Wednesday Roundup: Nine USWNT players named to Women’s World XI shortlist

The Equalizer Staff February 22, 2017 134

Also in today’s roundup, Herdman announces Canada’s Algarve Cup squad, Portland re-signs Menges and Shim, the U.S. U-18 WNT continues to win in England and Cal alumna Emma Fletcher heads to Norway

Alex Morgan and Marta were two of 55 players named to FIFPro's Women's World XI shortlist. (Photo Copyright Patricia Giobetti for The Equalizer)

Alex Morgan and Marta were two of 55 players named to FIFPro’s Women’s World XI shortlist. (Photo Copyright Patricia Giobetti for The Equalizer)

FIFPro, the world player union, released its shortlist for the 2016 Women’s World XI. The list consists of 55 players from 22 different countries that were voted on by more than three thousand female players from around the world.

The voters selected one goalkeeper, four defenders, three midfielders and three “attackers,” or forwards. The players with the most votes were named to the shortlist from which the Women’s World XI will later be selected.

Nine players from the USWNT were named to the shortlist: goalkeeper Hope Solo; defenders Julie Johnston, Meghan Klingenberg, Ali Krieger and Becky Sauerbrunn; midfielders Tobin Heath, Carli Lloyd and Megan Rapinoe; and forward Alex Morgan. Canadian captain Christine Sinclair and defender Kadeisha Buchanan were also named to the list.

The United States boasts the most players on the list, while France follows with eight and Germany with six. All six of Germany’s included players were on the Olympic gold medal-winning squad last summer. The club with the most included players is Olympique Lyonnais, who has 11 players on the list.

This is the second year FIFPro has named a Women’s World XI. Nine of last year’s XI were once again named to the shortlist, with only Celia Sasic (retired) and Aya Miyama (injury) not making the cut.

FIFPRO WOMEN’S WORLD XI SHORTLIST BY POSITION

Goalkeepers: Katarzyna Kiedrzynek (Poland, Paris Saint-Germain), Hedvig Lindahl (Sweden, Chelsea), Andreea Paraluta (Romania, Atletico), Tinja-Riikka Korpela (Finland, FC Bayern Munich), Hope Solo (USA, Free agent)

Defenders: Lucy Bronze (England, Manchester City), Kadeisha Buchanan (Canada, Olympique Lyonnais), Stephanie Catley (Australia, Melbourne City), Nilla Fischer (Sweden, VfL Wolfsburg), Sara Gama (Italy, ACF Brescia), Laura Georges (France, Paris Saint-Germain), Stephanie Houghton (England, Manchester City), Julie Johnston (USA, Chicago Red Stars), Meghan Klingenberg (USA, Portland Thorns), Tabea Kemme (Germany, 1. FFC Turbine Potsdam), Ali Krieger (USA, Orlando Pride), Leonie Maier (Germany, FC Bayern Munich), Amel Majri (France, Olympique Lyonnais), Griedge M’Bock (France, Olympique Lyonnais), Wendie Renard (France, Olympique Lyonnais), Irene Paredes (Spain, Paris Saint-Germain), Ali Riley (New Zealand, FC Rosengard), Line Roddik Hansen (Denmark, FC Barcelona), Becky Sauerbrunn (USA, FC Kansas City), Marta Torrejon (Spain, FC Barcelona)

Midfielders: Camille Abily (France, Olympique Lyonnais), Melanie Behringer (Germany, FC Bayern Munich), Veronica Boquete (Spain, Paris Saint-Germain), Sara Björk Gunnarsdottir (Iceland, VfL Wolfsburg), Pernille Harder (Denmark, VfL Wolfsburg), Tobin Heath (USA, Portland Thorns), Jenni Hermoso (Spain, FC Barcelona), Amandine Henry (France, Paris Saint-Germain), Saki Kumagai (Japan, Olympique Lyonnais), Carli Lloyd (USA, Manchester City), Dzsenifer Marozsan (Germany, Olympique Lyonnais), Marta (Brazil, FC Rosengard), Claudia Neto (Portugal, Linköpings FC), Megan Rapinoe (USA, Seattle Reign), Caroline Seger (Sweden, Olympique Lyonnais)

Attackers: Andressa Alves (Brazil, FC Barcelona), Ramona Bachmann (Switzerland, Chelsea), Cristiane (Brazil, Paris Saint-Germain), Shirley Cruz (Costa Rica, Paris Saint-Germain), Caroline Graham Hansen (Norway, VfL Wolfsburg), Ada Hegerberg (Norway, Olympique Lyonnais), Eugenie Le Sommer (France, Olympique Lyonnais), Vivianne Miedema (Netherlands, Bayern), Anja Mittag (Germany, VfL Wolfsburg), Alex Morgan (USA, Olympique Lyonnais), Louisa Necib (France, Retired), Alexandra Popp (Germany, VfL Wolfsburg), Alexia Putellas (Spain, FC Barcelona), Lotta Schelin (Sweden, FC Rosengard), Christine Sinclair (Canada, Portland Thorns)

Herdman names Canada’s Algarve Cup roster

John Herdman has named 22-player squad for next month's Algarve Cup. (Photo: Canada Soccer)

John Herdman has named 22-player squad for next month’s Algarve Cup. (Photo: Canada Soccer)

Canada women’s national team head coach John Herdman has named his 22-player Algarve Cup roster ahead of next month’s tournament. Canada is the defending champions of the tournament and, with Herdman’s squad, has a very good chance of repeating.

