After a short camp in Orlando FL, the U.S. Women’s Soccer Team has announced its roster for the 2017 SheBelieves Cup. The 23-player roster was cut down from the camp of 25, with 2015 World Cup Champions Meghan Klingenberg and Amy Rodriguez not making the cut, as well as Sky Blue FC midfielder Sarah Killion (Klingenberg has been working her way back from a back injury, and Rodriguez was in just her second camp after having her second child.) Jessica McDonald of the North Ccarolina Courage was brought onto the roster outside of the Orlando camp, with USWNT head coach Jill Ellis citing depth at the forward position as an issue.
Ellis alluded to the expectations of game-readiness that might have kept a number of World Cup veterans off the roster, saying in a statement, “I think the difference this year from perhaps the preceding years is that we’re not using this environment as a place where a player can just come in and work their way back into form and fitness. It’s now about them having to be ready to deliver at least 75 minutes in a SheBelieves game. It’s not ideal to take a player who is not yet “played in” and can potentially only give you 15-20 minutes. When you’re building for a world event you will invest in a player who you think will make the final roster, even if they are working their way back in, because you want them to hear the information, stay connected and sense that they are going to be a part of that team for a world event.”
The 2017 SheBelieves Cup kicks off on March 1st in Chester, PA, and will feature the United States, Germany, England, and France, all nations ranked in the top 5 internationally by FIFA.
2017 SheBelieves Cup Roster
DEFENDERS (6): Julie Johnston (Chicago Red Stars), Ali Krieger (Orlando Pride), Kelley O’Hara (Sky Blue FC), Becky Sauerbrunn (FC Kansas City), Casey Short (Chicago Red Stars), Emily Sonnett (Portland Thorns FC)
MIDFIELDERS (8): Morgan Brian (Houston Dash), Tobin Heath (Portland Thorns FC), Lindsey Horan (Portland Thorns FC), Rose Lavelle (Boston Breakers), Carli Lloyd (Manchester City), Allie Long (Portland Thorns FC), Sam Mewis (NC Courage), Brianna Pinto (CASL)