The United States Women’s National team returns to action on Tuesday with a friendly against local rivals Mexico in Washington, D.C. Tom Sermanni’s side has not taken the field since June 20 when Abby Wambach grabbed the headlines against the Korea Republic by scoring a hat-trick and becoming the all-time international record goal-scorer.
Since then, there has been a long break due to the inaugural National Women’s Soccer League season. And the league has a significant imprint on Sermanni’s squad as, with players from Europe not being considered due to the short training time, 15 of the 18-strong roster are from the NWSL. The most high-profile inclusion is that of Alex Morgan. The striker suffered a MCL strain last month but returned to action as a substitute for the Portland Thorns on Saturday. Sermanni explained that Morgan’s fitness will be assessed before deciding whether she would feature at RFK Stadium.
“We will evaluate Alex’s recovery from her injury when she comes into camp,” he said, according to USSoccer.com. “At this point, the most important thing is that she is completely fit and healthy. If our medical staff says she’s ready to play, then she’ll play.”
Two players who are definitely ruled out through injury are Megan Rapinoe and Tobin Heath. Both of the midfielders are still recovering from heel problems. Sermanni has handed first call-ups to defender Leigh Ann Robinson and midfielder Erika Tymrak, who was voted the NWSL Rookie of the Year.
The U.S. holds a 26-1-1 record against Mexico, which is currently ranked 24th in the world. The two sides will be meeting for the first time since January 2012 when the U.S. prevailed 4-0.
GK: Nicole Barnhart (FC Kansas City), Hope Solo (Seattle Reign)
DF: Rachel Buehler (Portland Thorns FC), Crystal Dunn (UNC), Kristie Mewis (FC Kansas City), Christie Rampone (Sky Blue FC), Leigh Ann Robinson (FC Kansas City), Becky Sauerbrunn (FC Kansas City)
MF: Yael Averbuch (Gothenburg), Vanessa DiBernardo (Illinois), Morgan Brian (Virginia), Lauren Holiday (FC Kansas City), Carli Lloyd (Western NY Flash), Heather O’Reilly (Boston Breakers), Erika Tymrak (FC Kansas City)
FW: Sydney Leroux (Boston Breakers), Alex Morgan (Portland Thorns FC), Abby Wambach (Western NY Flash)
Where to watch: The international friendly will kick-off from RFK Stadoium in Washington, D.C. at 8 p.m. ET. Coverage will be provided by Fox Sports 1. A delayed online stream will be available on Fox Soccer 2Go from 9 a.m. on Wednesday.
Sports reporter, mainly focusing on my native sport of soccer, but also dabbling in some tennis and Formula One.