“This tournament will be our first opportunity to play consecutive competitive fixtures since the 2016 Rio Olympics and a chance to get our whole squad back together. The focus will be on winning the tournament, by firstly shaking off some rust and then pushing to recreate the tactical cohesion and off-field chemistry we saw in Rio,” said Herdman. “We have six new additions to our squad, players who showed well on our assessment camp and who will add depth to key positions and challenge the Olympic core players for places. This is a fast paced tournament where we will face one day turnarounds between games, so we will need to hit the ground running and maintain a high pace if we want to win back-to-back Algarve titles.”

{RELATED: Canada to host Costa Rica in June | SheBelieves Cup rosters released}

Those six new players include seventeen-year-old Sarah Stratigakis, who received her first start in her first cap in the Bronze Medal Celebration match against Mexico, and Washington Spirit draft pick Lindsey Agnew. They are two of a number of players who have come to the team through Canada’s EXCEL program.

Noticeable roster absences are that of Diana Matheson and Josée Bélanger. Matheson was left off as she continues recovering from injuries that also kept her off of Canada’s Bronze Medal Celebration roster earlier this month. Bélanger, on the other hand, has only made sporadic appearances for Canada recently, so her absence is not a surprise. 

Canada kicks off Algarve Cup group play against Denmark on March 1. They then take on Russia on March 3 before closing out group play against host Portugal on March 6. The Algarve Cup final will be played on March 8. 

CANADA ROSTER BY POSITION

Goalkeepers (3): Sabrina D’Angelo (North Carolina Courage), Stephanie Labbé (Washington Spirit), Kailen Sheridan (Sky Blue FC)

Defenders (5): Kadeisha Buchanan (Olympique Lyonnais), Allysha Chapman (Boston Breakers), Rebecca Quinn (Duke), Hannah Taylor (Eastside FC), Shelina Zadorsky (Washington Spirit)

Midfielders (6): Jessie Fleming (UCLA), Ashley Lawrence (Paris Saint-Germain), Deanne Rose (Scarborough GS United), Sophie Schmidt (FFC Frankfurt), Desiree Scott (FC Kansas City), Sarah Stratigakis (Aurora United FC)

Forwards (8): Lindsay Agnew (Washington Spirit), Janine Beckie (Houston Dash), Gabrielle Carle (Dynamo Québec & Québec Soccer REX), Jordyn Huitema (Vancouver Whitecaps), Alex Lamontagne (Durham United FC), Marie Levasseur (University of Memphis), Nichelle Prince (Houston Dash), Christine Sinclair (Portland Thorns FC)

Portland re-signs Menges and Shim

Portland Thorns re-signed Mana Shim (pictured) and Emily Menges for the 2017 season. (Photo copyright Meg Linehan for The Equalizer)

Portland Thorns re-signed Mana Shim (pictured) and Emily Menges for the 2017 season. (Photo copyright Meg Linehan for The Equalizer)

The Portland Thorns announced today that they have re-signed defender Emily Menges and midfielder Mana Shim.

Menges joined the Thorns in 2014 after being selected in the third round of the NWSL College Draft. She is now ranked third in club history in games started (59) and minutes played (5,301), while ranking fourth in games played (60). In 2016, she started played every minute of every match for the Thorns, helping them win the Shield and advance to the playoffs. For her exemplary performance, she was named to the 2016 NWSL Best XI and earned her first call-up to the USWNT in November.

“Emily was one of the key reasons we had such a great defensive record last season,” Mark Parsons, head coach of the Thorns, citing the Thorns’ defense that allowed the fewest goals (19) in the league during the regular season. “She made great progress throughout 2016, and I look forward to supporting her on making big strides again this season.”

{MORE: NWSL releases 2017 home openers schedule | USWNT looks to travel to Norway for friendly}

The Honolulu, Hawaii native has been with the Thorns since their inaugural season after coming to the team via open tryouts despite being drafted by the Houston Dash in the 2014 expansion draft (she was traded back just a week later during the NWSL College Draft). In her four years with the club, Shim has made 43 starts in 68 appearances, scoring 9 goals and recording 9 assists.  Last season Shim had nine starts and an assist over 14 games for the Thorns.

