FIFA World Cup

Newest USWNT prospects from NWSL and NCAA

The United States Women’s National Team (USWNT) is gearing up to get back on the field for the first time since March. They have a match scheduled for Nov. 27 against the Netherlands, a rematch of the 2019 FIFA World Cup final. The event will kick start the seven months they have to prepare for Tokyo 2021.  

While the team will likely take most of their roster that played in the World Cup, the USWNT staff have their eyes on a few uncapped players who are well-known names in the NWSL and NCAA. 

Bethany Balcer, OL Reign

Balcer scored two goals in two matches for the Reign in this year’s Fall Series. In her first season as a professional player in 2019, she scored six goals and two assists, and was also named league rookie of the year.

Aubrey Bledsoe, Washington Spirit 

An excellent shot-stopper, Bledsoe has a sharp ability when it comes to using her feet. Bledsoe has incredible composure on the ball. In 2019 she ranked first in the league with 84 saves, naming her NWSL goalkeeper of the year .

Mia Fishel, UCLA 

One of the youngest players invited to the USWNT, Fishel has a lot to bring. She scored 13 goals in the 2020 CONCACAF U-20 Championships, winning the Golden Boot Award. During her time at UCLA, Fishel had 42 assists in three seasons including 15 during the 2019 season.

Naomi Girma, Stanford 

Girma won the NCAA championship in 2019. She was also the captain for the USA U-17 national team in 2016. In the 2019 regular season at Stanford, she had two goals and one assist. 

Sarah Gorden, Chicago Red Stars 

While playing for Chicago in 2019, Gordon had a major role in helping the team reach the NWSL final for the first time ever. During her junior year at DePaul, Gorden helped set a record of a 20-game unbeaten streak. 

Shea Groom, Houston Dash 

Groom is a player that stood out to the NWSL. With her ability to penetrate on a dribble, Groom can go undetected by the opposition’s defensive line. She had a career ratio of 0.55 goals per game, scoring six goals in 11 games this 2020 season.

Jaelin Howell, Florida State 

A strong tackler, Howell is a force to be reckoned with. She plays a sharp defense, when cutting off opposition attacks and intercepting passes. She was named United Soccer Coaches Youth National Player of the Year in 2017.

Catarina Macario, Stanford 

A talented attacker, Macario brings a large set of skills to the international stage. She scored all four of the U-23s’ goals in 2018 against NWSL competition. She has a Stanford career of 63 goals and 47 assists.

Ashley Sanchez, Washington Spirit 

Sanchez is an extremely skilled dribbler with many quick shots. She forces defenders to prepare how to engage her with her dribbling ability. She set more career assists at UCLA with 42 in three seasons. During the United States’ title-winning run in the CONCACAF U-17 Women’s Championship she won the Golden Ball for best player at the tournament.

Sophia Smith, Portland Thorns 

Smith has impeccable footwork making it look as if she’s gliding on the grass. She was drafted No. 1 overall to the Portland Thorns in the 2020 National Women’s Soccer League College Draft.

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