Julie Johnston, Alyssa Naeher, Christen Press named to United States Women’s National Team for September matches.
CHICAGO – U.S. Women’s National Team head coach Jill Ellis has named 21 players to the roster ahead of matches against Thailand on Sept. 15 at MAPFRE Stadium in Columbus, Ohio (8 p.m. ET on ESPN2) and on Sept. 18 against the Netherlands (7 p.m. ET on FS1) at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta.
The USA’s meeting with Thailand, the first in the history of the programs, will mark the final game in a U.S. uniform for veteran midfielder Heather O’Reilly, who announced her retirement from international soccer last week. It will be O’Reilly’s 231st appearance in a U.S. career that began as a 17-year-old in 2002. She will be honored before the match in which she will serve as captain.
Eighteen-year-old Mallory Pugh, who became the youngest American to score in the Olympics when she tallied against Colombia on Aug. 9, will not be available to play against Thailand as she is training with the U.S. Under-20 Women’s National Team in Los Angeles. Pugh will be in Atlanta and available for selection against the Netherlands.
“We are really looking forward to both of these matches,” Ellis said. “These first two games will all be players who were at the Olympics and then in October, we’ll really start to focus on the new cycle. One of the most important things in this first game against Thailand is to celebrate Heather O’Reilly’s wonderful career and honor her with a send-off befitting her tremendous contribution to our program. I am certain the fans and our players and will make sure it’s a very special day.”
The USA has three players that hail from Georgia in 2012 Olympic gold medalist, 2015 Women’s World Cup champion and 2016 Olympian Kelley O’Hara (Fayetteville, Ga.), 2016 Olympic alternate Emily Sonnett (Marietta) and 2015 Women’s World Cup champion and 2016 Olympian Morgan Brian (St. Simons Island).
In Central Ohio, tickets for the game in Columbus are also available at all Ticketmaster ticket centers (including many Kroger stores), as well as the MAPFRE Stadium ticket office (open Monday-Friday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.). In the Atlanta area, tickets for the match in Georgia are also available at all Ticketmaster ticket centers (including most Walmart locations) as well as the Georgia Dome ticket office (open Monday-Friday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.).
U.S. Women’s National Team Roster by Position
GOALKEEPERS (2): Ashlyn Harris (Orlando Pride), Alyssa Naeher (Chicago Red Stars)
DEFENDERS (7): Whitney Engen (Boston Breakers), Julie Johnston (Chicago Red Stars), Meghan Klingenberg (Portland Thorns FC), Ali Krieger (Washington Spirit), Kelley O’Hara (Sky Blue FC), Becky Sauerbrunn (FC Kansas City), Emily Sonnett (Portland Thorns FC)
MIDFIELDERS (8): Morgan Brian (Houston Dash), Tobin Heath (Portland Thorns FC), Lindsey Horan (Portland Thorns FC), Carli Lloyd (Houston Dash), Allie Long (Portland Thorns FC), Samantha Mewis (Western New York Flash), Heather O’Reilly (FC Kansas City), Megan Rapinoe (Seattle Reign FC)
FORWARDS (4): Crystal Dunn (Washington Spirit), Alex Morgan (Orlando Pride), Christen Press (Chicago Red Stars), Mallory Pugh (Real Colorado)
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