“Mana showed her ability to link and create while also developing her game on the defensive side in 2016,” Parsons said. “I look forward to seeing her continue this work and be ready to help the team any way she can.”

Portland begins its preseason camp on March 13 and opens at home against the Orlando Pride on Saturday, April 15.

U.S. U-18 WNT continues winning streak in England

(photo courtesy U.S. Soccer)

(photo courtesy U.S. Soccer)

On Tuesday, the United States U-18 women’s national team defeated Norway, 5-0, to embark upon a two-game winning streak in England. The team traveled overseas on February 11 for three matches, two against the host country  and one against Norway.

In the U.S. U-18’s most recent win, forward Sophia Smith scored a hat trick, and forward Summer Yates and midfielder Cori Dyke scored one goal apiece. Yates scored the game winner off a diving header in just the 12th minute of the contest, which was divided into two 40-minute halves. Smith and Dyke gave the team a 3-0 lead at the half, while Smith completed her hat trick in the second half, scoring in the 45th and 53rd minutes. 

Smith now has five goals for the trip, also scoring a brace in the U.S.’s 3-1 win over England on February 19. Yates also opened the scoring for the U.S. in that match.

The team will once again face England on Saturday, February 25 for the final match of the trip.  

Cal alum Emma Fletcher signs with Norwegian club

University of California midfielder Emma Fletcher announced Tuesday afternoon that she had signed with Arna-Bjørnar in the Toppserien, Norway’s top women’s league. Fletcher registered for the 2017 NWSL College Draft but went undrafted.

“I’m super excited,” she said. “My teammate Guro Bergsvand is from Norway. She’s told me lots of great things about the place, and it seems like a cool team.”

With the signing, Fletcher is now one of three other Golden Bears to play professionally. Teammates Ifeoma Onumonu and Arielle Ship were taken in the NWSL draft, landing with the Boston Breakers and Washington Spirit via trade, respectively.

Fletcher transferred to Cal after two years playing at LSU. At LSU she played in 38 games and scored two goals and tallied 14 assists. In her two years in California, she played in 42 games, scored 1 goal and recorded 7 assists. In her junior year she received an All-Pac Honorable Mention award.

The Victoria, British Columbia native also competed with the Canada U-20 team in the 2014 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup, helping them to advance to the quarterfinals. She also played in the 2015 Pan Pacific Games, in which Canada was eliminated in the semifinal round.

  • wosofan

    Sophie Smith coming on strong, all aboard the hype train. CHOO CHOO

    • mockmook

      I’ve never seen her play — but never let that stop me from joining the hype hover-board…

      She’s GREAT!!! 🙂

    • #1Fan

      Smith is going to have a very hard time getting the exposure she wants unless she changes her game. She is a dribble first, hold the ball, pass last player. Seems very focused on individual “glory”. A well organized defense will stop her pretty easily and then she seems to have no Plan B. She will destroy poor teams though. Problem for her is she is similar to Pugh and Sanchez but a step or 2 below. her path upwards is somewhat blocked. She was used as an impact sub in the U-17 WC.

      Looking at the goal scorers in England so far – Smith x5 Yates x2 Dyke – and given the minutes, its interesting that no other forwards have made their way to the score sheet. A feature that I have noticed of some of the YNTs is teh concentration of goals around a few players. I think this may be a sign of the type of soccer they play – the dominant personality/player takes a lot of shots and dominates the ball in attacking areas. This may work vs most teams, but Im not sure its a good basis to build better teams/ players.

      • Breakers fan

        I don’t mean to focus excessively on goals but in that picture above what jersey # is Smith? Also, what # is,Yates, Dyke?

        Then, beyond them, do you have an opinion on who *you* think are the best players on this team? (name and jersey # please if so) Just trying to do research here, get a viewpoint on who maybe to look out for. I won’t hold you to anything 5 years down the road. 🙂

        • #1Fan

          9, 10, 8 Jones is 13 – Ill take a pass on that . I dont think any of them are exceptional. Yates is skilled and Smith is good at beating players off the dribble. The rest are good, but there are similar players across the country.

          • Breakers fan

            Thanks! Understood about not wanting to name “bests”. No problem. Plenty of time ahead for me to see them. Can you relay any info on what universities some will be attending?

          • #1Fan

            to make it clear..its not that i dont want to name bests. Im telling you that i dont think any are any better than the other OR indeed several kids who are not there.

            In that picture there are 2 going to Univ of Washington, 2 UNC, ND, UCLA, UVA, 2 Penn State , Rutgers , Stanford.

