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USWNT FIFA World Cup Preview

By: Gabrielle Nordstrom

Edited By: Kylie Augis

Soon, women’s soccer will be taking over the world again as the FIFA Women’s World Cup starts on July 20. As we are a little less than a month away, United States head coach Vlatko Andonovski named his 23-player squad. The USWNT looks to defend their trophy.

The group of 23 players, trainers and coaches will take a trip to Australia and New Zealand, trying to bring back a fifth World Cup title, third in a row, to the United States.

Let's take a look at some of the players named to the USWNT roster.

Megan Rapinoe (left) and Alex Morgan (right). Courtesy of Quality Sport Images/Getty Images

Alex Morgan & Megan Rapinoe

Undoubtedly, two of the most successful USWNT players in history. Each is making their fourth trip to the World Cup.

Morgan has won two cups with the USWNT. In her first World Cup, the USWNT were runners-up, scoring twice in five games. In her second, she posted one goal in seven games and walked home with the World Cup Trophy. In her third World Cup, she played in six games, scoring six goals and three assists, walking home with yet another World Cup trophy.

Rapinoe has also won two cups with the USWNT, the same years as Morgan. Rapinoe won the Golden Ball as the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup best player and the Golden Boot as the top scorer with six goals and three assists.

Courtesy of Steph Yang / The Athletic

Julie Ertz

Another veteran star looking to bring another World Cup trophy home. Ertz currently has won two World Cup’s with the USWNT. Many were questioning whether she would make a return to the world’s biggest stage after an injury made her take a long break from the field.

Alyssa Thompson & Sophia Smith

Many soccer fans were excited to see if two of the youngest soccer stars would make the roster.

Thompson,18, was the NWSL’s first overall pick this year. She has made three appearances with the national team and is patiently waiting for her first point.

(Thompson) Courtesy of Jeff Roberson / Associated Press

Smith, 22, is hoping to bring back her first World Cup trophy during her first trip to the big stage. She currently has 29 appearances with the USWNT, netting 12 goals and three assists.

Other Players to Watch

Rose Lavelle, a young, already proven star, will be making a return for her second World Cup. In her first trip to this tournament, Lavelle walked away with not only a World Cup trophy, but the Bronze Ball as the third-best player in the tournament. (Smith) Courtesy of Jason Mowry Getty Images

Lindsay Horan has developed into one of the key midfielders for the team. She currently has one World Cup trophy with the USWNT and is looking to achieve another one. In 128 appearances with the team, she has 27 goals and 33 assists.

As for defenders Kelley O’Hara, Crystal Dunn, and Emily Sonnett will be heavily relied on as captain and backbone of the team Becky Sauerbrunn will be out of the tournament with an injury. O’Hara has two World Cup trophies, while Dunn and Sonnett each have one. All three will provide a veteran experience for the backline.

The net will be in good hands as Alyssa Naeher will be making another return. Naeher currently has two World Cup titles with the team. In 90 appearances, Naeher has shut out the opposing team 53 times, over half of her appearances.

The tournament will begin on July 20. USA will be playing in Group E against the Netherlands, Vietnam and Portugal. Will the USWNT be able to bring back yet another World Cup title and continue to defend their trophy for the third year in a row?

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