irish at newly-opened CITYPARK in St. Louis, Mo. (6:30 p.m. CT / 7:30 p.m. ET on HBO Max, Universo and Peacock).
In the first of the two games between the teams, defender Emily Fox scored her first career goal in the 37th minute and midfielder Lindsey Horan converted from the penalty spot in the 80th to lift the USA to its sixth victory in six games in 2023. The match against Ireland, which qualified for its first ever FIFA Women’s World Cup, was hard fought and emotional, as forward Mallory Swanson was forced to leave the game late in the first half after tearing the patella tendon in her left knee. She has been replaced on the USA roster by 18-year-old forward Alyssa Thompson.
Tuesday’s game in St. Louis will be the final match for the USA in before head coach Vlatko Andonovski and his staff will select the 23-player roster for the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup. The four-time World Cup champions USA will kick off the World Cup campaign in just over 100 days in Auckland/Tāmaki Makaurau, New Zealand, taking on Vietnam in its opening match of the group stage (July 22 at 1 p.m. NZT / July 21 at 9 p.m. ET).
USWNT DETAILED ROSTER BY POSITION (CLUB; CAPS/GOALS)
GOALKEEPERS (3): Adrianna Franch (Kansas City Current; 10), Casey Murphy (North Carolina Courage; 13), Alyssa Naeher (Chicago Red Stars; 90)
DEFENDERS (10): Alana Cook (OL Reign; 23/0), Tierna Davidson (Chicago Red Stars; 48/1), Emily Fox (North Carolina Courage; 28/1), Crystal Dunn (Portland Thorns FC; 131/24), Naomi Girma (San Diego Wave FC; 15/0), Sofia Huerta (OL Reign; 28/0), Casey Krueger (Chicago Red Stars; 37/0), Kelley O’Hara (NJ/NY Gotham FC; 156/3), Becky Sauerbrunn (Portland Thorns FC; 215/0), Emily Sonnett (OL Reign; 74/1)
MIDFIELDERS (7): Julie Ertz (Unattached; 117/20), Lindsey Horan (Olympique Lyon, FRA; 127/27), Taylor Kornieck (San Diego Wave FC; 12/2), Rose Lavelle (OL Reign; 88/24), Kristie Mewis (NJ/NY Gotham FC; 50/7), Ashley Sanchez (Washington Spirit; 23/3), Andi Sullivan (Washington Spirit; 43/3)
FORWARDS (6): Ashley Hatch (Washington Spirit; 18/5), Alex Morgan (San Diego Wave FC; 205/121), Trinity Rodman (Washington Spirit; 16/2), Sophia Smith (Portland Thorns FC; 28/12), Alyssa Thompson (Angel City FC; 2/0), Lynn Williams (NJ/NY Gotham FC; 52/15)
On March 28, Andonovski announced the 26-player roster for the April Training Camp and matches against Ireland, where 23 players will be selected to suit up for each match. This roster features 21 of the 23 players who helped the USA to victory at the 2023 SheBelieves Cup as well as the return of five players following extended absences. Forward Sophia Smith, the 2022 BioSteel U.S. Soccer Female Player of the Year and 2022 NWSL MVP, returned after missing the first two USWNT events of the year due to injury while two-time World Cup champion Julie Ertz returned for her first action since the Tokyo Olympics in 2021 and after giving birth to her first child, a son, in August of 2022. Olympian Casey Krueger is in her first USWNT camp since October of 2021 after giving birth to her first child, also a boy, in July of 2022. Veteran defender and two-time World Cup winner Kelley O’Hara also returns from injury after not playing for the USA since last summer and fellow World Cup champion defender Tierna Davidson trained with the USWNT before the 2023 SheBelieves Cup in her first action since recovering from ACL surgery.
On April 9, it was announced that forward Alyssa Thompson would replace Mallory Swanson on the USWNT’s training camp roster prior to the match in St. Louis. Swanson suffered a torn patella tendon in her left knee near the end of the first half of the USA’s April 8 win in Austin and has since returned to her club market of Chicago for further evaluation.