          • Breakers fan

            Can you say who’s going where? If you don’t want to I’ll respect it, as it seems players do sometimes change their minds (I think), or maybe they may not want it known where they’re going, yet. Not trying to be nosy, just don’t know the etiquette, confidentiality level of this topic.

          • #1Fan

            its public

            UoW – Yates, Holmes
            UVA – Spaanstra
            Penn State – Vergura, Dyke
            UNC – Bell, Jones
            Stanford – Smith
            UCLA- Desiano
            Rutgers – McLelland
            ND – Martinez

          • Breakers fan

            Thanks a lot. More forwards for Stanford, eh?

          • guest

            Is Yates a ACM #10 or a forward? Is Spaanstra in that picture? Did she play? I now she has seen some time as a OB. Is she playing forward on this team as she did in the u17 WC?

          • #1Fan

            Spaanstra is 19 . playing up front on this team,,well the play 4-3-3 she has played wide. They seemed to be more 4411 in the WC and she played Wide Mid. spent a lot of time covering her full back 🙂 More like auxiliary O/B . Yates usually plays wide on this team

          • guest

            Who is the ACM on the 18s?

          • #1Fan

            varies.

          • Guest

            Well which players have been used in that role?

      • rkmid71

        Not commenting specifically about Smith because I haven’t seen her play. But I think what you describe is not unusual. Imo, this showcasing mentality is a large reason why teams with more than their share of those types of players don’t win. It seems to work to get them noticed by scouts, college coaches and onto the YNTs.

        The showcase mentality shifts the focus from the game to the individual. It becomes about how YOU play or how YOU look. That doesn’t reveal real talent imo. For me, it’s about how you COMPETE individually and within a team concept and show an understanding and willingness to do what it takes collectively to win. That requires individual sacrifice.

        • #1Fan

          You cannot build a successful TEAM that way, I agree. I have watched the culture in the YNTs my child has been a part of and its very interesting. They really are not teams as such , but collections of individuals who think they are alpha and dont seem to understand the concept of team sacrifice. Not surprising given that all of them are lauded in Club play for being so great. The collective acts that suffer are

          – combination play
          – team defense

          The mentality is – I have the ball ..look at what I can do with it . As opposed to I dont have the ball, let me show you what I can do without it. Kids are out there trying to make heroic plays because folks remember who scored. Thats about it. The “glue” players are given almost no recognition.

          In these teams there is a clear pecking order and its often re-inforced by the coaches instead of breaking ti down so they can see ALL the players at their best and assess accordingly. So many of these teams end up being about ego and who has the ability to dare to keep being selfish.

          If I ran a NT camp or tour abroad. EVERY player would start a game. EVERY player would play similar minutes. EVERY player would be given a chance to succeed OR fail and no player would be able to say – I did not get a chance to show what I could do.

          I dont think this happens now. I know it doesn’t. if you take a kid on a foreign tour and you give her 40 mercy minutes in the last game …you should never have taken her in the first place.

          • rkmid71

            The “glue” players not only don’t get recognized, they don’t get selected. Though Morgan Brian is sort of a glue player. Thank goodness JE finally got her in the game at the WC.

            Also, either don’t understand team sacrifice or don’t care. It’s narcissism to an extreme. Practically every word out of Lloyd’s mouth is about her personal goals, not team goals. Over and over. Never seems to change. And she’s the captain! Maybe she just learned to be that way over the years (either do it or not survive) by the culture of USWNT and YNTs. Honestly, why was Heath not taking all the free kicks and corners in the OG, especially when it really mattered versus Sweden? She was in the best form pre OG. She was zeroing in with each successive kick. Win or lose it was the right thing to do to stick with Heath. It was some combination of JE, Lloyd, Rapinoe that decided otherwise.

            Another Cruyff quote: “When you play a match, it is statistically proven that players actually have the ball 3 minutes on average So, the most important thing is: what do you do during those 87 minutes when you do not have the ball. That is what determines whether you’re a good player or not.”

            I agree about NT camps or tours abroad. Games are different than practice. I want to see what every player brings to the table in games and I would put some pressure on to win — even in scrimmages in camps. Make the teams as even as possible. I’m looking for how players compete, execute under pressure. .

            The WNT, couldn’t break down Sweden. Combining and working together hasn’t been the WNT strength. I can’t help but think Pia knew exactly how to thwart the USWNT. Sweden was big enough,.tough enough to deal with any aerial attack or corner. Make them do what they’re not good at. Let them have the ball, encourage their arrogance and then hit them on the counter where they have relatively slow players. .

          • DNG

            “The mentality is – I have the ball ..look at what I can do with it . As opposed to I dont have the ball, let me show you what I can do without it. Kids are out there trying to make heroic plays because folks remember who scored.”

