United States women's national soccer team

The United States women's national soccer team (USWNT) represents the United States in international women's soccer. The team is the most successful in international women's soccer, winning four Women's World Cup titles (1991, 1999, 2015, and 2019), four Olympic gold medals (1996, 2004, 2008, and 2012), and eight CONCACAF Gold Cups. It medaled in every World Cup and Olympic tournament in women's soccer from 1991 to 2015, before being knocked out in the quarterfinal of the 2016 Summer Olympics. The team is governed by United States Soccer Federation and competes in CONCACAF (the Confederation of North, Central American, and Caribbean Association Football).

United States
Nickname(s)The Stars and Stripes
AssociationUnited States Soccer Federation
ConfederationCONCACAF
Sub-confederationNAFU
Head coachVlatko Andonovski
CaptainBecky Sauerbrunn
Most capsKristine Lilly (354)
Top scorerAbby Wambach (184)
FIFA codeUSA
First colors
Second colors
FIFA ranking
Current 1 (April 16, 2021)[1]
Highest1 (various; current since June 2017)
Lowest2 (various; last in March 2017)
First international
 Italy 1–0 United States 
(Jesolo, Italy; August 18, 1985)
Biggest win
 United States 14–0 Dominican Republic 
(Vancouver, Canada; January 20, 2012)
Biggest defeat
 Brazil 4–0 United States 
(Hangzhou, China; September 27, 2007)
World Cup
Appearances8 (first in 1991)
Best resultChampions: 1991, 1999, 2015, 2019
Olympic Games
Appearances6 (first in 1996)
Best result Gold: 1996, 2004, 2008, 2012
CONCACAF Championship
& Gold Cup
Appearances9 (first in 1991)
Best resultChampions: 1991, 1993, 1994, 2000, 2002, 2006, 2014, 2018
Medal record
FIFA Women's World Cup
1991 ChinaTeam
1999 USATeam
2015 CanadaTeam
2019 FranceTeam
2011 GermanyTeam
1995 SwedenTeam
2003 USATeam
2007 ChinaTeam
Olympic Games
1996 AtlantaTeam
2004 AthensTeam
2008 BeijingTeam
2012 LondonTeam
2000 SydneyTeam

After mostly being ranked No. 2 from 2003 to 2008 in the FIFA Women's World Rankings,[2] the team was ranked No. 1 continuously from March 2008 to November 2014, the longest consecutive top ranking of any team.[3] Since FIFA rankings were established in 2003, it has been ranked No. 1 for a total of 13 years; the only other team to be ranked No. 1, Germany, has been there for a total of 4½ years. The USWNT has never been ranked lower than second.

The team was selected as the U.S. Olympic Committee's Team of the Year in 1997 and 1999,[4] and Sports Illustrated chose the entire team as 1999 Sportswomen of the Year for its usual Sportsman of the Year honor.[5] On April 5, 2017, U.S. Women's Soccer and U.S. Soccer reached a deal on a new collective bargaining agreement that would, among other things, lead to a pay increase.[6]

History

Origins in the 1980s

The passing of Title IX in 1972, which outlawed gender-based discrimination for federally-funded education programs, spurred the creation of college soccer teams across the United States at a time when women's soccer was rising in popularity internationally.[7] The U.S. Soccer Federation tasked coach Mike Ryan to select a roster of college players to participate in the 1985 Mundialito tournament in Italy, its first foray into women's international soccer.[8] The team played its first match on August 18, 1985, losing 1–0 to Italy, and finished the tournament in fourth place after failing to win its remaining matches against Denmark and England.[9][10]

Despite the tournament loss, the first match against Italy is where the United States’ famous “Oosa Oosa Oosa Ah!” chant was born. During the match, the style of play and athleticism of the United States ultimately won over the Italian fans. To the team's surprise, the Italians began cheering for the US, which they pronounced as “oosa.” Such surprising support from the Italians impressed the United States so much that the team decided to adopt the Italians' endearing mispronunciation as its new chant that it would use to conclude its pre-game huddles. From then on, the United States has concluded each pre-game huddle with the same chant, “Oosa Oosa Oosa Ah!” as a call back to where it all began in 1985 that honors the legacy of those who came before.[11]

University of North Carolina coach Anson Dorrance was hired as the team's first full-time manager in 1986 with the goal of fielding a competitive women's team at the next Mundialito and at future tournaments.[10] In their first Mundialito under Dorrance, the United States defeated China, Brazil, and Japan before finishing as runners-up to Italy.[12] Dorrance gave national team appearances to teenage players, including future stars Mia Hamm, Julie Foudy, and Kristine Lilly, instead of the college players preferred by the federation.[13] The United States played in the 1988 FIFA Women's Invitation Tournament in China, a FIFA-sanctioned competition to test the feasibility of a regular women's championship, and lost in the quarterfinals to eventual champions Norway.[10]

1990s

Following the 1988 tournament, FIFA announced plans for a new women's tournament, named the 1st FIFA World Championship for Women's Football for the M&M's Cup until it was retroactively given the "World Cup" name. The United States qualified for the tournament by winning the inaugural CONCACAF Women's Championship, hosted by Haiti in April 1991, outscoring their opponents 49–0 for the sole CONCACAF berth in the tournament.[10][14] The team played several exhibition matches abroad against European opponents to prepare for the world championship, while its players quit their regular jobs to train full-time with meager compensation.[15][16] Dorrance utilized a 4–3–3 formation that was spearheaded by the "Triple-Edged Sword" of forward Michelle Akers-Stahl and wingers Carin Jennings and April Heinrichs.[17]

