CHICAGO (Oct. 1, 2013) - U.S. Women's National Team head coach Tom Sermanni has named a roster of 25 players who will be in with the U.S. WNT over various periods from Oct. 15-30. The USA plays three friendly matches, facing Australia on Oct. 20 in San Antonio (12:30 CT on NBC) and New Zealand on Oct. 27 in San Francisco (3:30 p.m. PT) and Oct. 30 in Columbus, Ohio (7:30 p.m. ET). Fans can also follow all the matches live online via ussoccer.com's MatchTracker and Twitter @ussoccer_wnt.
Six Tar Heels, current and former, are amongst the call ups. This group includes Tobin Heath, Crystal Dunn, Meghan Klingenberg, Whitney Engen, Yael Averbuch and Heather O'Reilly.
U.S. Women's National Team - Oct. 15-30 Roster Notes
- Oct. 20 - USA vs. Australia at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas
- Oct. 27 - USA vs. New Zealand at Candlestick Park in San Francisco
- Oct. 30 - USA vs. New Zealand at Columbus Crew Stadium in Columbus, Ohio
16 DAYS, 25 PLAYERS, THREE GAMES: The following are notes on the U.S. Women's National Team's 25-player roster named by U.S. head coach Tom Sermanni for the upcoming friendlies in Texas, Northern California and Ohio:
• Sermanni will choose 18 players to suit up for each of the three games.
• The majority of the USA's European-based players will be unavailable for the Oct. 20 match at the Alamodome as they will be competing in league play in Sweden and France, as well as playing UEFA Women's Champions League matches.
• However, all of the USA's NWSL-based regulars will be in for the WNT's first match in San Antonio in 17 years. Those NWSL players include league MVP Lauren Holiday, NWSL Defender of the Year Becky Sauerbrunn and NWSL Goalkeeper of the Year Nicole Barnhart. In addition, forward Sydney Leroux, who scored four times against Mexico on Sept. 3, U.S. all-time leading scorer Abby Wambach, as well as Christie Rampone, Alex Morgan, Carli Lloyd, Heather O'Reilly, Rachel Buehler, Kristie Mewis and Hope Solo will all be with the U.S. team for the Oct. 20 contest.
• Sermanni named two college players to the roster in North Carolina defender Crystal Dunn, who has five starts in her first seven caps for the USA this year, and University of Virginia midfielder Morgan Brian, who scored her first WNT goal against in just her second cap against Mexico on Sept. 3. Dunn and Brian, whose schools face off against each other in ACC play on Oct. 20, will be with the U.S. team only for the match against Australia and will return to their schools for the remainder of the college season.
• Seventeen of the players on the roster play for NWSL clubs, but one (Ali Krieger) is on loan to Sweden club Tyresö. Tyresö also features Tar Heels Whitney Engen and Meghan Klingenberg and Stanford's Christen Press.
• Engen, who just helped Liverpool win the FA Women's Super League title for the first time, will play Champions League with Tyresö on Oct. 9 and Oct. 16 when they take on UNC's Tobin Heath and Lindsay Horan's Paris Saint-Germain of France.
• The U.S. team is 10-0-2 in 2013 and has scored 43 goals while giving up eight, three of which came in a 3-3 tie with European champion Germany on April 5 in Offenbach.
Q&A with U.S. WNT Head Coach Tom Sermanni
U.S. WNT head coach Tom Sermanni has named 25 players to come in with the team over a period of 16 days in October to play three matches - one against Australia and two against New Zealand. We asked the native Scotsman a few questions about the upcoming opponents and the roster, from which he will name 18 to suit up for each match.
On facing Australia, whom he coached from 1994-96 and 2005-12, as well as New Zealand, a team the Matildas faced many times during his tenure:
TS: "The Australia and New Zealand teams by their nature are very competitive. New Zealand has been playing a significant number of internationals on the road, so they are match-hardened and Australia is reaching the peak of their pre-season before beginning their W-League."
On calling up North Carolina's Crystal Dunn and Virginia's Morgan Brian during their college seasons:
TS: "I'm grateful that we were able to work with Anson Dorrance at UNC and Steve Swanson at Virginia to enable Crystal and Morgan to come in for the match. They are both talented young players and these kind of opportunities are extremely valuable for them. I know the colleges have a big game against each other and I really appreciate Anson and Steve's continuing support of the U.S. National Team programs."
U.S. Women's National Team Roster By Position (current and former Tar Heels in bold)
GOALKEEPERS (4): Nicole Barnhart (FC Kansas City), Adrianna Franch (WNY Flash), Jill Loyden (Sky Blue FC), Hope Solo (Seattle Reign FC)
DEFENDERS (10): Rachel Buehler (Portland Thorns FC), Stephanie Cox (Seattle Reign FC), Crystal Dunn (UNC), Whitney Engen (Tyresö), Meghan Klingenberg (Tyresö), Ali Krieger (Tyresö), Kristie Mewis (FC Kansas City), Christie Rampone (Sky Blue FC), Leigh Ann Robinson (FC Kansas City), Becky Sauerbrunn (FC Kansas City)
MIDFIELDERS (7): Yael Averbuch (Göteborg), Morgan Brian (Virginia), Tobin Heath (PSG), Lauren Holiday (FC Kansas City), Carli Lloyd (WNY Flash), Heather O'Reilly (Boston Breakers), Megan Rapinoe (Lyon)
FORWARDS (4): Sydney Leroux (Boston Breakers), Alex Morgan (Portland Thorns FC), Christen Press (Tyresö), Abby Wambach (WNY Flash)
Head Coach: Tom Sermanni (Glasgow, Scotland)
Asst. Coach/GK Coach: Paul Rogers (Brighton, England)
Fitness Coach: Dawn Scott (Newcastle, England)