Jill Ellis should have the United States women’s national team well-drilled in its bid to reclaim the World Cup, announcing its warm-up schedule two days before Saturday’s WWC draw in France.
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Beginning next month, the USWNT will play 10 matches across two continents as Ellis attempts to become the first manager to lead the Americans to consecutive World Cup wins.
Only two of those matches are outside the U.S., with the USWNT visiting France and Spain on Jan. 19 and 22, respectively.
The Yanks will then get experience defending a trophy when they host the SheBelievesCup between Feb. 27-March 5, playing Japan in Chester, Penn., England in Nashville, and Brazil in Tampa.
April friendlies follow against Australia in Colorado (April 4) and Belgium at LAFC’s Banc of California Stadium, before the 3-match Send-Off Series sees the USWNT host South Africa in Santa Clara, a TBD opponent in St. Louis, and Mexico at Red Bull Arena between May 12-26.
The USWNT is set to defend the World Cup for the first time since 2003 this summer in France when it bids to become the first team to win four Women’s World Cup tournaments (It is already the first to win three).
They’ve placed at every WWC, finishing first three times, second once, and third on three occasions.