At the Women's World Cup, the United States won all three of its group stage matches and outscored its opponents 11–2. In the opening match against Sweden, the U.S. took a 3–0 lead early in the second half, but conceded two goals to end the match with a narrower 3–2 victory. The U.S. proceeded to win 5–0 in its second match against Brazil and 3–0 in its third match against Japan in the following days, clinching first place in the group and a quarterfinal berth.[18] The United States proceeded with a 7–0 victory in the quarterfinals over Chinese Taipei, fueled by a five-goal performance by Akers-Stahl in the first fifty minutes of the match.[18]

In the semifinals against Germany, Carin Jennings scored a hat-trick in the first half as the team clinched a place in the final with a 5–2 victory.[19] The team's lopsided victories in the earlier rounds had brought attention from American media outlets, but the final match was not televised live in the U.S.[18] The United States won the inaugural Women's World Cup title by defeating Norway 2–1 in the final, played in front of 65,000 spectators at Tianhe Stadium in Guangzhou, as Akers-Stahl scored twice to create and restore a lead for the Americans.[20] Akers-Stahl finished as the top goalscorer at the tournament, with ten goals, and Carin Jennings was awarded the Golden Ball as the tournament's best player.[21]

Despite their Women's World Cup victory, the U.S. team remained in relative obscurity and received a small welcome from several U.S. Soccer Federation officials upon arrival at John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York City.[22] The team were given fewer resources and little attention from the federation as they focused on improving the men's national team in preparation for the 1994 men's World Cup that would be hosted in the United States.[23] The women's team was placed on hiatus after the tournament, only playing twice in 1992, but returned the following year to play in several tournaments hosted in Cyprus, Canada, and the United States, including a second CONCACAF Championship title. The program was still supported better than those of the former Soviet Union, where football was considered a "men's game".[24][23][25]

The United States played in several friendly tournaments to prepare for the 1995 FIFA Women's World Cup and its qualification campaign. The first was the inaugural staging of the Algarve Cup in Portugal, which saw the team win its two group stage matches but lose 1–0 to Norway in the final. It followed by a victory in the Chiquita Cup, an exhibition tournament hosted in August on the U.S. East Coast against Germany, China, and Norway.[26][27] Dorrance resigned from his position as head coach in early August and was replaced by his assistant, Tony DiCicco, a former professional goalkeeper who played in the American Soccer League.[23][28] DiCicco led the United States to a berth in the Women's World Cup by winning the 1994 CONCACAF Championship, where the team scored 36 goals and conceded only one.[26]

In February 1995, the U.S. women's program opened a permanent training and treatment facility in Sanford, Florida, and began a series of warm-up friendlies that were paid for by American company Nike.[29] The team topped their group in the Women's World Cup, despite a 3–3 tie with China in the opening match and losing goalkeeper Brianna Scurry to a red card in their second match. The United States proceeded to beat Japan 4–0 in the quarterfinals, but lost 1–0 to eventual champions Norway in the semifinals. The team finished in third place, winning 2–0 in its consolation match against China.

The team won the gold medal in the inaugural Olympic women's soccer tournament in the 1996 Summer Olympics, defeating China 2–1 in the final before a crowd of 76,481 fans.[30] Julie Foudy, Kristine Lilly, and the rest of the 1999 team started a revolution towards women's team sports in America. An influential victory came in the 1999 World Cup, when they defeated China 5–4 in a penalty shoot-out following a 0–0 draw after extended time.[31] With this win they emerged onto the world stage and brought significant media attention to women's soccer and athletics. On July 10, 1999, over 90,000 people (the largest ever for a women's sporting event and one of the largest attendances in the world for a tournament game final) filled the Rose Bowl to watch the United States play China in the Final. After a back and forth game, the score was tied 0–0 at full-time, and remained so after extra time, leading to a penalty kick shootout. With Briana Scurry's save of China's third kick, the score was 4–4 with only Brandi Chastain left to shoot. She scored and won the game for the United States. Chastain dropped to her knees and whipped off her shirt, celebrating in her sports bra, which later made the cover of Sports Illustrated and the front pages of newspapers around the country and world.[32] This win influenced many girls to want to play on a soccer team.[33]

2000s

In the 2003 FIFA Women's World Cup, the U.S. defeated Norway 1–0 in the quarterfinals but lost 0–3 to Germany in the semifinals. The team then defeated Canada 3–1 to claim third place.[34] Abby Wambach was the team's top scorer with three goals, while Joy Fawcett and Shannon Boxx made the tournament's all-star team. In the 2004 Olympics, the last major international tournament for Hamm and Foudy, the U.S. earned the gold medal, winning 2–1 over Brazil in the final on an extra time goal by Wambach.[35]

At the 2007 FIFA Women's World Cup, the U.S. defeated England 3–0 in the quarterfinals but then suffered its most lopsided loss in team history when it lost to Brazil 0–4 in the semifinals.[36] The U.S. recovered to defeat Norway to take third place.[37] Abby Wambach was the team's leading scorer with 6 goals, and Kristine Lilly was the only American named to the tournament's all-star team.

The team won another gold medal in the 2008 Olympics,[38] but interest in the Women's National Team had diminished since their performance in the 1999 World Cup. However, the second women's professional league was created in March 2009, Women's Professional Soccer.

2010s

In the quarterfinal of the 2011 Women's World Cup in Germany, the U.S. defeated Brazil 5–3 on penalty kicks. Abby Wambach's goal in the 122nd minute to tie the game 2–2 has been voted the greatest goal in U.S. soccer history and the greatest goal in Women's World Cup history.[39][40] The U.S. then beat France 3–1 in the semifinal, but lost to Japan 3–1 on penalty kicks in the Final after drawing 1–1 in regulation and 2–2 in overtime. Hope Solo was named the tournament's best goalkeeper and Abby Wambach won the silver ball as the tournament's second-best player.