            I know this isn’t related to the point about the lack of team first players but this is also so backwards with regards to great goal scorers. The best goal scorers are just about always the players who move the best and most intelligently without the ball. They score the most goals when supported by a strong team behind them. No matter how good a player is on the ball, a player like Hazard will never get close to Messi’s production because the difference in their movement off the ball.

            I definitely agree on not being able to build a true team out of a bunch of players playing hero ball.

          • #1Fan

            It comes back to the dialogue with you, Breakers fan and a few others. Its about HOW you define “best”. lloyd is not a good player to me. I dont care how many goals she scores . She is static, of poor touch and one dimensional. Is she effective? To a degree , yes. But I would argue there are players who would be a lot more effective if they were given the same rope and opportunities. Morgan, to a lesser degree, falls in the same boat to me. her movement is poor. Her runs are not sharp and predominantly the same type of run. I think a big reason you dont play her with Press or any other fwd in close support is because she does not show me that she can play well off another fwd. She is like Vardy. Wants that run in behind all the time. take that away ( and as her speed drops) and she has no real effective secondary play. She has been effective but iI think she had one outstanding year 5 years ago and has sort of backed up since.

            Best in the USA usually has to be accompanied by stats that the public understand. In soccer, thats goals. So Lloyd is great becasue she scores.

            On the YNTs – i feel the way we select is why we are now putting 16yr old CMs in to Full Camps . We have done a lousy job of developing players who can make teammates better . we rave about Sullivans impact when she cam in. Or Brians in the WC, but what i see from them are basic , simple ball moving skills that I saw FROM EVERY PLAYER ON THE JAPAN U-17 team .

            In the US , we love measurables. In soccer , we often identify size with athleticism and smaller players with technical skill. We make the picture fit our preconceived notions. We also dont value passing and vision anywhere near where we should. There are athletic forwards out there who see a pass and can make it. can set up a teammate for a tap in. I see more poor angled low pctage shots from so called top forwards on NTs and no one says anything. If the same player scores a goal , all is forgiven. Stand up Lloyd , Morgan.

            we need more players who can make plays for others and its less likely to happen as long as we keep rewarding players that do the opposite

          • rkmid71

            Passing is an art (pace, correct foot, variety) — most don’t seem to notice or appreciate the details. It’s not infrequent where a pass somewhere in the chain (that’s not the final pass that gets the assist) is the critical one to create a goal. Or do most fans pay close enough attention to appreciate how a goal was created. It’s the split second gained and quality that make the difference. To be good at it, you have to do it, want to do it, able to do it with both feet. Not something that a player has enough time to learn in NT or YNT camps. It would be interesting to see the passing stats. Passing is what binds a team together.

            Vision/awareness/soccer iq!! Probably the most underrated quality. Need players that have been lucky to have coaches that have given players freedom to make decisions from the youngest ages, allow them to make mistakes but demand they don’t repeat, and through long trial and error have refined their decision making. High iq players just learn at a faster rate than others, don’t repeat mistakes as much, can adapt to what the other team is doing, can identify the strengths and weaknesses of the other team, can play any style required to win, etc.Kind of like coaches on the field.

            Dean Smith told Michael Jordan if he didn’t pass the ball he wouldn’t play. When Jordan got to the pros he spent about 7 years trying to win games by himself. Didn’t work. Finally the lightbulb went off and he started trusting teammates, worked on making them better (Breakfast Club) and so on. 6 NBA championships. Jordan’s quote: “Talent wins games. Teamwork and intelligence wins championships.”

          • DNG

            Someone just posted an article on the Thursday round up that Snow and French have been reassigned.

          • #1Fan

            just watch. Off the back of the U-18 trip Ill bet you that Smith will be on the next u-20 trip. the management of these teams is beyond dumb.

          • Guest

            I love this post thanks. This is exactly true. I know of several players who went to ynt camps and were barely out out on the field. When they were, there was a sense that the incumbents were trying keep the ball away from them lest they make that “great play” that causes them to get a second look and possibly displace another player. If they were good enough to get called up they were good enough to be evaluated.

  • Ethan

    How on earth did Rapinoe make the shortlist?

    • guest

      FIFPro is players union, so even with just players voting name recognition (vs current form) seems to drive the shortlist

      • Steglitz49

        Indeed. Name recognition, not competence, is the name of this game.

    • FlyingSquirrel42

      You have officially poked the bear (i.e. posted about about Christen Press).

    • Steglitz49

      Name recognition. Please see my comment elsewhere.

      Given how the big Intercontinetal competition panned out there ought to have been 10 from Germany, 8 from Sweden and 6 from Canada.

    • Max

      Christen Press has done nothing for NT since she joined the team. She has only done well against tomato can teams. She is a big loser.

  • FlyingSquirrel42

    What exactly does this list represent? Are the Women’s World XI to be voted on by the FIFPro union only or by other stakeholders as well?

    • Steglitz49

      A new form of Miss World contest?

