Tobin Heath pulls out of USWNT April friendlies
Tobin Heath in a game against Romania | Source: Jim Malone - VAVEL USA

First, it was Morgan Brian. Then it was Lindsey Horan. Now it’s Tobin Heath. That makes three UWSNT players that have withdrawn from the two friendlies scheduled for next month against Russia.

What is the world is going on?

Heath, 28, is withdrawing due to a minor back injury. Heath has not participated in the first two games of the 2017 Portland Invitational for the Portland Thorns and there is no timetable set on when she will resume practicing. The Thorns begin their 2017 NWSL season on April 15 against the Orlando Pride at Providence Park in Portland, Oregon.

USWNT career

Heath has been part of the senior national team since 2008 and has 131 caps and 18 goals. In 2016, she made 22 appearances – 20 of them starts. She scored six goals and assisted on eight others while logging 1,747 minutes for the national team.

2016 was her most productive year with the national team. So far in 2017, she has made three appearances – two of them starts. She has played 194 minutes and has no goals or assists.

With her domestic club, she has been there since the beginning when the league began in 2013. The last two seasons, she has appeared in only 26 games with 25 of them being starts. She has two goals and 11 assists the last two years. She did lead the NWSL is assists last year with ten – the next closest being Jessica McDonald with seven.

Has Jill Ellis lost her team? | Source: Jenny Chuang - VAVEL USA
Has Jill Ellis lost her team? | Source: Jenny Chuang - VAVEL USA

It’s a bit of a scary thought that all of these players these last few days pulling out of the friendlies. Are they being worked too hard? Are they no longer committed to Jill Ellis and her questionable tactics? Only time will tell.

The USWNT begins camp on Thursday will 22 players. Here is the roster as of publishing.

GOALKEEPERS (3): Jane Campbell (Houston Dash), Ashlyn Harris (Orlando Pride), Alyssa Naeher (Chicago Red Stars)

DEFENDERS (6): Meghan Klingenberg (Portland Thorns FC), Ali Krieger (Orlando Pride), Kelley O’Hara (Sky Blue FC), Megan Oyster (Boston Breakers), Becky Sauerbrunn (FC Kansas City), Casey Short (Chicago Red Stars)

MIDFIELDERS (6): Jaelin Howell (Real Colorado), Rose Lavelle (Boston Breakers), Carli Lloyd (Houston Dash/Manchester City), Allie Long (Portland Thorns FC), Samantha Mewis (NC Courage), Megan Rapinoe (Seattle Reign FC)

FORWARDS (7): Crystal Dunn (Chelsea FC), Alex Morgan (Orlando Pride/Olympique Lyonnais, FRA), Kealia Ohai (Houston Dash), Christen Press (Chicago Red Stars), Mallory Pugh (UCLA), Amy Rodriguez (FC Kansas City), Lynn Williams (NC Courage)