In the 2012 Summer Olympics, the U.S. won the gold medal for the fourth time in five Olympics by defeating Japan 2–1 in front of 80,203 fans at Wembley Stadium, a record for a women's soccer game at the Olympics.[41] The United States advanced to face Japan for the gold medal by winning the semifinal against Canada, a 4–3 victory at the end of extra time.[42] The 2012 London Olympics marked the first time the USWNT won every game en route to the gold medal and set an Olympic women's team record of 16 goals scored.[42]

A ticker tape parade in Manhattan celebrating the USWNT's 2015 World Cup victory

The National Women's Soccer League started in 2013, and provided competitive games as well as opportunities to players on the fringes of the squad.[43][44] The U.S. had a 43-game unbeaten streak that spanned two years  the streak began with a 4–0 win over Sweden in the 2012 Algarve Cup, and came to an end after a 1–0 loss against Sweden in the 2014 Algarve Cup.[45][46]

The U.S. defeated Japan 5–2 in the final of the 2015 World Cup, becoming the first team in history to win three Women's World Cup titles. In the 16th minute, Carli Lloyd achieved the fastest hat-trick from kick-off in World Cup history, and Abby Wambach was greeted with a standing ovation for her last World Cup match.[47] Following their 2015 World Cup win, the team was honored with a ticker tape parade in New York City, the first for a women's sports team, and honored by President Barack Obama at the White House.[48] On December 16, 2015, however, a 0–1 loss to China in Wambach's last game meant the team's first home loss since 2004, ending their 104-game home unbeaten streak.[49]

In the 2016 Summer Olympics, the U.S. drew against Sweden in the quarterfinal; in the following penalty kick phase, Sweden won the game 4–3. The loss marked the first time that the USWNT did not advance to the gold medal game of the Olympics, and the first time that the USWNT failed to advance to the semifinal round of a major tournament.[50]

After the defeat in the 2016 Olympics, the USWNT underwent a year of experimentation which saw them losing three home games. If not for a comeback win against Brazil, the USWNT was on the brink of losing four home games in one year, a low never before seen by the USWNT. 2017 saw the USWNT play 12 games against teams ranked in the top-15 in the world.[51]

Throughout 2018, the U.S. would pick up two major tournament wins, winning both the SheBelieves Cup[52] and the Tournament of Nations.[53] The team would enter qualifying for the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup on a 21-game unbeaten streak and dominated the competition, winning all five of its games and the tournament whilst qualifying for the World Cup as well as scoring 18 goals and conceding none.[54] On November 8, 2018, the U.S. earned their 500th victory in team history after a 1–0 victory over Portugal.[55] The start of 2019 saw the U.S. lose an away game to France, 3–1, marking the end of a 28-game unbeaten streak and their first loss since a 1–0 defeat to Australia in July 2017.[56]

The USWNT started off their 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup campaign with a 13–0 victory against Thailand, setting a new Women's World Cup goal record. Alex Morgan equaled Michelle Akers' record of scoring five goals in a single World Cup match, while four of her teammates scored their first World Cup goals in their debut at the tournament.[57] The U.S. would win its next match against Chile 3–0[58] before concluding the group stage with a win of 2–0 over Sweden.[59] The team emerged as the winners of Group F and would go on to face Spain in the Round of 16, whom they would defeat 2–1 thanks to a pair of Megan Rapinoe penalties.[60] The team would achieve identical results in their next two games. With 2–1 victories over France[61] and then England[62] seeing them advance to a record third straight World Cup final, they played against the Netherlands for the title. They beat the Netherlands 2–0 in the final on July 7, 2019, becoming the first team in history to win four Women's World Cup titles.

On July 30, 2019, Jill Ellis announced that she would step down as head coach following the conclusion of the team's post-World Cup victory tour on October 6, 2019.[63]

Vlatko Andonovski was hired as head coach of the USWNT in October 2019, replacing Ellis.[64]

2020s

The USWNT began the new decade by winning both the 2020 CONCACAF Women's Olympic Qualifying tournament (which qualified the team for the 2020 Summer Olympics) and the 2020 SheBelieves Cup titles.[65][66][67]

In early March 2020, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the USSF cancelled previously scheduled USWNT friendlies against Australia and Brazil.[68] Later that same month, it was announced by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and the Tokyo Metropolitan Government that the 2020 Summer Olympics were to be postponed until July 2021.[69] They later made a comeback on November 27, 2020, where they took on the Netherlands in a friendly match. Rose Lavelle and Kristie Mewis scored both goals in the match, winning the game 2–0.

Team image

Media coverage

U.S. television coverage for the five Women's World Cups from 1995 to 2011 was provided by ESPN/ABC and Univision,[70][71] while coverage rights for the three Women's World Cups from 2015 to 2023 were awarded to Fox Sports and Telemundo.[72][73] In May 2014 a deal was signed to split TV coverage of other USWNT games between ESPN, Fox Sports, and Univision through the end of 2022.[74] The USWNT games in the 2014 CONCACAF Women's Championship and the 2015 Algarve Cup were broadcast by Fox Sports.[75][76] NBC will broadcast the Olympic tournament through 2032.[77]

The 1999 World Cup final set the original record for largest U.S. television audience for a women's soccer match, averaging 18 million viewers.[78][79] It was the most viewed English-language U.S. broadcast of any soccer match until the 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup final between the United States and Japan.[80]

The 2015 Women's World Cup Final between the United States and Japan was the most watched soccer match—men's or women's—in American broadcast history.[81] It averaged 23 million viewers and higher ratings than the NBA finals and the Stanley Cup finals.[81][82] The final was also the most watched US-Spanish language broadcast of a FIFA Women's World Cup match in history.

