The painful elimination of the United States women’s team from the 2023 Australia-New Zealand World Cup has profoundly affected the nature of women’s soccer in the nation of the Stars and Stripes, as they entered the tournament with the dream of finishing third in the championship and had to return empty-handed. They return to action this week in two friendlies against South Africa.
Sweden’s departure from the World Cup in the round of 16 resulted in Vlatko Andonovski leaving the technical management of the USWNT, so these preparatory games represent a new beginning for the four-time champion of the most important tournament in the world footballer; Likewise, they will serve as historical figures like Megan Rapinoe and Julie Ertz end their time as senior selections.
This Monday they started training to face the South Africans on Thursday September 21st and Sunday September 24th. The games will take them to TQL Stadium in Cincinnati and Soldier Field in Chicago, respectively. The meeting point for the Americans is the first of the cities already mentioned and it is expected that there will be an authentic party atmosphere to pay tribute to their football players.
Although Rose Lavelle is unable to take part in the friendly matches, she is in the US camp to be examined by medical staff as she recovers from an injury. The OL Reign member told the media: “It’s a reason for joy but at the same time for sadness (the retirement of Rapinoe and Ertz), they had amazing careers and it was an honor to share them with them.”
New beginning towards Paris 2024
The USWNT will be moving toward the next goal on their horizon: winning the gold medal again at the 2024 Paris Olympics, and this Thursday will provide them with a great stage to start on the right foot. Under the leadership of interim strategist Twila Kilgore, the North Americans will try to bring joy to their fans in “Cincy”.