  • Steglitz49

    There are 9 from the US, 8 France, 6 Germany, 4 Sweden and 2 Canada (Sinclair and Buchanan).

    In the Intercontinental competition that mattered, the OG, Germany won gold beating Sweden 2-1 in the final so Sweden got the silver and Canada the bronze.

    Maybe 10 from Germany, 8 from Sweden and 6 from Canada would have been more fitting.

    Sweden’s were Lindahl, Fischer, Seger and Schelin — all established names — but neither Stina Blackstenius, Lisa Dahlkvist, Jessica Samuelsson nor Fridolina Rolfö.

  • newsouth

    It’s like MLB voting around these parts.

    Team Christen Press

  • Kevin

    LOL!!!

    Dunn and Pugh don’t make the list, but Krieger and Rapinoe do. What a joke.

    • Steglitz49

      Makes the FIFA POTY seem positively objective and informed.

      • Timber Dave

        Pugh doesn’t belong there yet, but leaving Dunn off is ridiculous. Maybe now that Dunn is playing in England she’ll become well known in Europe.

        Honestly, the set of US players chosen looks like a “who was good in 2015” list.

        • Steglitz49

          Crystal could still do the Double and even the English Treble. Let’s hope she and HAO slog it out though I fear that the FIFA POTY will make the grade.

          • Lineker

            She would need to win the UWCL. Winning English trophies doesn’t mean anything given how week the league is and given how unimportant the related national cups are (even for the men – remember Wenger is currently accused of not winning anything meaningful in the last 15 years)

    • Guest

      Krieger on the bench all year and Rapinoe played 1 game in 2016 LOL

      • Som Termanni

        But she scored a garbage-time goal against Portland and fouled her way into a build-up during the OG, so chances are someone probably saw her do one thing. Which is apparently plenty.

      • Steglitz49

        Got to keep that LBTGQ-crowd quiet.

    • A_Dog_Without_A_Clutch

      Pugh is not a pro. She shouldn’t be considered. Of course, FIFPRO shot themselves in the foot by allowing Buchanan in last year’s XI.

      • DNG

        I don’t remember who was selected last year but I’d argue that on merit Buchanan is not a top 2/4 center back in the world.

  • Steglitz49

    Arna-Björnar, which is the ladies team of Bergen, already has an American playing for them. Their goalie is Alyssa Giannetti. After the last season, she was named the Toppserien Goalkeeper of the Year.

  • Komodo

    Alex Morgan?🤡

    • Timber Dave

      Yeah, who’s she?

  • Kaine

    So can we drop the hype on Christen Press yet another list she is not on.

    • Max

      she is sore loser

  • Blatter

    That FIFPro’s Women’s World XI shortlist contain the most famous players not necessarily the best.
    Another terrible FIFA women’s soccer list

  • #1Fan

    These things just serve to show how little credibility WoSo has to the wider audience. Add Lloyds 2x PoY and you realize that no one is paying attention when

    a. picking the awards
    b. taking those to task who pick players who have no business being selected for basic reasons like – NOT EVEN PLAYING 🙂

    Sad

    • DNG

      Since FIFPro is basically all of the players chosing their best XI, I don’t have an issue if the players don’t wish to take their own award seriously. I think the voting process needs to be changed for awards(FIFA POTY) that the leaders of the sport(FIFA) wants us fans to care about. I think the Ballon d’or voting of restricting it to journalists that cover the game closely across the globe would be much better.

      • #1Fan

        Agreed

        • DNG

          Well the FIFPro vote gives everyone of it union members a vote right? So for this XI I’m not sure what can be done about union members not being the most informed voters. Can they take votes away from members or just not count votes for certain players? I’m not sure the members would like either of those scenarios but maybe they wouldn’t care.

          • Steglitz49

            It shows the sad state of WoSo.

            If the players themselves can’t compile a list that the fans respect, what hope is there for WoSo?

    • AlexH

      I think the list is logical in the extreme. For example the inclusion of Rapinoe shows that the Europeans banded together in order to salvage her international career so they can continue playing against her rather than somebody fit and young.

      • rkmid71

        I had the same thought about Lloyd and POTY. The Europeans want to perpetuate Lloyd as a forward, AM or whatever position she plays as long as possible, preferably up to and through 2019/2020..They might vote for someone else in 2017 just to make it look legit, but Lloyd will win again in 2018. If that doesn’t work out, then it’s still helpful to the Euros if Lloyd is playing 90′ every game as long as possible so alternatives aren’t developed. It’s like neutering the USWNT.

  • CED

    LLoyd winning and now this list shows why WoSo is not taking seriously. Rapinoe didn’t even play last year but a couple of games and she sucked in those. I could keep going all day on the ridiculousness of the list and the number of players that had crap years, but are nominated b/c they are a “name”.

