Looking at a post-World Cup USWNT
The World Cup is over, the Olympics are in 10 months, and the USWNT is without a permanent head coach. Kelley O’Hara and Rose Lavelle are nursing injuries, Megan Rapinoe and Julie Ertz are saying their final farewells, and there are three uncapped players in camp.
So what does this mean for the USWNT’s September camp?
It means the young bucks are in charge, there’s little to lose but plenty to gain, and the pressure valve on those with limited to no experience has been released ever so slightly.
Sophia Smith, Mallory Swanson, Trinity Rodman…these standout big guns will be around for a long time, but as they lead us into a new, younger era, who will round out this fledgling edition of the USWNT?
There’s always pressure to prove yourself any time you’re called up for the red, white, and blue, but there will be few opportunities as ideal for new players to work off the jitters and hopefully dazzle than this September camp.
Coming off of a disappointing World Cup and a drop in FIFA rankings, the USWNT is looking to rebuild. So young talent? The coaches are looking at you.
The Olympics are peeking out around the corner while still being far enough away to eliminate the “this camp determines if all my wildest dreams of an Olympic gold medal will come true” anxiety.
Yes, the players are being evaluated by the coaching staff, but until the new head coach is appointed they don’t have to worry about fitting the specific coaching style of the mighty hand that will determine their future on the USWNT.
They can just be themselves, learn the ropes, add to their resume, celebrate their teammates who are moving on to new life chapters that don’t involve running your body into the ground for the love of a game (worth it!), and hope they’ve left enough of an impression along the way to warrant a call back when the new boss is in place.
So fans, for this month, sit back and relax.
Give the USWNT their moment to rebuild. Lift up the new talent finding their footing and cheer loud for the veterans who kept the USWNT at the top of the rankings for more years than one country should be able to hold that title.
Here’s to growing pains and new faces to get excited for. Buckle up and embrace it all.