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Atlanta's Lloyd and Mitts Selected for World Cup Roster

May 10, 2011 - Women's Professional Soccer (WPS) - Atlanta Beat News Release


KENNESAW, GA - (May 9, 2011) - With 50 days until the USA's opening match of the 2011 FIFA Women's World Cup, U.S. Women's National Team head coach Pia Sundhage has named the Atlanta Beat's Heather Mitts and Carli Lloyd to roster of 21 players who will represent the United States on women's soccer's grandest stage.

Lloyd joins five others who are set for their second Women's World Cup after making their first World Cup team in 2007. The Atlanta Beat midfielder leads the USA in scoring with five goals this year and 27 scored internationally. She has started in four of five Atlanta Beat games and has scored three goals in Women's Professional Soccer action this season. On April 16, Lloyd scored the game-winner against Sky Blue FC before scoring the second game-tying goal against the Western New York Flash on April 24.

Atlanta Beat defender Mitts will be attending her first Women's World Cup after a knee injury sidelined her for the event in 2007. Mitts is a two-time Olympic gold medalist who has overcome hamstring issues that have limited her to just one match with the U.S. squad this year. She is also one of five players making their first World Cup appearance in 2011 who were also a part of the 2008 Olympic gold medal winning team in Beijing. Mitts has started and played in four games for the Atlanta Beat this season.

Of the 11 players who started the 2008 Olympic gold medal game, eight were named to this Women's World Cup roster. The 2011 U.S. Women's World Cup Team is an experienced side with an average age of just over 27 years old. The roster, which features three goalkeepers, seven defenders, seven midfielders and four forwards, is a product of nearly three years of player evaluation during which Sundhage and her staff saw the U.S. Women play 34 international matches in 2009, 2010 and 2011, conduct numerous training camps around the country and the world, and watch dozens of WPS matches. Since the 2008 Olympics, Sundhage has called up approximately 50 players for training camps and international games before settling on her final roster.

The 2011 U.S. Women's World Cup Team finished a three-week training camp in Florida last Friday and arrived in Columbus, Ohio, on Monday to begin training for a two-game series against fellow Women's World Cup qualifier Japan taking place on May 14 at Columbus Crew Stadium (6:30 p.m. ET on FOX Soccer and FOX Deportes) and May 18 at WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary, N.C. (7 p.m. ET on ESPN2).

The USA will play its Women's World Cup Send-Off Match on June 5 at Red Bull Arena in Harrison, N.J. (2 p.m. ET on ESPN2) before the players go on a break. The U.S. team will leave for Austria in mid-June for a pre-Women's World Cup training camp.

The USA, which has been drawn into Group C with Korea DPR, Colombia and Sweden, opens its tournament on June 28 in Dresden against the Koreans in a match that will be broadcast live on ESPN at 11:45 a.m. ET.