Overall, there were over 750 million viewers for the 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup, making it the most watched Women's World Cup in history. The FIFA Women's World Cup is now the second-most watched FIFA tournament, with only the men's FIFA World Cup attracting more viewership.[83]

A narrative nonfiction book covering the entire history of the team from 1985 to 2019 called The National Team: The Inside Story of the Women Who Changed Soccer was named one of Vanity Fair's best books of 2019 and made NPR's 2019 year-end books list.[84][85] A book about the team's 1999 Women's World Cup campaign, Girls of Summer: The U.S. Women's Soccer Team and How It Changed the World was released in 2001 and in 2020 Netflix announced a film based on the book.[86]

In 2005, HBO released a documentary called Dare to Dream: The Story of the U.S. Women's Soccer Team.[87] In 2013, a documentary about the 1999 World Cup-winning team called The 99ers was produced by former player Julie Foudy and ESPN Films.[88]

Attendance

The 1999 World Cup final, in which the United States defeated China, set a world attendance record for a women's sporting event of 90,185 in a sellout at the Rose Bowl in Southern California.[89] The record for Olympic women's soccer attendance was set by the 2012 Olympic final between the USWNT and Japan, with 80,023 spectators at Wembley Stadium.[90]

Pay discrimination

In recent years, the players of the USWNT have waged an escalating legal fight with the United States Soccer Federation over gender discrimination. Central to their demands is equal pay. The players point to their lower paychecks as compared to the U.S. men's national team, despite their higher record of success in recent years.[91]

In April 2016, five players filed a wage-discrimination action against the U.S. Soccer Federation with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.[92] The group consisted of Hope Solo, Carli Lloyd, Alex Morgan, Megan Rapinoe, and Becky Sauerbrunn.

One year later, in April 2017, it was announced that a new collective bargaining agreement (CBA) with U.S soccer had been made. The agreement stated that the players would have an increased base pay and improved match bonuses. These changes could increase their previous pay from $200,000 to $300,000. However, the CBA did not guarantee the U.S national women's team equal pay with the men's team. The CBA's five-year term through 2021 ensured that the next negotiation would not become an issue for the team in its upcoming competitions. On top of this CBA, U.S Soccer had agreed to pay the players for two years' worth of unequal per-diem payments.[93]

On March 8, 2019, all 28 members of the U.S. team filed a gender discrimination lawsuit against the U.S. Soccer Federation.[94] The lawsuit, filed in the U.S. District Court in Los Angeles, accused the Federation of "institutional gender discrimination".[95] The lawsuit claims that the discrimination affects not only the amount the players are paid but also their playing, training, and travel conditions. In May 2020, several key parts of the case were dismissed, with federal judge R. Gary Klausner noting that the team had agreed to take higher base compensation and other benefits in their most recent CBA instead of the bonuses received by the men's national team.[96]

On March 8, 2021, the second anniversary of the team's pay discrimination lawsuit, Congresswomen Doris Matsui and Rosa DeLauro introduced the Give Our Athletes Level Salaries (GOALS) Act to ensure the U.S. women's national soccer team "are paid fair and equitable wages compared to the U.S. Men's team".[97] The GOALS Act threatens to cut federal funding for the 2026 World Cup if the U.S. Soccer Federation does not comply.[98]

Artificial turf

Along with their lawsuit for pay-equity, the US Women’s Soccer players have fought FIFA on policies regarding artificial turf. This battle to eliminate the use of turf in major women’s games heightened around the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup, hosted by Canada; during this tournament, the US Women played 8 of their 10 games on artificial turf.[99] Prior to the 2015 World Cup, Abby Wambach headed a discrimination lawsuit with other global soccer stars including Marta of Brazil and Homare Sawa of Japan.[100] Due to the tournament’s quick approach, the suit was dropped as players were denied an expedited hearing.

Staff

Coaching staff

RoleNameStart date
Head coach Vlatko Andonovski October 2019
Assistant coach Milan Ivanovic November 2019
Assistant coach Erica Dambach (interim) January 2020
Goalkeeper coach Philip Poole January 2020

Technical staff

Role Name Start date
Sporting director Earnie Stewart August 2019
General manager Kate Markgraf August 2019

Players

Current squad

The following 23 players were named to the squad for the friendlies against  Portugal on June 10,  Jamaica on June 13, and  Nigeria on June 16, 2021.[101]

Caps and goals are current as of April 13, 2021, after match against  France.

No. Pos. Player Date of birth (age) Caps Goals Club
1GK Alyssa Naeher (1988-04-20) April 20, 1988 69 0 Chicago Red Stars
1GK Jane Campbell (1995-02-17) February 17, 1995 5 0 Houston Dash
1GK Adrianna Franch (1990-11-12) November 12, 1990 4 0 Portland Thorns

2DF Becky Sauerbrunn (captain) (1985-06-06) June 6, 1985 184 0 Portland Thorns
2DF Kelley O'Hara (1988-08-04) August 4, 1988 136 2 Washington Spirit
2DF Crystal Dunn (1992-07-03) July 3, 1992 111 24 Portland Thorns
2DF Abby Dahlkemper (1993-05-13) May 13, 1993 66 0 Manchester City
2DF Emily Sonnett (1993-11-25) November 25, 1993 51 0 Washington Spirit
2DF Tierna Davidson (1998-09-19) September 19, 1998 29 1 Chicago Red Stars
2DF Margaret Purce (1995-09-18) September 18, 1995 6 1 Gotham FC
2DF Alana Cook (1997-04-11) April 11, 1997 2 0 Paris Saint-Germain

3MF Lindsey Horan (1994-05-26) May 26, 1994 93 20 Portland Thorns
3MF Sam Mewis (1992-10-09) October 9, 1992 72 21 North Carolina Courage
3MF Rose Lavelle (1995-05-14) May 14, 1995 53 14 OL Reign
3MF Kristie Mewis (1991-02-25) February 25, 1991 22 4 Houston Dash
3MF Andi Sullivan (1995-12-20) December 20, 1995 16 0 Washington Spirit
3MF Catarina Macario (1999-10-04) October 4, 1999 3 1 Lyon

