Women's World Cup 2019: Everything you need to know about Team USA

Brad Smith/ISI Photos / Getty ImagesThe United States celebrates a goal in an international friendly against New Zealand.
  • The United States Women’s National Team opens the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup against Thailand.
  • The US is reigning champions and is seeking its fourth World Cup title.
  • The roster features 23 players, 11 of whom are newcomers, and is filled with experience and depth.
  • Carli Lloyd is the most experienced of the group in the World Cup. She’s played in 18 matches and has scored seven goals.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

The United States Women’s National Team (USWNT) begins its journey to becoming back-to-back FIFA Women’s World Cup champions on Tuesday afternoon with a match against Thailand.

After an early exit from the 2016 Rio Olympics where the team fell in the quarterfinals to Sweden on penalty kicks, the US has gone 39-3-4 since and are one of the teams to beat.

For the first time, the team will have two players who have reached 100 international goals or more in Carli Lloyd and Alex Morgan. The roster focuses around depth and experience at every position, while also featuring 11 newcomers to the World Cup stage.

Below we take you through each member of the US squad and how each can make a mark in this year’s Cup.


Alyssa Naeher

Brad Smith/ISI Photos / Getty ImagesAlyssa Naeher prior to an international friendly between the women’s national teams of the United States and New Zealand.

Position: Goalkeeper.

Age: 31.

International appearances: 46.

International goals: None.

One thing to know: When Hope Solo was dismissed from the national team in 2016, the US needed someone to fill the shoes of its star goalie. Naeher was part of the 2015 team that won the championship, but now she stands as the likely keeper who will be called upon to continue the US’ success in net. She went unbeaten in 15 starts in 2018 and has been a consistent defender.


Ashlyn Harris

Alika Jenner / Getty ImagesAshlyn Harris makes a diving stop during the match against the Seattle Reign FC.

Position: Goalkeeper.

Age: 33.

International appearances: 21.

International goals: None.

One thing to know: Ashlyn Harris was the youngest starting player on the US team that won the inaugural FIFA U-19 Women’s World Championship in Canada in 2002. The veteran is another strong choice for the US in goal.


Adrianna Franch

Icon Sportswire / Getty ImagesPortland Thorns goal keeper Adrianna Franch during the second half of the Portland Thorns 2-1 victory over the Orlando Pride.

Position: Goalkeeper.

Age: 28.

International appearances: 1.

International goals: None.

One thing to know: Adrianna Franch impressed during her performances with the Portland Thorns in the National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL), earning her a spot on the national team at the 2019 SheBelieves Cup, which also gave her her first cap.


Becky Sauerbrunn

Gualter Fatia / Getty ImagesBecky Sauerbrunn in action during the International Friendly match between Portugal and United States.

Position: Defender.

Age: 34.

International appearances: 158.

International goals: None.

One thing to know: Becky Sauerbrunn has cemented herself as a consistent member of US’s backline. She is one of the few players in team history to break the 150-caps mark and played every minute of the team’s 2015 Women’s World Cup campaign.


Kelley O’Hara

Brad Smith/ISI Photos / Getty ImagesKelley O’Hara during an international friendly between the United States and New Zealand.

Position: Defender.

Age: 30.

International appearances: 118.

International goals: 2.

One thing to know: Known for her energetic and aggressive play, Kelley O’Hara is a great defender on the wings and helped the US earn its berth to France 2019 in the CONCACAF Women’s Championship.


Abby Dahlkemper

Mike Ehrmann / Getty ImagesAbby Dahlkemper of the USA kicks the ball in the first half against Brazil during the SheBelieves Cup.

Position: Defender.

Age: 26.

International appearances: 40.

International goals: None.

One thing to know: Abby Dahlkemper cemented herself as a starting center back and started all five of the US’s CONCACAF Women’s Championship games to help the team qualify for France 2019.


Ali Krieger

Brad Smith/ISI Photos / Getty ImagesAli Krieger during an international friendly between the United States and New Zealand.

Position: Defender.

Age: 34.

International appearances: 100.

International goals: 1.

One thing to know: Ali Kreiger has played for clubs in Germany, Sweden, and the US, making her one of the most experienced players on the team. She was a member of the 2015 team and is best as a center or right back.


Tierna Davidson

Meg Oliphant / Getty ImagesTierna Davidson handles the ball in the game against Belgium.

Position: Defender.

Age: 20.

International appearances: 20.

International goals: 1.

One thing to know: Tierna Davidson was the No. 1 pick in the 2019 NWSL draft by the Chicago Red Stars. The youngest player on this US squad, Davidson will be making her senior Women’s World Cup debut at France 2019.


Emily Sonnett

NurPhoto / Getty ImagesEmily Sonnett during the friendly match against Spain.

Position: Defender.

Age: 25.

International appearances: 33.

International goals: None.

One thing to know: Emily Sonnett has progressively worked her way up since her international debut during the US team’s post-Women’s World Cup 2015 Victory Tour. She is someone to look for on the backline as a prospect for the future.


Crystal Dunn

Elsa / Getty ImagesCrystal Dunn passes the ball in the second half against New Zealand.

Position: Defender.

Age: 26.

International appearances: 85.

International goals: 24.

One thing to know: Crystal Dunn is primarily a defender, but provides a lot of versatility to this USA team with her ability to also play as a winger or striker. She will be making her Women’s World Cup debut after missing out on the 2015 roster.


Samantha Mewis

Elsa / Getty ImagesSamantha Mewis takes the ball in the second half against New Zealand.

Position: Midfielder.

Age: 26.

International appearances: 50.

International goals: 12.

