USWNT Returns To Action With Match Against Nigeria – U.S. Soccer

After qualifying for both the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup and the 2024 Summer Olympics at the 2022 Concacaf W Championship this summer in Monterrey Mexico, the U.S. Women’s National Team returns to the field on Saturday, taking on Nigeria on September 3 at Children’s Mercy Park in Kansas City, Kansas. The match kicks off at 1:30 p.m. ET / 12:30 p.m. CT with broadcast coverage beginning at 1 p.m. ET / Noon CT on FOX.

After the conclusion of the match in Kansas City, the USA will close out its two-game set with Nigeria in Washington, D.C. in a match presented by Allstate. The teams will meet again at Audi Field, home of the Washington Spirit of the National Women’s Soccer League, on Tuesday, September 6, at 6 p.m. ET on ESPN2.

Fans will also be able to follow the action via Twitter (@USWNT), Instagram (@USWNT), Facebook and the official U.S. Soccer App.

GOALKEEPERS (3): Aubrey Kingsbury (Washington Spirit; 1), Casey Murphy (North Carolina Courage; 8), Alyssa Naeher (Chicago Red Stars; 83) 
DEFENDERS (6): Alana Cook (OL Reign; 14/0), Emily Fox (Racing Louisville FC; 17/0), Naomi Girma (San Diego Wave FC; 6/0), Sofia Huerta (OL Reign; 19/0), Hailie Mace (Kansas City Current; 3/0), Becky Sauerbrunn (Portland Thorns FC; 207/0)  
MIDFIELDERS (7): Sam Coffey (Portland Thorns FC; 0/0), Savannah DeMelo (Racing Louisville; 0/0), Lindsey Horan (Olympique Lyon, FRA; 116/25), Taylor Kornieck (San Diego Wave FC; 5/1), Rose Lavelle (OL Reign; 78/21), Kristie Mewis (NJ/NY Gotham FC; 44/7), Ashley Sanchez (Washington Spirit; 13/3), Andi Sullivan (Washington Spirit; 32/3) 
FORWARDS (6): Ashley Hatch (Washington Spirit; 11/4), Alex Morgan (San Diego Wave FC; 196/118), Mallory Pugh (Chicago Red Stars; 78/24), Midge Purce (NJ/NY Gotham FC; 19/4), Megan Rapinoe (OL Reign; 192/62), Sophia Smith (Portland Thorns FC; 21/8) 
Twenty-one of the 23 players on this roster a part of the roster that helped the USA win the 2022 Concacaf W Championship in Mexico. Defender Kelley O’Hara and forward Trinity Rodman, who both featured in the USA’s successful five-game run in Monterrey, were also initially named to the roster but O’Hara was later ruled out of camp due to a lingering hip injury while Rodman withdrew due to a family commitment. They were replaced by defender Hailie Mace and midfielder Savannah DeMelo. Defender Crystal Dunn, who gave birth to her son Marcel on May 20, is also in camp for training as she continues her return to fitness but will not feature in the matches. 
The 2022 U.S. Women’s National Team Media Guide is available for download. The Media Guide features all the history and statistic for the USWNT, as well as full bios on technical staff and the current top players, information on the USA’s Youth Women’s National Teams and general important information on U.S. Soccer.
The USWNT has a perfect record against African opposition, defeating Nigeria six times in six meetings and South Africa twice in two games. The USWNT has kept clean sheets in each of its last six games against CAF foes.  
The USWNT has several Kansas City connections on its roster for the match at Children’s Mercy Park with no one more intertwined with the city than head coach Vlatko Andonovski, who has been a Kansas City resident for 18 years. Andonovski first came to Kansas City to play professional indoor soccer with the Kansas City Comets and also five years as head coach of FC Kansas City (2013-2017), who he led to back-to-back NWSL Championships in 2014 and 2015. Two players on this USA roster played for Andonovski on FC Kanas City in team captain Becky Sauerbrunn and midfielder Kristie Mewis. Mace, who is looking to earn her first caps with the USWNT since 2018, presently plays for the Kansas City Current who are in the midst of a 12-game unbeaten streak.
With the opening match of the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup less than a year away, 22 teams have already qualified for the tournament, which has been expanded to now feature 32 teams, up from 24 in both 2015 and 2019. The nations that have already punched their tickets Down Under are co-hosts Australia and New Zealand, South Korea, Japan, China PR, Philippines and Vietnam from Asia, and Sweden, France, Denmark and Spain from Europe, the USA, Costa Rica, Canada and Jamaica from Concacaf, Zambia, Morocco, Nigeria and South Africa from Africa and Brazil, Colombia and Argentina from South America. This will be the first Women’s World Cup at any level the Philippines and Vietnam, who qualified through the AFC Asian Women’s Cup, as well as Morocco and Zambia, who qualified through the Africa Women’s Cup of Nations. Still to be filled are seven remaining slots from Europe and three slots from the 10-team playoff tournament that will feature two teams from Asia (Chinese Taipei and Thailand), two from Africa (Cameroon and Senegal), two from Concacaf (Haiti and Panama), two from South America (Chile and Paraguay), one from Oceania (Papua New Guinea) and one from Europe.
The USA has qualified for its ninth consecutive FIFA Women’s World Cup, having played in every tournament since the competition’s inception in 1991 and winning a record four titles. Brazil, Japan, Sweden and Nigeria have also qualified for a ninth Women’s World Cup and German and Norway can join that group as well if they successfully qualify for Australia/New Zealand.