2011 FIFA WOMEN'S WORLD CUP ROSTER

UNITED STATES

No. Players Pos. Ht. Birthdate Hometown Club Caps/Goals

1 Solo, Hope** GK 5-9 07/30/81 Richland, Wash. magicJack 92

2 Mitts, Heather* D 5-5 06/09/78 Cincinnati, Ohio Atlanta Beat 115/2

3 Rampone, Christie**** D 5-6 06/24/75 Point Pleasant, N.J. magicJack 234/4

4 Sauerbrunn, Becky* D 5-7 06/06/85 St. Louis, Mo. magicJack 8/0

5 Tarpley, Lindsay** M 5-6 09/22/83 Kalamazoo, Mich. magicJack 124/32

6 LePeilbet, Amy* D 5-6 03/12/82 Crystal Lake, Ill. Boston Breakers 47/0

7 Boxx, Shannon*** M 5-8 06/29/77 Redondo Beach, Calif. magicJack 143/22

8 Rodriguez, Amy* F 5-4 02/17/87 Lake Forest, Calif. Philadelphia Independence 62/15

9 O'Reilly, Heather** M 5-5 01/02/85 East Brunswick, N.J. Sky Blue FC 141/28

10 Lloyd, Carli** M 5-8 07/16/82 Delran, N.J. Atlanta Beat 108/27

11 Krieger, Ali* D 5-5 07/28/84 Dumfries, Va. Out of contract 15/0

12 Cheney, Lauren* F 5-8 09/30/87 Indianapolis, Ind. Boston Breakers 39/13

13 Morgan, Alex* F 5-7 07/02/89 Diamond Bar, Calif. Western New York Flash 16/7

14 Cox, Stephanie** D 5-6 04/03/86 Elk Grove, Calif. Boston Breakers 71/0

15 Rapinoe, Megan* M 5-7 07/05/85 Redding, Calif. Philadelphia Independence 28/10

16 Lindsey, Lori* M 5-5 03/19/80 Indianapolis, Ind. Philadelphia Independence 19/0

17 Heath, Tobin* M 5-6 05/29/88 Basking Ridge, N.J. Sky Blue FC 25/2

18 Barnhart, Nicole** GK 5-10 10/10/81 Gilbertsville, Pa. Philadelphia Independence 39

19 Buehler, Rachel* D 5-5 08/26/85 Del Mar, Calif. Boston Breakers 56/1

20 Wambach, Abby*** F 5-11 06/02/80 Rochester, N.Y. magicJack 154/117

21 Loyden, Jill* GK 5-10 05/25/85 Vineland, N.J. magicJack 1

* First Women's World Cup

** Second Women's World Cup

*** Third Women's World Cup

**** Fourth Women's World Cup

U.S. Women's National Team Roster by Position

GOALKEEPERS (3): Nicole Barnhart (Philadelphia Independence), Jill Loyden (magicJack), Hope Solo (magicJack)

DEFENDERS (7): Rachel Buehler (Boston Breakers), Stephanie Cox (Boston Breakers), Ali Krieger (out of contract), Amy LePeilbet (Boston Breakers), Heather Mitts (Atlanta Beat), Christie Rampone (magicJack), Becky Sauerbrunn (magicJack)

MIDFIELDERS (7): Shannon Boxx (magicJack), Tobin Heath (Sky Blue FC), Lori Lindsey (Philadelphia Independence), Carli Lloyd (Atlanta Beat), Heather O'Reilly (Sky Blue FC), Megan Rapinoe (Philadelphia Independence), Lindsay Tarpley (magicJack)

FORWARDS (4): Lauren Cheney (Boston Breakers), Alex Morgan (Western New York Flash), Amy Rodriguez (Philadelphia Independence), Abby Wambach (magicJack)

2011 U.S. WOMEN'S WORLD CUP ROSTER BIO SHORTS

Career WWC Stats = Games Played/Games Started, Minutes, Goals, Assists

GOALKEEPERS (3)

NICOLE BARNHART - #18 (Second Women's World Cup) - Career WWC Stats: 0/0, 0, GA-0, Record: 0-0-0, GAA: 0.00

Played a key role for the USA in 2010 and 2011 when she stepped into goal as the starter in the absence of Hope Solo (who was recovering from a shoulder injury) and helped the USA qualify for the Women's World Cup. Tall, strong and athletic, her experience and confidence add a commanding presence to perhaps the strongest goalkeeping trio in the tournament. She has a 26-3-3 all-time record in the nets for the USA.

JILL LOYDEN - #21 (First Women's World Cup) - Career WWC Stats: n/a

Loyden has developed into a solid professional with an excellent training ethic after a stellar college career at Villanova. She recovered from a badly broken hand suffered last January to win the third goalkeeper spot on the World Cup roster where she will back-up the last two WPS Goalkeepers of the Year. Aggressive and brave in the penalty box, she earned her first and thus far only cap for the USA in a win against China in October of 2010.

HOPE SOLO - #1 (Second Women's World Cup) - Career WWC Stats: 4/4, 360, GA: 2, Record: 3-0-1, GAA: 0.50

Solo recovered from major shoulder surgery last September to earn her place on the squad. Widely hailed as one of top goalkeepers in the world with an unparalleled kicking game, she underwent months of painful rehabilitation to get to this point and has been training and playing full out since the middle of March. Solo is second all-time in U.S. history in caps, wins and shutouts for a GK. She has lost just one game in goal for the USA in the past six years.