    • wosofan

      And this list is the opinion of the actual players themselves.

      • DNG

        Did you agree with every captain’s vote in the FIFA POTY voting? This is basically that x10. Like a said below though the players can vote for whoever they want it’s their award.

  • Guest

    Wish Shim would go somewhere else. Another team could use her

    • Som Termanni

      Unless that team is in Hawaii, I doubt she’d go.

      • Steglitz49

        Why not a WoSo in Hawaii? If Iceland can have a LNT and New Zealand qualify by turning up, why disdain Hawaii?

  • Steglitz49
  • A_Dog_Without_A_Clutch

    This list awful.

    Does Not Belong:
    Kadeisha Buchanan
    Megan Rapinoe
    Carli Lloyd
    Alexia Putellas
    Alex Morgan
    Becky Sauerbrunn
    Julie Johnston
    Vero Bouquete
    Marta
    Ramona Bachmann
    Louisa Cadmuro
    Hope Solo
    Caroline Graham Hansen

    Questionable:
    Nilla Fischer
    Stephanie Catley

    Deserves Consideration:
    Daphne Koster
    Illaria Mauro
    Elena Linari
    Lineth Beerensteyn
    Beatriz
    Kumi Yokoyama
    Gina Lewandowski

    Should be on the list:
    Zsanett Jakabfi
    Lynn Williams
    Alyssa Naeher
    Elise Kellond-Knight
    Crystal Dunn
    Jess Fishlock
    Mizuho Sakaguchi
    Mina Tanaka

    • wosofan

      Yeah, well that’s just like your opinion man.

      • Steglitz49

        Hear hear! Verily and forsooth. Hound’s tooth.

      • mockmook

        I know!!!

        I hate people with opinions on woso — stick with facts!!! Facts like: Ohai should have been #1 on the list…

      • guest

        it is a fact. not an opinion. that megan rapinoe does not belong on this list.

      • FlyingSquirrel42

        This is not ‘Nam, this is WoSo. There are rules.

        (Steg, that’s your cue for a comment about the refereeing.)

        • Steglitz49

          It is not a list of referees.

          • FlyingSquirrel42

            I know, I was just continuing the Big Lebowski references.

          • A_Dog_Without_A_Clutch

            Jill Ellis treats objects like women!

    • DNG

      I don’t watch enough of all of these players to have a very strong opinion on many of them but I’m curious. I think you’d be right to do this but are you valuing club performance with a higher weight than NT performance?

      • A_Dog_Without_A_Clutch

        Yes. Take Huth and Islacker, because of depth at the German WNT, don’t have much of presence there, but in club play they are standouts.

        Jakabfi and Fishlock are outstanding players, but they player for weak national teams that may never make a major tournament.

        It is pretty simple to me. You can understand why FIFA might put more weight on international game since it is technically their jurisdiction. However, FIFPRO is directly about the pro game. The international game is at best a tie-breaker.

        • DNG

          The only thing I would say is that Americans who don’t play abroad in the offseason would be at a disadvantage during the major tournament years since they end up missing a lot of club matches. I definitely agree on Fishlock and a bunch of the American’s on the do not belong list. I’m curious though about Lynn Williams because you don’t have Jess Mcdonald on here and she arguably had a better season than Williams or at the very least equivalent. When available I think Sauerbrunn was the best defender for FCKC once again even if I thought she was a bit off for the NT and early in the year. Even in a down year for her, Press is probably a golden boot contender in the NWSL if she plays all 20 matches. So overall, I like the way you weighted things but those are just some other things to think about

          • A_Dog_Without_A_Clutch

            Lynn Williams was the MVP and had two important playoff goals on her 2016 resume, so that is why she stood out to me (and I can Imagine those are things that should stand out if this was proper list). However, you are right I should have put McDonald there- along with Sam Mewis, maybe Horan, Sonnett, and Nadim.

            It is pretty easy to figure out who does not belong on this list, but it hard to recall the players that deserve some recognition. Upon typing this Yulema Corres Somovilla, just popped right into my head.

            Also:
            1. Maybe I’m being too harsh on Sauerbrunn
            2. Press was extremely wasteful this year (thanks to Dames’s irresponsible mandate).

          • DNG

            Press was shockingly inefficient by her standards but the overall goal output was still better than almost everyone else in the league. She did take too many poor shots this year but I’d still take the 8 goals in 14 poor shots and all. I only partially blame that on Dames though. The 4-4-2 diamond fit their personnel better than a 4-3-3 or a 4-2-3-1 in my opinion. I think a 3-5-2 of

            ———-Press—–Huerta———-
            ——DiBernardo–Comeau——–
            Short——–Colaprico—–Gilliland
            ——Johnson–JJ–Naughton—–

            would have provided a more balanced team.