4FW Carli Lloyd (1982-07-16) July 16, 1982 301 124 Gotham FC
4FW Alex Morgan (1989-07-02) July 2, 1989 175 109 Orlando Pride
4FW Megan Rapinoe (1985-07-05) July 5, 1985 175 59 OL Reign
4FW Christen Press (1988-12-29) December 29, 1988 144 60 Manchester United
4FW Lynn Williams (1993-05-21) May 21, 1993 34 10 North Carolina Courage
4FW Sophia Smith (2000-08-10) August 10, 2000 4 0 Portland Thorns

Recent call-ups

The following players were also named to a squad in the last 12 months.

Pos. Player Date of birth (age) Caps Goals Club Latest call-up
GK Casey Murphy (1996-04-25) April 25, 1996 0 0 North Carolina Courage v.  France; April 13, 2021
GK Ashlyn Harris (1985-10-19) October 19, 1985 25 0 Orlando Pride v.  Colombia; January 22, 2021
GK Aubrey Bledsoe (1991-11-20) November 20, 1991 0 0 Washington Spirit v.  Colombia; January 22, 2021

DF Casey Krueger (1990-08-23) August 23, 1990 34 0 Chicago Red Stars 2021 SheBelieves Cup
DF Emily Fox (1998-07-05) July 5, 1998 4 0 Racing Louisville 2021 SheBelieves Cup PRE
DF Ali Krieger (1984-07-28) July 28, 1984 108 1 Orlando Pride v.  Colombia; January 22, 2021
DF Naomi Girma (2000-06-14) June 14, 2000 0 0 Stanford Cardinal Training camp; October 18–28, 2020
DF Sarah Gorden (1992-09-13) September 13, 1992 0 0 Chicago Red Stars Training camp; October 18–28, 2020

MF Julie Ertz (1992-04-06) April 6, 1992 110 20 Chicago Red Stars v.  France; April 13, 2021
MF Jaelin Howell (1999-11-21) November 21, 1999 2 0 Florida State Seminoles 2021 SheBelieves Cup
MF Morgan Gautrat (1993-02-26) February 26, 1993 87 8 Chicago Red Stars Training camp; October 18–28, 2020
MF Shea Groom (1993-03-04) March 4, 1993 0 0 Houston Dash Training camp; October 18–28, 2020
MF Ashley Sanchez (1999-03-16) March 16, 1999 0 0 Washington Spirit Training camp; October 18–28, 2020

FW Mallory Pugh (1998-04-29) April 29, 1998 63 18 Chicago Red Stars 2021 SheBelieves Cup PRE
FW Tobin Heath (1988-05-29) May 29, 1988 169 33 Manchester United v.  Netherlands; November 27, 2020
FW Ashley Hatch (1995-05-25) May 25, 1995 2 0 Washington Spirit v.  Netherlands; November 27, 2020
FW Kealia Watt (1992-01-31) January 31, 1992 3 1 Chicago Red Stars Training camp; October 18–28, 2020
FW Bethany Balcer (1997-03-07) March 7, 1997 0 0 OL Reign Training camp; October 18–28, 2020
FW Mia Fishel (2001-04-30) April 30, 2001 0 0 UCLA Bruins Training camp; October 18–28, 2020

Notes:

  • PRE: Preliminary squad

Recent schedule and results

The following is a list of match results in the last 12 months, as well as any future matches that have been scheduled.

  Win   Draw   Lose   Postponed

2020

November 27, 2020 Friendly Netherlands  0–2  United States Breda, Netherlands
12:35 ET Report
  • Lavelle  41'
  • K. Mewis  70'
Stadium: Rat Verlegh Stadion
Attendance: 0
Referee: Julia Demetrescu (Romania)

2021

January 18, 2021 Friendly United States  4–0  Colombia Orlando, Florida
19:00 ET
  • S. Mewis  4', 33', 47' (pen.)
  • K. Mewis  85'
Report Stadium: Exploria Stadium
Attendance: 2,042
Referee: Karen Abt (United States)
January 22, 2021 Friendly United States  6–0  Colombia Orlando, Florida
19:00 ET
  • Macario  3'
  • Rapinoe  35', 44' (pen.)
  • Williams  60'
  • Horan  73'
  • Purce  86'
Report Stadium: Exploria Stadium
Attendance: 3,202
Referee: Danielle Chesky (United States)
February 18, 2021 SheBelieves Cup United States  1–0  Canada Orlando, Florida
19:00 ET
  • Lavelle  79'
Report Stadium: Exploria Stadium
Attendance: 3,104
Referee: Francia González (Mexico)
February 21, 2021 SheBelieves Cup United States  2–0  Brazil Orlando, Florida
15:00 ET
Report Stadium: Exploria Stadium
Attendance: 4,000
Referee: Melissa Borjas (Honduras)
February 24, 2021 SheBelieves Cup United States  6–0  Argentina Orlando, Florida
19:00 ET
Report Stadium: Exploria Stadium
Attendance: 3,702
Referee: Marianela Araya Cruz (Costa Rica)
April 10, 2021 Friendly Sweden  1–1  United States Stockholm, Sweden
13:00 ET
  • Hurtig  38'
Report
Stadium: Friends Arena
Referee: Lina Lehtovaara (Finland)
April 13, 2021 Friendly France  0–2  United States Le Havre, France
15:00 ET Report
Stadium: Stade Océane
Referee: Riem Hussein (Germany)
June 10, 2021 Friendly United States  v  Portugal Houston, Texas
19:30 CT Stadium: BBVA Stadium
June 13, 2021 Friendly United States  v  Jamaica Houston, Texas
21:00 CT Stadium: BBVA Stadium
June 16, 2021 Friendly United States  v  Nigeria Austin, Texas
20:00 CT Stadium: Q2 Stadium
July 1, 2021 Friendly United States  v  Mexico East Hartford, Connecticut
20:00 ET Stadium: Pratt & Whitney Stadium at Rentschler Field
July 5, 2021 Friendly United States  v  Mexico East Hartford, Connecticut
18:00 ET Stadium: Pratt & Whitney Stadium at Rentschler Field
July 21, 2021 Olympics GS Sweden  v  United States Tokyo, Japan
04:30 ET Stadium: Tokyo Stadium
July 24, 2021 Olympics GS New Zealand  v  United States Saitama, Japan
07:30 ET Stadium: Saitama Stadium 2002
July 27, 2021 Olympics GS United States  v  Australia Kashima, Japan
04:00 ET Stadium: Kashima Stadium
September 18, 2021 Friendly United States  v TBD TBD
September 21, 2021 Friendly United States  v TBD TBD
October 23, 2021 Friendly United States  v TBD TBD
October 26, 2021 Friendly United States  v TBD TBD
November 25, 2021 Friendly Australia  v  United States Australia
Report
November 28, 2021 Friendly Australia  v  United States Australia
Report
December 1, 2021 Friendly TBD v  United States TBD