DEFENDERS (7)

RACHEL BUEHLER - #19 (First Women's World Cup) -- Career WWC Stats: n/a

The rugged defender is a fearless ball-winner who has done her best work for the USA in the center of the defense. She has featured in 32 of the USA's 33 matches from 2009 to the present and scored her first career goal in the CONCACAF Women's World Cup Qualifying Tournament. The future medical school student was named the USA's co-captain by Sundhage in 2010 and is known for being a model professional with a tremendous work ethic.

STEPHANIE COX - #14 (Second Women's World Cup) - Career WWC Stats: 6/6, 495, 0G, 0A

One of the breakout players of the 2007 FIFA Women's World Cup as Stephanie Lopez, the since married Cox is one of the USA's most experienced defenders. Able to play on either flank, she's seen most of her time on the left where her calmness under pressure and comfort with the ball have benefited the team in keeping possession and building the attack. Totally two-footed, her services from the wings and passing over distance could be of great benefit during the tournament.

ALI KRIEGER - #11 (First Women's World Cup) - Career WWC Stats: n/a

Fresh off a four-year stint in Germany for one of Europe's top clubs -- FFC Frankfurt - Krieger won league, cup and European titles in 2008. The powerful defender made her debut in Pia Sundhage's first match as head coach of the USA in 2008, but due to injuries and club commitments she has played just 13 international games over the past three years. A popular player in Frankfurt, Krieger is the only U.S. player who speaks any German and she speaks it almost fluently.

AMY LEPEILBET - #6 (First Women's World Cup) - Career WWC Stats: n/a

LePeilbet was a likely selection for the 2007 FIFA Women's World Cup Team, but missed out after tearing her ACL in 2006. It took her several years to regain full fitness and work her way back into the national team picture, but she has been one of the USA's best and most consistent players over the past two years. Usually a central defender, she has also seen time on the flanks and that versatility could be on display in Germany.

HEATHER MITTS - #2 (First Women's World Cup) - Career WWC Stats: n/a

One of the USA's most veteran players, the gutsy Mitts earned her first cap in 1999. From 2004-2010 she played in almost every game the USA played, starting most of them, almost exclusively at right back. She has had some injury issues in 2011 from which she has recovered fully, and after playing more than 100 times against some of the world's best teams in some huge matches, Mitts is surely a valuable player to have on the roster.

CHRISTIE RAMPONE - #3 (Fourth Women's World Cup) - Career WWC Stats: 11/10, 858, 0G, 0A

The U.S. captain is still one of her country's fastest, strongest and most tenacious players. The central defender will be playing in her seventh world championship and will likely pass Joy Fawcett to move into fourth place on the USA's all-time caps list during the Women's World Cup. The only mother on the team, she has two daughters and has rebounded strong from both pregnancies to seal her place as one of the most legendary players in U.S. history.

BECKY SAUERBRUNN - #4 (First Women's World Cup) -- Career WWC Stats: n/a

The tenacious and skillful Sauerbrunn, who was a captain for the USA at the U-19 level, has shown the ability to play in the center and on the outside. She made her debut in Pia Sundhage's first match in 2008, but was out of the national team picture until last fall when she was a late replacement in a training camp due to an injury to another player. She took full advantage of the opportunity to earn a spot on the Women's World Cup qualifying roster and now the World Cup Team.

MIDFIELDERS (7)

SHANNON BOXX - #7 (Third Women's World Cup) - Career WWC Stats: 10/9, 782, 3G, 0A

Boxx has been one of the best defensive-oriented midfielders in the world since her excellent performance at the 2003 FIFA Women's World Cup, but has also been a vitally important part of the U.S. attack for her scoring (22 career goals) and ability to set the team's ball-possession rhythm. She has become a consistent presence in the center midfield, starting 137 of her 143 career caps, and her partnership with Carli Lloyd in the middle is a key to U.S. success.

TOBIN HEATH - #17 (First Women's World Cup) - Career WWC Stats: n/a

One of the USA's best and most crafty dribblers, she is the second youngest player on the World Cup roster and adds depth on either flank. Perhaps the USA's most skillful player, she has bounced back from a trying 2010 in which she suffered from illness and a broken ankle, but she is back at full fitness and ready to add her unique talents to the U.S. effort. She was the youngest player on the 2008 Olympic gold medal team.

