The United States’ first game of the year against Canada is on Jan. 31 at Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas. Of the 28 players set to report to U.S. Soccer’s National Training Center in Carson, Calif., this week (Jan. 8), two are Sky Blue FC women: Goalkeeper Jill Loyden and defender Christie Rampone.
The camp will include six full days of training and then Sermanni will choose a roster for the first match of the year on Jan 31.
Twenty-Five of the players named by head coach Tom Sermanni for the Women’s National Team roster, January training camp, also attended the USA’s two-week December camp.
“Our two-week December training camp was extremely productive and valuable, and the week in January will help sharpen our players up after the holiday break,” said Sermanni. “Fortunately, we had quite a few players who performed well in 2013 and we head into 2014 with a lot of options all over the field. We’re looking forward to getting a quality start to a year that will end with World Cup qualifying.”
Midfielders Megan Rapinoe and Morgan Brian have been called up as replacements, with the other addition being goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris. So what happened to Sky Blue’s 27-year-old goalkeeper, Brittany Cameron, you might ask? (Cameron was voted player of the month for May in 2013; see this Big Apple Soccer report).
Cameron wound up being released from camp and Loyden was chosen as one of the goalkeepers scheduled to continue. (During the 2013 season Cameron would have been Sky Blue’s backup keeper, but Loyden broke her hand before the season started. Cameron finished 2nd in the NWSL in both goals against average (0.95) and shutouts (8). The two girls are still very close friends and support each other.
The WNT match on Jan. 31 represents the 51st meeting between the USA and Canada. Women from all nine NWSL clubs appear on the roster; FC Kansas City has the most at five.
Five players on the training camp roster were allocated to NWSL clubs for the upcoming season, including: Yael Averbuch (Washington Spirit), Stephanie Cox (Seattle Reign FC), Whitney Engen (Houston Dash), Meghan Klingenberg (Boston Breakers) and Christen Press (Chicago Red Stars).