Competitive record

For results in minor tournaments, see the History of the United States women's national football team

All-time results

As of April 10, 2021
Year M W D L GF GA Athlete of the Year Scoring leader G Assist leader A Coach Major tournam. result
1985 4 0 1 3 3 7 Sharon Remer Michelle Akers 2 Mike Ryan
1986 7 5 0 2 13 6 April Heinrichs Marcia McDermott 4 Anson Dorrance
1987 11 6 1 4 23 9 Carin Gabarra April Heinrichs 7
1988 8 3 2 3 10 9 Joy Fawcett Carin Gabarra 5 C. Gabarra,
K. Lilly
2
1989 1 0 1 0 0 0 April Heinrichs (none) (none)
1990 6 6 0 0 26 3 Michelle Akers Michelle Akers 9 Kristine Lilly 3
1991 28 21 1 6 122 22 Michelle Akers 39 Carin Gabarra 21 World Cup (Champions)
1992 2 0 0 2 3 7 Carin Gabarra (3 players tied) 1 Tisha Venturini 2
1993 17 13 0 4 54 7 Kristine Lilly Mia Hamm 10 Michelle Akers 6
1994 13 12 0 1 59 6 Mia Hamm Michelle Akers 11 7
1995 25 21 2 2 91 17 Mia Hamm 19 Mia Hamm 18 Tony DiCicco World Cup (3rd place)
1996 24 21 2 1 80 17 Tiffeny Milbrett 13 18 Olympics (Gold medal)
1997 18 16 0 2 67 13 Mia Hamm 18 Tiffeny Milbrett 14
1998 25 22 2 1 89 12 20 Mia Hamm 20
1999 29 25 2 2 111 15 Michelle Akers Tiffeny Milbrett 21 16 World Cup (Champions)
2000 41 26 9 6 124 31 Tiffeny Milbrett Cindy Parlow 19 14 Lauren Gregg,
April Heinrichs
Olympics (Silver medal)
2001 10 3 2 5 13 15 Tiffeny Milbrett 3 2 A. Heinrichs
2002 19 15 2 2 69 11 Shannon MacMillan Shannon MacMillan 17 Aly Wagner 11
2003 23 17 4 2 58 14 Abby Wambach Abby Wambach 9 Mia Hamm 9 World Cup (3rd place)
2004 34 28 4 2 104 23 31 Mia Hamm 22 Olympics (Gold medal)
2005 9 8 1 0 24 0 Kristine Lilly Christie Welsh 7 A. Wagner,
A. Wambach
5 Greg Ryan
2006 22 18 4 0 57 10 Abby Wambach 17 Abby Wambach 8
2007 24 19 4 1 63 17 Abby Wambach 20 Kristine Lilly 8 World Cup (3rd place)
2008 36 33 2 1 84 17 Carli Lloyd Natasha Kai 15 H. O'Reilly,
A. Wambach
10 Pia Sundhage Olympics (Gold medal)
2009 8 7 1 0 12 1 Hope Solo (3 players tied) 2 Heather O'Reilly 3
2010 18 15 2 1 48 8 Abby Wambach Abby Wambach 16 Lori Lindsey 7
2011 20 13 4 3 41 17 8 L. Holiday,
M. Rapinoe
5 World Cup (2nd place)
2012 32 28 3 1 120 21 Alex Morgan Alex Morgan 28 Alex Morgan 21 P. Sundhage,
Jill Ellis
Olympics (Gold medal)
2013 16 13 3 0 56 11 Abby Wambach Abby Wambach 11 L. Holiday,
A. Wambach
6 Tom Sermanni
2014 24 16 5 3 79 15 Lauren Holiday Carli Lloyd 15 Carli Lloyd 8 T. Sermanni,
J. Ellis
2015 26 20 4 2 74 12 Carli Lloyd 18 Megan Rapinoe 10 J. Ellis World Cup (Champions)
2016 25 22 3 0 92 10 Tobin Heath C. Lloyd,
A. Morgan
17 Carli Lloyd 11 Olympics (Quarter-finals)
2017 16 12 1 3 40 13 Julie Ertz Alex Morgan 7 Megan Rapinoe 5
2018 20 18 2 0 65 10 Alex Morgan 18 12
2019 24 20 3 1 77 16 Julie Ertz Carli Lloyd 16 Christen Press 12 J. Ellis,
Vlatko Andonovski
World Cup (Champions)
2020 9 9 0 0 33 1 Sam Mewis L. Horan,
C. Press
7 L. Williams 6 V. Andonovski
2021 6 5 1 0 20 1 TBD TBD - TBD -
Total 68053678662,104424
Sources[102][103][104][105][106]

Major

The two highest-profile tournaments the U.S. team participates in are the quadrennial FIFA Women's World Cup and the quadrennial Olympic Games.