FANTASTIC MS. FOX
A mainstay on the U.S. backline this cycle, Emily Fox scored her first international goal in Saturday’s win in Austin, scoring off a right-footed blast from outside the box in the 37th minute. Fox became the 116th player all-time to score for the USWNT as well as the seventh different player and first defender to score for the USA in 2023. Fox leads the USWNT in total minutes played in 2023 with 495 minutes of action and was the only U.S. player to play the full 270 minutes at the 2023 SheBelieves Cup.
Fox has played in 24 of the USA’s 28 matches since the October 2021 FIFA window, making 12 starts during that span. Despite missing time due to COVID protocols and injury, Fox is fourth on the team in total games played since the 2021 Olympics with 24 appearances.
ERTZ RETURNS TO ACTION
When Julie Ertz came on for Andi Sullivan in the 67th minute in Austin, it marked her 117th cap all-time for the USA and her first in 611 days, last appearing for the USA in the bronze medal match of the Tokyo Olympics on Aug. 5, 2021. Ertz, who was honored for her 100th cap, which she earned against England on March 5, 2020, before kickoff in Austin, played 24 minutes as she became the 15th woman to play for the USWNT after becoming a mother, having given birth to her son in August of 2022.
Ertz is one of five mothers – an unofficial USWNT team record – in this camp. Alex Morgan, Crystal Dunn, Adrianna Franch and Casey Krueger are the others.
BACK IN STL FOR BECKY200
Team captain and St. Louis native Becky Sauerbrunn will be honored before Tuesday’s game in St. Louis for her 200th cap, which she earned on Feb. 17, 2022, against the Czech Republic. Sauerbrunn, who now has 215 caps, became just the 12th player in USWNT history to play 200 or more times. She is only the fourth defender to hit 200 caps, and just the second to almost exclusively have earned every cap on the back line, joining USWNT General Manager Kate Markgraf.
Sauerbrunn is one of just five players on this roster who was a part of both the USA’s 2015 and 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup championships and also won gold at the 2012 Olympics in London. She currently ranks ninth all-time in USWNT history in both caps (215) and minutes played (16,656).
SUCCESS IN THE SHOW-ME STATE
Tuesday’s game in St. Louis will be the USA’s sixth game all-time in St. Louis and 10th in the state of Missouri. The USA is unbeaten in its previous nine games in the Show-Me State, boasting a record of nine wins, three draws and zero losses.
The USWNT’s previous games in St. Louis were played at the St. Louis Soccer Park (1996 & 1998), the Edward Jones Dome (2007) and Busch Stadium (2015 and 2019). The matches at Busch Stadium were also among the final matches for the USA before departing for the World Cups in those respective years.
INSIDE THE SERIES: USA VS. IRELAND
Tuesday’s matchup in St. Louis will be the 15th meeting all-time between the USA and the Republic of Ireland. Prior to Saturday’s game in Austin, the teams last played on August 3, 2019, at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California in the USWNT’s first match after winning the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup. Played in front of a crowd of over 37,000 fans at the site of the historic 1999 Women’s World Cup final, the USA topped Ireland in that match 3-0 led by goals from Lindsey Horan, Carli Lloyd and Tobin Heath.
Overall, the USA leads the series against the Irish 14-0-0 and has scored five or more goals in seven of the 14 previous meetings. Morgan has scored in three of her previous four appearances against Ireland, tallying five goals in those games include a hat trick in her first match against the Irish in 2012. Horan now has two career goals against Ireland while Ertz and Fox have one each.
COUNTDOWN TO DOWN UNDER
In just over 100 days, the U.S. Women’s National Team will play its first match at the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup, facing World Cup debutant Vietnam, 2019 World Cup runner-up the Netherlands and Portugal in Group E. The 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup will take place from July 20-Aug. 20 in 10 stadiums and nine host cities, five in Australia and four in New Zealand.