One thing to know: Samantha Mewis is one of the tallest players on the USA team at six feet. She is a ball-winning force, known for her winning mentality. Mewis was selected as an alternate for the 2016 US Olympic team but has since elevated her game and scored a goal during the CONCACAF’s qualification tournament.


Morgan Brian

Icon Sportswire / Getty ImagesMorgan Brian handles the ball during an international friendly soccer match with China.

Position: Midfielder.

Age: 26.

International appearances: 82.

International goals: 6.

One thing to know: While Morgan Brian isn’t an anticipated starter, she can be a difference maker off the bench if needed. She’s best known for her range of passing and vision from deep midfield, which was what helped her shine in Canada in 2015.


Julie Ertz

NurPhoto / Getty ImagesJulie Ertz during the friendly match with Spain.

Position: Midfielder.

Age: 27.

International appearances: 82.

International goals: 18.

One thing to know: Julie Ertz is the heart of team USA’s midfield. Primarily a defensive midfielder, she is also an offensive threat as a consistent scorer and is expected to be an impactful force for the team in France.


Lindsey Horan

Gualter Fatia / Getty ImagesLindsey Horan during an International Friendly match with Portugal.

Position: Midfielder.

Age: 25.

International appearances: 68.

International goals: 8.

One thing to know: Considered to be one of the most technically-gifted players on this US team, Lindsey Horan is the critical link between the defence and offence. She played for Paris-Saint Germain for four years from 2012 to 2016, making France familiar territory as she gets ready to play there again.


Rose Lavelle

Soccrates Images / Getty ImagesRose Lavelle during the International Friendly Women match with Portugal.

Position: Midfielder.

Age: 24.

International appearances: 27.

International goals: 7.

One thing to know: Rose Lavelle scored three goals and had an assist while playing in all five matches of the CONCACAF Women’s Championship. A talented passer and dribbler, she will be making her Women’s World Cup debut.


Allie Long

Icon Sportswire / Getty ImagesAllie Long dribbles the ball in game action during an international friendly match with New Zealand.

Position: Midfielder.

Age: 31.

International appearances: 45.

International goals: 6.

One thing to know: Allie Long was a surprise selection for the team due to limited call-ups and knee trouble, but she is expected to bring versatility with her high passing percentages and experience. Long was a member of the Rio 2016 Olympic team after her performance with the Portland Thorns.


Mallory Pugh

Elsa / Getty ImagesMallory Pugh passes the ball in the second half against Mexico.

Position: Forward.

Age: 21.

International appearances: 53.

International goals: 16.

One thing to know: By the time Mallory Pugh was 18 she had competed in two U-20 Women’s World Cups and the 2016 Olympic Games. A young and talented member of this US team, Pugh is one of FIFA.com’s five young players to watch in France 2019.


Ira L. Black – Corbis / Getty ImagesCaptain Carli Lloyd holds up her arms to celebrate scoring a goal in the 2nd half of the during the International Friendly match against Mexico.

Position: Forward.

Age: 36.

International appearances: 274.

International goals: 110.

One thing to know: Carli Lloyd returns after a star performance in the 2015 Women’s World Cup for what will most likely be her last world finals. Lloyd has transitioned from midfielder to forward and will mainly be coming off the bench, especially in high-pressure situations.


Alex Morgan

Ira L. Black – Corbis / Getty ImagesTeam Captain Alex Morgan of United States during the International Friendly match the U.S. Women’s National Team and Mexico.

Position: Forward.

Age: 29.

International appearances: 163.

International goals: 101.

One thing to know: One of the best forwards in the world, Alex Morgan has proved herself to be one of the best scorers in US history. She became the third youngest player and fourth fastest player to score her 100th career USWNT goal earlier in 2019.


Megan Rapinoe

Justin Edmonds / Getty ImagesMegan Rapinoe in action during an international friendly against Australia.

Position: Forward.

Age: 33.

International appearances: 153.

International goals: 44.

One thing to know: Megan Rapinoe has provided consistency and strength from the left wing as both a goalscorer and opportunity creator. A fearless leader on and off the field, Rapinoe plays a crucial role with her skills and vision for the game.


Tobin Heath

Ira L. Black – Corbis / Getty ImagesTobin Heath runs on the pitch during the International Friendly match with Mexico.

Position: Forward.

Age: 31.

International appearances: 150.

International goals: 30.

One thing to know: Tobin Heath returns to the Women’s World Cup stage for the third time in her career. One of the finest dribblers in the game, Heath scored a goal in the dramatic 5-2 final victory over Japan in 2015.


Jessica McDonald

Soccrates Images / Getty ImagesJessica McDonald during the International Friendly Women match against Portugal.

Position: Forward.

Age: 31.

International appearances: 7.

International goals: 2.

One thing to know: Jessica McDonald is a quality scorer with an ability to put assists on the board, but what she represents for this US team goes beyond the field. A mother to her seven-year-old son, McDonald has utilised her opportunity to represent mothers who aim to balance professional careers with motherhood.


Christen Press

Meg Oliphant / Getty ImagesForward Christen Press handles the ball in the game against Belgium.

Position: Forward.

Age: 30.

International appearances: 116.

International goals: 48.

One thing to know: Christen Press is expected to be an impact player off the bench who can provide a spark on the attack. By entering the game when the opposing defence is tired, Press’ versatility on the field is a dangerous tool for the US that can come up big when needed.


Jill Ellis

Position: Head Coach.

Age: 52.

One thing to know: Jill Ellis became the head coach in May 2014 and is the first American woman to lead the U.S. to a FIFA World Cup title. The opener against Thailand will mark her 121st game, tying her for second all-time in most games coached with Tony DiCicco.

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