World Cup

The team has participated in every World Cup through 2019 and won a medal in each.

FIFA Women's World Cup record
Year Result Matches Wins Draws Losses GF GA Coach
1991 Champions6600255Anson Dorrance
1995 Third place6411155Tony DiCicco
1999 Champions6510183
2003 Third place6501155April Heinrichs
2007 Third place6411127Greg Ryan
2011 Runners-up6321137Pia Sundhage
2015 Champions7610143Jill Ellis
2019 Champions7700263
2023 TBD-not yet qualified
Total8/850406413838

Olympic Games

The team has participated in every Olympic tournament through 2016 and reached the gold medal game in each until 2016, when they were eliminated in the quarterfinals on a penalty shootout loss to Sweden.

Olympic Games record
Year Result Matches Wins Draws Losses GF GA Coach
1996 Gold medal541093Tony DiCicco
2000 Silver medal531195April Heinrichs
2004 Gold medal6510124
2008 Gold medal6501125Pia Sundhage
2012 Gold medal6600166
2016 5th place422063Jill Ellis
2020 Qualified000000Vlatko Andonovski
2024 TBD-not yet qualified
2028 Qualified as host
Total6/63326526325

CONCACAF Championship and Gold Cup

CONCACAF Women's Championship and Gold Cup record
Year Result Matches Wins Draws Losses GF GA Coach
1991 Champion5500490Anson Dorrance
1993 Champion3300130
1994 Champion4400161Tony DiCicco
1998Did not participate1
2000 Champion5410241April Heinrichs
2002 Champion5500241
2006 Champion220041Greg Ryan
2010 Third place5401222Pia Sundhage
2014 Champion5500210Jill Ellis
2018 Champion5500260
Total8/93937111996

1 The U.S. team directly qualified for the 1999 FIFA Women's World Cup as hosts of the event. Because of this, they did not participate in the 1998 CONCACAF Championship, which was the qualification tournament for the World Cup.

Algarve Cup

The Algarve Cup is a global invitational tournament for national teams in women's soccer hosted by the Portuguese Football Federation (FPF). Held annually in the Algarve region of Portugal since 1994, it has been one of the more prestigious women's soccer events other than the Women's World Cup and Olympic tournament,[107] and it has been nicknamed the "Mini FIFA Women's World Cup."[108] Since 2016, the SheBelieves Cup replaced it on the U.S. team's schedule.

Algarve Cup record
Year Result Matches Wins Draws Losses GF GA Coach
1994 Runners-up320161Tony DiCicco
1995 4th Place421185
1996Did not enter
1997
1998 3rd place4301106Tony DiCicco
1999 Runners-up421184
2000 Champions4400111April Heinrichs
20016th Place410359
20025th Place421186
2003 Champions422052
2004 Champions4301115
2005 Champions440090Greg Ryan
2006 Runners-up422091
2007 Champions440083
2008 Champions4400121Pia Sundhage
2009 Runners-up431051
2010 Champions440093
2011 Champions4400123
2012 3rd place4301112
2013 Champions4310111Tom Sermanni
20147th place411277
2015 Champions431071Jill Ellis
Total[109]20/227956111217262

SheBelieves Cup

The SheBelieves Cup is a global invitational tournament for national teams in women's soccer hosted in the United States.

SheBelieves Cup record
Year Result Matches Wins Draws Losses GF GA Coach
2016 Champions330041Jill Ellis
2017 4th place310214
2018 Champions321031
2019 Runners-up312054
2020 Champions330061Vlatko Andonovski
2021 Champions330090
Total6/61513322811

Tournament of Nations

The Tournament of Nations was a global invitational tournament for national teams in women's soccer hosted in the United States in non-World Cup and non-Olympic years.

Tournament of Nations record
Year Result Matches Wins Draws Losses GF GA Coach
2017 Runners-up320174Jill Ellis
2018 Champions321094
Total2/26411168

Player records

As of April 13, 2021. Active players are shown in Bold.

The women's national team boasts the first six players in the history of the game to have earned 200 caps. These players have since been joined in the 200-cap club by several players from other national teams, as well as by five more Americans: Kate Markgraf, Abby Wambach, Heather O'Reilly, Carli Lloyd and Hope Solo. Kristine Lilly and Christie Rampone are the only players to earn more than 300 caps.

In March 2004, Mia Hamm and Michelle Akers were the only two women and the only two Americans named to the FIFA 100, a list of the 125 greatest living soccer players chosen by Pelé as part of FIFA's centenary observances.