The draw for the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup will be held on October 22 in Auckland as all the competing nations will find out their first round schedules and path through the tournament.

The USA also qualified for an eighth consecutive Summer Olympics by virtue of its 1-0 win over Canada in the Concacaf W Championship final. The USA, Sweden and Brazil are the only nations to appear in every edition of the Olympic Women’s Football Tournament since its inception in 1996.
After playing all five games of the 2022 Concacaf W Championship in Monterrey, Mexico, the USA returns to action on home soil with a 69-game home unbeaten streak, which includes 62 wins and seven draws and has now spanned more than five years. During this home unbeaten streak, the USA has outscored its opponents 260-28, including a 127-2 margin during its last 30 matches at home, all of which have been wins save for the 0-0 draws with Czech Republic on Feb. 17 and with Korea Republic on Oct. 21, 2021. This is the second-longest home unbeaten streak in USWNT history, the longest lasting 104 games from December of 2004 to December of 2015.
The USA also enters the two-game series against Nigeria on an 11-game win streak, dating back to its second match of the year against New Zealand. During the 11-game winning streak, the USA has outscored its opposition 46-1 and has kept eight consecutive clean sheets. The current eight-game shutout streak is the team’s longest since keeping eight consecutive clean sheets to open 2020 while the current 11-game win streak is the USA’s second-longest win streak in Andonovski’s tenure.
With less than a year until the start of the 2023 World Cup in New Zealand and Australia, Saturday’s matchup against the Super Falcons kicks off a fall of high-profile matches for the USA. Following the games against Nigeria, who has also qualified for the World Cup 2023, the top-ranked Americans will travel across the pond for an October 7 meeting against recently crowned European Champions England at historic Wembley Stadium.
England won the 2022 UEFA Women’s EURO in historic fashion at Wembley Stadium on July 31, defeating Germany, 2-1, in overtime on a goal from forward Chloe Kelly in front of a record-setting crowd of 87,192 fans. Tickets for USA-England, as many as 80,000 of them, sold out in less than a day and the crowd will be the largest to ever watch the USWNT in a friendly match. The USA-England match is subject to England securing its FIFA Women’s World Cup qualification during the September international window, which they are very likely to do. England just needs to earn a point away against nearest group rivals Austria on Saturday, September 3 or, failing that, a victory at home over Luxembourg on Tuesday, September 6, to confirm their spot in Australia and New Zealand next summer. This will be the USWNT’s first visit to Wembley Stadium since the gold medal match at the 2012 Olympic Games, a 2-1 victory for the USA over Japan, and the first-ever meeting between the United States and England Women’s National Teams at London’s green cathedral of soccer
Current FIFA World Ranking: 46

CAF Ranking: 1
FIFA Country Code: NGA
2023 World Cup Qualifying: Qualified through WAFCON (4th-place finish)
World Cup appearances:  8 (1991, 1995, 1999, 2003, 2007, 2011, 2015, 2019)  
Best World Cup Finish: Quarterfinals (1999)
Record vs. USA: 0-6-0
Last Meeting vs. USA: June 16, 2021 (USA won, 2-0 in Austin, Texas)
Coach: Randy Waldrum (USA)

Goalkeepers (2): 16-Chiamaka Nnadozie (Paris F.C, FRA), 1-Christy Ohiaeriaku (Edo Queens F.C.)
Defenders (7): 3-Osinachi Ohale (Deportivo Alaves, ESP), 8-Rofiat Adenike Imuran (Rivers Angels F.C.), 11-Akudo Ogbonna (Edo Queens F.C.), 17-Nicole Payne (West Virginia University, USA), 4-Glory Ogbonna (ALG Spor, TUR), 12-Michelle Alozie (Houston Dash, USA), 5-Blessing Demehin (Rivers Angel F.C.)
Midfielders (6): 7-Toni Payne (Sevilla F.C, ESP), 13-Christy Ucheibe (SL Benfica, POR), 10-Amanda Mbadi (Atasehir Belediyespor, TUR), 18-Onyi Echegini (Florida State University, USA), 19-Deborah Abiodun (Rivers Angel F.C.), 20-Esther Onyenezide (FC Robo Queens)
Forwards (5): 6-Uchenna Kanu (Tigres UANL, MEX), 15-Rasheedat Ajibade (Atletico Madrid, ESP), 14-Vivian Ikechukwu (FC Gintra, LTU), 2-Gift Monday (FC Robo Queens F.C), 9-Ifeoma Onumonu (NJ/NY Gotham FC, USA) 
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