Jill Ellis named a 23 woman roster for a pair of April friendlies against Colombia. The first game on April 6 match at Pratt & Whitney Stadium in East Hartford (7 p.m. on FS1) while the second game on April 10 at Talen Energy Stadium in Chester, Pennsylvania. (2 p.m. ET. on ESPN).
Some quick thoughts on the roster:
Goalkeepers are the only position with consistency
Outside of Adrianna Franch’s call up to the January camp these three goalkeepers have been the solo call ups for over a year at this point. One has to be dropped from the roster for Rio. With limited minutes for both Harris and Naeher it’s hard to guess which it will be.
Ellis is using “free money” to fill out the defence
All eight players on the defensive side of the ball are on full year contracts with U.S. Soccer. It’s not a shock to see Hinkle called back up even with her limited play time since January if U.S. Soccer is already paying her. It also makes it hard to predict if either Engen or Sonnett will be dropped for Rio.
Curious timing for Long
After more than a year off of the roster for the United States Women’s National Team, Allie Long is getting a curiously timed call up. Ellis has had over 6 months of friendlies and camps to call up Long. Does she have her 18 set and just seeing what the NWSL talent has to offer with calls for both Long and Lauren Barnes, called up for the She Believes Cup, or is she looking for another option in the midfield?
Another 17 year old forward
Getting a call for this set of friendlies is Ashley Sanchez. The 17 year old is a U20 player who has scored some nice goals for the Baby Nats. But as with Long the timing of her call up could be seen as questionable.
No Christie Rampone
Not seeing Christie Rampone on the roster, assuming she’s healthy after playing in preseason games for Sky Blue FC, could very well mean we’ve seen the last of the formor national team captain. She might be brought back up for a farewell game post Rio but she window goes closer and closer for her to either make a return to the team or retire.
U.S. Women’s National Team Roster By Position:
GOALKEEPERS (3): Ashlyn Harris (Orlando Pride), Alyssa Naeher (Chicago Red Stars), Hope Solo (Seattle Reign FC)
DEFENDERS (8): Whitney Engen (Boston Breakers), Jaelene Hinkle (Western New York Flash), 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 (7): 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)
FORWARDS (5): Crystal Dunn (Washington Spirit), Alex Morgan (Orlando Pride), Christen Press (Chicago Red Stars), Mallory Pugh (Real Colorado), Ashley Sanchez (So Cal Blues)