LORI LINDSEY - #16 (First Women's World Cup) - Career WWC Stats: n/a

One of the best possessors of the ball on the U.S. team, she has been in the national team program for years, but only in 2010 did she carve out a consistent role through her excellent work rate, superb passing, and willingness to sacrifice for the team. The central midfielder led the USA in assists in 2010 with seven despite playing less than half the minutes available last year.

CARLI LLOYD - #10 (Second Women's World Cup) - 5/3, 252, 0G, 0A

The USA's attacking midfielder possesses some rare qualities in her ability to beat players on the dribble and to strike on goal from distance. As fit as she's ever been, Lloyd is a key cog in the USA's attack and is looking to make a major impact in her second Women's World Cup. She scored the winning goal in the 2008 Olympic gold medal in overtime and among her 27 career goals are several that have been both clutch and spectacular.

HEATHER O'REILLY - #9 (Second Women's World Cup) - Career WWC Stats: 6/5, 442, 2G, 0A

Displaying one of the best work rates in the world, O'Reilly has been thundering up and down the right flank for the U.S. team since 2002 when she was only 17. At the beginning of this year she broke the U.S. record for most consecutive games played with 63. She had an excellent 2007 FIFA Women's World Cup, scoring twice including a key goal in the opening match draw against North Korea, and in the past four years has developed into one of the team leaders.

MEGAN RAPINOE - #15 (First Women's World Cup) -- Career WWC Stats: n/a

One of the team's best goal scorers and craftiest players, Rapinoe saw the early part of her career stalled by knee injuries, but over the past year or so she has developed into a true scoring threat for the USA. She set up the clinching goal in second leg of the USA's two-game playoff series against Italy to earn a berth to the Women's World Cup and can strike on goal equally well with both feet.

LINDSAY TARPLEY - #5 (Second Women's World Cup) - Career WWC Stats: 3/1, 105, 0G, 1A

One of the most versatile players in U.S. history, she is able to play almost every position in the U.S. midfield as well as at forward and has in fact played in all those spots over her nine-year international career. Tarpley has rounded into shape at just the right time to make her second World Cup roster after being sidelined by an ACL injury in 2009 and part of 2010. She is playing with strength and confidence, which combined with her willingness to play any role asked of her, give the USA valuable depth.

FORWARDS (4)

LAUREN CHENEY - #12 (First Women's World Cup) - Career WWC Stats: n/a

The USA's best post-up player has shown an ability to impact the game off the bench and in a starting role, which gives Pia Sundhage flexibility in choosing lineups. Cheney is strong into physical battles, but also an excellent passer in the attacking third and has shown the ability to partner well with whoever is on the forward line with her. Nine of Cheney's 13 career goals have come over 2010 and 2011.

ALEX MORGAN - #13 (First Women's World Cup) - Career WWC Stats: n/a

The USA's youngest player has shown an ability to come off the bench and make an immediate impact. One of the USA's fastest players and hardest runners, she has scored seven times in her first 16 caps. She scored a vitally important goal in the first leg of the USA's two-game playoff series with Italy, finding the net four minutes into stoppage time in Padova, Italy, to give the Americans a crucial 1-0 victory heading back home for the second leg.

AMY RODRIGUEZ - #8 (First Women's World Cup) - Career WWC Stats: n/a

Rodriguez has loads of international experience, having played in two FIFA youth Women's World Cups and the 2008 Olympics, where she started the last five matches of the tournament. She has 62 career caps. Her tremendous speed always causes problems for opponents as she can certainly stretch any defense. One of the USA's best scrappers in the box, she scored the lone goal in the second leg of the USA's two-game playoff against Italy, a 1-0 victory, that clinched the berth to Germany.

ABBY WAMBACH - #20 (Third Women's World Cup) -- Career WWC Stats: 12/11, 962, 9G, 1A

One of the world's best players in the air, she is currently the fourth all-time leading scorer in international soccer history. The USA's emotional leader was her country's leading scorer in the past two Women's World Cup tournaments, and the 2004 Olympics, but she missed Beijing 2008 due to a broken leg. Her ability to wear down defenses with her physical play, aerial game and hard running has long been a key to the USA's success.

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