The USA will play the entirety of the group stage in New Zealand. The U.S. will open Group E play against Vietnam on July 22 at Eden Park in Auckland/Tāmaki Makaurau (1 p.m. local / 9 p.m. ET on July 21), which will also serve as the host venue for the Opening Ceremony of the 2023 World Cup on July 20 when New Zealand plays Norway. The USA then faces Netherlands on July 27 at Wellington Regional Stadium in Wellington/Te Whanganui-a-Tara (1 p.m. local / 9 p.m. ET on July 26), followed by Portugal on Aug. 1 at Eden Park in Auckland/Tāmaki Makaurau (7 p.m. local / 3 a.m. ET).
USA ROSTER NOTES
- The most capped player on this roster is Becky Sauerbrunn at 215, followed by Alex Morgan (205), Kelley O’Hara (156), Crystal Dunn (131), Lindsey Horan (127) and Julie Ertz (117).
- The least capped players are Trinity Rodman (16), Naomi Girma (15), Casey Murphy (13), Taylor Kornieck (12), Adrianna Franch (10) and Alyssa Thompson (2).
- Eleven of the 26 players on this roster were a part of the USA’s 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup championship – Sauerbrunn, Morgan, O’Hara, Dunn, Horan, Ertz, Alyssa Naeher, Rose Lavelle, Emily Sonnett, Tierna Davidson and Franch.
- Morgan is the top scorer on the roster in international play with 121 goals. Horan has 27, Dunn and Lavelle each have 24 and Ertz has 20.
- Eight different players have scored for the USA so far in 2023, led by seven goals from Swanson, two goals from Lavelle and Morgan, and one goal each from Lynn Williams, Ashley Hatch, Taylor Kornieck, Emily Fox and Lindsey Horan.
- Emily Fox, who played all 270 minutes of the 2023 SheBelieves Cup, leads the team in total minutes played with 495 minutes of action. Horan is second with 434 minutes of play.
- Twelve of the USA’s 16 goals this year have been assisted, with seven different players tallying an assist in 2023. Lavelle land Trinity Rodman lead the way with three assists each, followed by two from Morgan, and one each from Ashley Sanchez, Sofia Huerta, Lynn Williams and Andi Sullivan.
- Twelve players have been directly involved in a goal this year with either a goal or an assist, led by Swanson’s seven goals. Lavelle is second with five total goal involvements (two goals and three assists) followed by Morgan with four goal involvements (two goals and two assists) and Rodman with three, all assists.
- The USA has recorded five shutouts in six games so far in 2023, including four consecutive clean sheets to open the year. The lone goal the USA has allowed came against Brazil in the 90th minute of the SheBelieves Cup finale. Alyssa Naeher has three shutouts on the year while Casey Murphy has two.
- Head coach Vlatko Andonovski is 48W-5L-6D in 59 games with the USWNT, 39 of which have been at home and 25 coming against teams ranked in the top-13 in the world.
IN FOCUS: REPUBLIC OF IRELAND | FIVE THINGS TO KNOW
FIFA World Ranking: 22
UEFA Ranking: 15
World Cup Appearances: 0 (Making debut in 2023)
Best World Cup Finish: N/A
Record vs. USA (W-D-L): 0W-0D-14L
Last Meeting vs. USA: April 8, 2023 (2-0 win for USA in Austin, TX)
Head Coach: Vera Pauw (NED)
IRELAND DETAILED ROSTER BY POSITION
GOALKEEPERS (4):Courtney Brosnan (Everton F.C.), Grace Moloney (Reading F.C.), Megan Walsh (Brighton & Hove Albion F.C.), Sophie Whitehouse (Lewes F.C.)