The USWNT All-Time Best XI was chosen In December 2013 by the United States Soccer Federation:

  • Goalkeeper: Briana Scurry
  • Defenders: Brandi Chastain, Carla Overbeck, Christie Rampone, Joy Fawcett
  • Midfielders: Kristine Lilly, Michelle Akers, Julie Foudy
  • Forwards: Mia Hamm, Abby Wambach, Alex Morgan[110]
Most caps
Rank Player Caps Goals Years
1 Kristine Lilly 354 130 1987–2010
2 Christie Pearce 311 4 1997–2015
3 Carli Lloyd 301 124 2005–
4 Mia Hamm 276 158 1987–2004
5 Julie Foudy 274 45 1988–2004
6 Abby Wambach 256 184 2001–2015
7 Joy Fawcett 241 27 1987–2004
8 Heather O'Reilly 231 47 2002–2016
9 Tiffeny Milbrett 206 100 1991–2005
10 Hope Solo 202 0 2000–2016

Source[111]

Most goals
Rank Player Goals Caps Years Avg
1 Abby Wambach 184 256 2001–2015 0.72
2 Mia Hamm 158 276 1987–2004 0.57
3 Kristine Lilly 130 354 1987–2010 0.37
4 Carli Lloyd 124 301 2005– 0.41
5 Alex Morgan 109 175 2010– 0.62
6 Michelle Akers 107 155 1985–2000 0.69
7 Tiffeny Milbrett 100 206 1991–2005 0.49
8 Cindy Parlow 75 158 1996–2004 0.47
9 Shannon MacMillan 60 176 1993–2005 0.34
Christen Press 144 2013– 0.42

Source[111]

Most assists
Rank Player Assists Caps Years Avg
1 Mia Hamm 145 276 1987–2004 0.53
2 Kristine Lilly 106 354 1987–2010 0.30
3 Abby Wambach 73 256 2001–2015 0.29
4 Megan Rapinoe 69 175 2006– 0.40
5 Tiffeny Milbrett 64 206 1991–2005 0.31
6 Carli Lloyd 62 301 2005– 0.20
7 Julie Foudy 55 274 1988–2004 0.20
8 Heather O'Reilly 52 231 2002–2016 0.23
9 Shannon MacMillan 50 177 1993–2005 0.28
10 Carin Jennings-Gabarra 48 119 1987–1996 0.40

Source[112][113]

Most shutouts
Rank Player Shutouts Caps Years Avg
1 Hope Solo 102 202 2000–2016 0.51
2 Briana Scurry 72 175 1994–2008 0.41
3 Alyssa Naeher 41 69 2014– 0.60
4 Nicole Barnhart 24 54 2004–2013 0.44
5 Siri Mullinix 21 45 1999–2004 0.47
6 Mary Harvey 13 27 1989–1996 0.48
Saskia Webber 28 1992–2000 0.46
8 Amy Allmann 10 24 1987–1991 0.42
9 Kim Maslin-Kammerdeiner 9 17 1988–1991 0.53
LaKeysia Beene 18 2000–2003 0.50
Ashlyn Harris 25 2013– 0.36

Sources[114][115][116][117]

Captains
Years as captain Player Caps Goals Years
1985 Denise Bender[118] 4 0 1985
1986–1987 Emily Pickering[119] 15 2 1985–1992
1988–1991 Lori Henry 39 3 1985–1991
1991 April Heinrichs[120] 46 35 1986–1991
1993–2000 Carla Overbeck[121] 170 4 1988–2000
2000–2004 Julie Foudy[122] 274 45 1988–2004
2000–2004 Joy Fawcett 241 27 1987–2004
2004–2008 Kristine Lilly 354 130 1987–2010
2008–2015 Christie Pearce 311 4 1997–2015
2016–2018 Becky Sauerbrunn[123][124] 184 0 2008–
2016–2020 Carli Lloyd[123] 301 124 2005–
2018–2020 Alex Morgan[124] 175 109 2010–
2018–2020 Megan Rapinoe[124] 175 59 2006–
2021– Becky Sauerbrunn[125] 184 0 2008–
Most goals in a match
Player Date Opponent Location Competition Line-up
Brandi Chastain April 18, 1991[126] Mexico[126] Port-au-Prince, Haiti World Cup Qualifying Tournament Substitute (41') (80 minute match)
Michelle Akers November 24, 1991[126] Chinese Taipei[126] Foshan, China 1991 FIFA World Cup Starting (80 minute match)
Tiffeny Milbrett November 2, 2002[126] Panama[126] Seattle, United States 2002 CONCACAF Gold Cup Starting
Abby Wambach October 23, 2004[126] Republic of Ireland[126] Houston, United States International Friendly Starting
Amy Rodriguez January 20, 2012[126] Dominican Republic[126] Vancouver, Canada 2012 Olympic Qualifying Tournament Substitute (46')
Sydney Leroux January 22, 2012[126] Guatemala[126] Vancouver, Canada 2012 Olympic Qualifying Tournament Substitute (46')
Crystal Dunn February 15, 2016[126] Puerto Rico[126] Frisco, United States 2016 Olympic Qualifying Tournament Starting
Alex Morgan June 11, 2019[126] Thailand[126] Reims, France 2019 FIFA World Cup Starting

Note: The goal record for most scored in a match by a member of the USWNT is five, which has been accomplished by the eight players above.

Head coaches

As of April 13, 2021
NameYearsMatchesWonDrawnLostWin %Pts÷MWorld CupOlympics
Mike Ryan 19854013.1250.25
Anson Dorrance 1986–19949366522.7372.18
Tony DiCicco 1994–199912010488.9002.67
Lauren Gregg 1997 (interim), 2000 (interim)4310.8752.5
April Heinrichs 2000–2004124872017.7822.27
Greg Ryan 2005–2007554591.9002.62
Pia Sundhage 2007–201210791106.8972.64
Tom Sermanni 2013–2014241842.8332.42
Jill Ellis 2012 (interim), 2014–2019132106197.8752.55 5th
Vlatko Andonovski 2019–present181710.9722.88
Totals6815377866.8452.48

Sources[127][128][129]

Honors

See also

  • Dare to Dream: The Story of the U.S. Women's Soccer Team – 2005 HBO documentary
  • List of United States women's national soccer team hat-tricks
  • U.S. Women's National Team Players Association
  • U.S. women's national soccer team pay discrimination claim
  • USWNT All-Time Best XI
  • National Women's Soccer League (NWSL), 2013–present
  • Soccer in the United States
  • United States men's national soccer team

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