Photo by Riccardo Savi/Getty Images for Concordia Summit

USWNT brings Mother Teresa, Jennifer Lawrence under same tent with jersey tribute

1 Comment

Don’t look twice when you see the name “Wambach” on the back of Alex Morgan’s jersey today at the SheBelieves Cup.

The United States women’s national team will be paying homage to iconic women on their jerseys Saturday against England.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

While Morgan (Wambach), Sam Mewis (Mia Hamm), and Adrianna Franch (Brianna Scurry) honor their USWNT predecessors, others are going off the board.

In some cases, way off the board.

Goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris will carry rapper Cardi B’s name on her back, a musician seven years her junior.

McCall Zerboni has opted for Mother Teresa, Christen Press for Sojourner Truth, and Becky Sauerbrunn is shouting out RBG — Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

Full list:

No. PLAYER INSPIRATION

7

Abby Dahlkemper Jennifer Lawrence
Kelley O’Hara Heather O’Reilly

12

Tierna Davidson Sally Ride

19

Crystal Dunn Serena Williams

8

Julie Ertz Carrie Underwood

22

Emily Fox Elena Delle Donne

21

Adrianna Franch Briana Scurry

18

Ashlyn Harris Cardi B

17

Tobin Heath Doris Burke

16

Rose Lavelle J.K. Rowling

10

Carli Lloyd Malala Yousafzai

20

Jessica McDonald Maya Angelou

3

Samantha Mewis Mia Hamm

13

Alex Morgan Abby Wambach

1

Alyssa Naeher Robin Roberts

23

Christen Press Sojourner Truth

11

Mallory Pugh Beyoncé

15

Megan Rapinoe Audre Lorde

4

Becky Sauerbrunn Ruth Bader Ginsburg

14

Casey Short Katie Sowers

2

Emily Sonnett Tina Fey

6

Andi Sullivan Jessica Mendoza

25

McCall Zerboni Mother Teresa

SheBelieves Cup: Gorgeous goals dot opening matches; USWNT draws (video)

Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images
Leave a comment

The United States women’s national team began its search for a third SheBelieves Cup title in four tries with a draw versus tournament debutantes Japan.

[ RECAP: Liverpool 5-0 Watford ]

The other match saw England rebound from an early Brazil penalty to set up a pivotal second match with the USWNT.

USWNT 2-2 Japan

Yuka Momiki’s stoppage time marker was the second time the USWNT conceded a lead on Wednesday in Chester, Pennsylvania.

Alex Morgan scored a late goal after Emi Nakajima tied the match after halftime.

Morgan used her chest to redirect a Christen Press cross home with a 76th minute marker.

Unfortunately for the USWNT, a deft bit of Japanese footwork turned their back line and goalkeeper into a puddle on Momiki’s stoppage time equalizer.

But the first goal…

Tobin Heath got the ball on the right wing and dribbled Saori Ariyoshi into a face plant, cueing up Megan Rapinoe for her 42nd international goal and giving Japan a welcome in its first ever SheBelieves Cup match.

England 2-1 Brazil

If you’re going to score a late winner for your country, might as well make it a worldie.

Arsenal forward Beth Mead hit this vicious strike to complete England’s comeback from a halftime deficit and send Brazil into the loss column.

England faces the USWNT next, while Brazil will meet Japan.

U.S. Soccer announces Player of the Year nominees

Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images
Leave a comment

The USMNT’s 2018 Player of the Year is going to be one of the new breed, while the USWNT’s list of nominees is a bit unusual as well.

Tyler Adams, Weston McKennie, Matt Miazga, Zack Steffen and Wil Trapp are the men vying to become the fifth different name to win the Male Player of the Year in as many seasons.

[ USMNT: Player ratings | 3 things ]

There are three players on the Female list to have won the award in previous years with Julie Ertz, Tobin Heath, and Alex Morgan having laid claim to the honor. Megan Rapinoe and Lindsey Horan are the other two nominees.