DEFENDERS (9):Harriet Scott (Birmingham City F.C.), Jessie Stapleton (Shelbourne F.C.), Louise Quinn (Birmingham City F.C.), Aoife Mannion (Manchester United F.C.), Diane Caldwell (Reading F.C.), Claire O’Riordan (Celtic F.C.), Hayley Nolan (London City Lionesses), Tara O’Hanlon (Peamount United), Áine O’Gorman (Shamrock Rovers)
MIDFIELDERS (9):Katie McCabe (Arsenal F.C.), Denise O’Sullivan (North Carolina Courage), Megan Connolly (Brighton & Hove Albion F.C.), Jamie Finn (Birmingham City F.C.), Ruesha Littlejohn (Aston Villa F.C.), Lucy Quinn (Birmingham City FC, ENG), Ciara Grant (Hearts), Roma McLaughlin (Fortuna Hjorring), Sinead Farrelly (NY/NJ Gotham FC)
FORWARDS (6):Heather Payne (Florida State University), Abbie Larkin (Shamrock Rovers), Amber Barrett (FFC Potsdam Turbine), Kyra Carusa (London City Lionesses), Marissa Sheva (Washington Spirit), Alannah McEvoy (Shamrock Rovers)
REPUBLIC OF IRELAND ROSTER NOTES
- Ireland qualified for the 2023 Women’s World Cup – its first – in dramatic fashion. After finishing second in UEFA Women’s World Cup Qualifying Group A behind Sweden, Ireland met rival Scotland in a one-game World Cup playoff at the famed Hampden Park in Glasgow. In front of more than 10,000 fans, a highly emotional goal in 72nd minute from Amber Barrett, who plays in Germany for Turbine Potsdam, sent The Girls in Green to Australia and New Zealand.
- Goalkeeper Courtney Brosnan, who made several excellent saves in the April 8 game against the USA, saved a penalty kick by Scotland’s Caroline Weir in the 12th minute.
- In Group A, Ireland drew with Sweden and Slovakia, but its only loss was to Sweden, by a 1-0 score, and they won all the rest of their matches as Arsenal’s Katie McCabe leading all Group scorers with seven goals. Denise O’Sullivan of the NC Courage had six. Megan Connolly and Louise Quinn had two goals each in qualifying.
- Ireland’s roster is mixture of experience with a splash of younger players. Six players have 68 caps or more with veteran Aine O’Gorman leading the way with 116, followed by Quinn with 102 and O’Sullivan, who earned her 100th cap against the USA in Austin.
- On the flip side, 18 players have 23 caps or less including four players with one cap and two who are looking to make their international debuts.
- One of the less experienced players is Washington Spirit forward Marissa Sheva, who hails from Sellersville, Pa. and played college soccer at Penn State. She initially signed with the Utah Royals in 2020 before making her way to the Spirit via a short stint in Spain.
- The most experienced Irish players are in the back and the midfielder with Reading F.C. defender Diane Caldwell (94 caps), the six-foot Quinn (102 caps with 15 goals) and O’Gorman (116 with caps with 13 goals) leading the way. The well-traveled Caldwell, who played college soccer at Hofstra, played in seven games for the North Carolina Courage in 2021 among her seven different professional club stops, the longest of which were in Norway and Germany.
- In addition to McCabe (71 caps), and O’Sullivan (100), Megan Connolly (37 caps/4 goals) and Ruesha Littlejohn (69/6) bring experience to the Irish midfielder.
- Connolly, who played college soccer at Florida State where she was the ACC Midfielder of the Year, ACC Defender of the Year and was a First-Team All-American.
- Forward Heather Payne currently plays college soccer for Florida State where she has six career goals and seven assist over four seasons in a career that was impacted by the global pandemic. She helped FSU win the NCAA title in 2021.
- Forward Kyra Carusa was born in San Diego and played collegiate soccer at Stanford and Georgetown. Carusa played three seasons at Stanford and helped the Cardinal win the 2017 NCAA Championship while playing alongside current USWNT call-ups Tierna Davidson, Alana Cook and Andi Sullivan. Her maternal grandparents emigrated to the USA in the 1950s.
- For a long time, Ireland had a world class goalkeeper in Emma Byrne who amassed well over 100 caps for her country, but the current starter is Everton F.C.’s Brosnan, who has 20 caps. The 5-foot-9 Brosnan is an American who hails from Far Hills, N.J. and played her college soccer at Syracuse where she played in 67 matches. Brosnan saw some training time with the U.S. U-23 WNT before changing associations.