The two teams could hardly have had more different years, as the USWNT was undefeated behind a prolific season from Morgan.

The men stalled as U.S. Soccer failed to enlist a full-time coach, leaving interim coach Dave Sarachan to meld new players into a “part-time” system.

Steffen is probably the favorite to win the men’s award, though Miazga and McKennie had some high-profile moments in red, white, and blue. Trapp is beloved by the staff and could grab the award as well, while Adams seems a true long shot.

USWNT takes care of Scotland 1-0 on Morgan strike

Getty Images
Leave a comment

Alex Morgan scored her 98th international goal just before halftime as the United States women downed Scotland 1-0 in a friendly in Paisley, Scotland on Tuesday. It wasn’t the prettiest performance the U.S. has put forth this year by a longshot, but they got the job done despite a Carli Lloyd missed penalty. The win completed an undefeated 2018 for the U.S. women, a fabulous feat on the whole.

The United States was dominant throughout the opening 45 minutes, controlling 70% possession and holding the hosts to just a single shot. Morgan struck four minutes before the break as Mallory Pugh sent in a deep cross from the right flank that sailed just over the head of a leaping Lloyd but dipped right to Morgan unmarked at the far post. The 29-year-old finished with a powerful volley, connecting with the ball mid-flight and rocketing it inside the right post.

The goal is Morgan’s 18th of the season and 25th goal over her last 26 international matches. Otherwise, the United States held the possessional advantage but struggled to produce too many clear-cut chances. That changed after halftime.

The US came incredibly close to a second in the 53rd minute as Julie Ertz trailing the play received a layoff from Morgan, and while her effort deflected off a defender, it was saved wonderfully by halftime substitute Shannon Lynn who managed to get her leg up to block the deflection despite laying out for the initial shot.

The visitors were awarded a penalty in the 62nd minute as Kirsty Smith clipped the toes of Pugh in the box, and Lloyd took the spot-kick, smashing it against the crossbar and out of play with Lynn right there looking on, having guessed correctly.

Scotland had its best chance of the evening in the 75th minute as they won the ball in the attacking third and charged forward to Erin Cuthbert. She charged forward splitting U.S. defenders, but eventually the ball was cleared by Becky Sauerbrunn after a heavy touch by Cuthbert as she looked to take aim on the doorstep. They would get another good look five minutes ltaer as Julie Ertz was caught out by a wonderful chipped ball over the top toLana Clelland who rifled on net, but the shot was turned wide by Ashlyn Harris.

That was it for the game as both teams brought on late subs, but no more big chances were created. The victory is the 18th of the season for the United States, going a full calendar year without a loss through its 20 total games. The USWNT also extended its clean sheet streak to a whopping 884 minutes, extending nine full shutout matches, the longest streak since 2004/05 when they went 10 straight matches.

For Scotland, the defeat snaps a five-game winning streak that dates back to an April 5th loss to Switzerland in World Cup qualifying.

Lavelle goal leads USWNT to CONCACAF Championship

Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images
2 Comments

Rose Lavelle’s early goal was enough for the United States women’s national team to seal its eighth CONCACAF Women’s Championship with a 2-0 win over Canada in Texas on Wednesday.

Alex Morgan scored an offside goal in stoppage time, a deserved marker despite the captain’s transgression. The dominant striker has 17 of her 97 national team goals in 2018.

[ MLS: Rooney scores another wonderful goal ]

Both sides had already clinched berths in this summer’s World Cup in France, while Jamaica earned a spot via a third place match win over Panama earlier Wednesday.

The USWNT is 15W-2D in 2018 and in fine form heading into a World Cup year. The last loss came in the 2017 Tournament of Nations.

The game was vicious, with Tobin Heath the target for a number of hard Canadian fouls and Megan Rapinoe responding on behalf of the Americans.

“Obviously, we hate Canada and they hate us,” Rapinoe said after the game on Fox Soccer. “It was very apparent tonight.”

Lavelle sent a second minute loose ball just past the reach of Canadian goalkeeper Stephanie Labbe.