          • Steglitz49

            Women of true grit make their own luck, like Jessica Diggins and Kikkan randall just did! Sieg! Heil!!

          • Max

            Christen Press has never peaked for the National Team. She has only scored a few goals against the top teams. She only did well against the tomato can teams. She is a BIG LOSER!

          • DNG

            Where in my string of comments did I make any mention of Press’ NT play? I thought I was pretty clearly talking about her NWSL play which has virtually no overmatched opponents(Boston last year is debatable).

          • mockmook

            I like it, but I’d go:

            ———-Press—–Huerta———-
            ——DiBernardo–Colaprico——–
            Short———-Proffitt——-Gilliland
            —Johnson–Naughton—JJ——-

            This assumes that Proffitt is all that she is supposed to be.

            Oh, and unlike you, I’d use a GK 😉

          • DNG

            I think this looks like a good formation for this squad with Vasconcelos taking the year off. I really like Proffitt potentially moving Colaprico into the 8 role. Gilliland will also have more freedom to take chances and get forward as a wingback. She sometimes got pushed back having to defend some of the better wings last year.

          • Steglitz49

            You are a humbug, sir. Your list is missing a number of obvious candidates. You too a victim of name recognition and PR-campaigns.

            Go back to the drawing board!

          • A_Dog_Without_A_Clutch

            It is more like the Scandanavian Leagues are a closed environment that I have limited access to. Therefore, I can’t make too many strong assertions on who is playing well/awfully in those leagues.

          • Steglitz49

            You know who played well against the US in Brasilia, don’t you? The obvious names missing from the list are Blackstenius, Samuelsson and Dahlkvist.

            All three played excellent for their clubs.

            The list is no better compiled than the FIFA one. Worse, indeed.

          • Bill

            Thank you for trying to advance discussion.

            I can only comment on US players that imho can play with the top players at their position at the international level. i did give some halo effect for prior year performance as long as the slip off peak was not huge ( in other words maybe a down year and not a trend vs a fall off the cliff ( Solo/Rapinoe) longevity and i did bias for more fully rounded and smart players over one dimensional players ( lloyd). I only came up with Sauebrunn, Heath and Morgan for the US

          • Steglitz49

            Cut to the chase: Brunn and Long were the cause of the Bomb in Brasilia. Cut them now, not tomorrow.

          • Steglitz49

            The 2nd and 3rd rate Americans frolic about in Australia in the winter. Is that not good enough for you?

        • Steglitz49

          Mandy Islacker is immortal because of her goal at 90+2′ in the Champions League final of 2015.

          That fianl could be named the “Mandy Islacker Final” like the men¨s of 2006 is known as the “Henke Larsson Final”.

          Yeehaw! Or Mazeltov!!

    • Figgler

      Excellent post

      • Steglitz49

        No. The Dog only reveals his pig ignorance.

    • Antoni Rodriguez Esteban

      Like your summary. Not sure about Gaelle Enganamouit though. She was injured most of 2016. I also don’t think that Lotta Schelin should still be on the list. Stina Blackstenius had a much better year.

      Huth and Jakabfi were in great shape in the second half of 2016. They definitely should be on the list.

      I remember all those best players of 2016 lists from December. It was kind of all Chelsea players were on the list while the player – Jakabfi – who almost defeated Chelsea alone was not part of any of those lists.

      All those official lists and polls seems to be very US / England centric

      • Steglitz49

        English as she is spoken, dominates the web.

        “Oh, why can’t the English teach the children how to speak?
        The Norwegians are taught Norwegian, the Greeks their greek
        Why? There are even places where English has almost disappeared:
        In America they have not spoken it for years!”

    • Steglitz49

      The most obvious that should be on the list are Jessica Samuelsson, Stina Blackstenius and Lisa Dahlkvist.

      As Lincoln observed: it is better to keep silent and be thought a fool than to type and remove all doubt.

    • Guest

      Morgan is justifiable. 2 goals in OGs, top scorer at SBC (goals against Germany and France), and a high goal tally for 2016.

      • Steglitz49

        Alex is always justifiable. The Dog is certifiable.

      • A_Dog_Without_A_Clutch

        None of these stats have anything to do with the Orlando Pride and Olympique Lyonnais- which is supposed to be the bias of FIFPro recognition.

        • Ethan

          Well, contrary to popular opinion here, I thought Morgan had a decent first season with the Pride when you look at her play beyond the two main numbers, and she did not play for Lyon in 2016.

          • A_Dog_Without_A_Clutch

            I’d also agree with “decent”. “Decent” shouldn’t qualify you to be on this list.

          • Ethan

            “Decent” club season to go along with a notably more than decent international year in terms of general play and goalscoring doesn’t justify you getting on this list? Agree to disagree.

          • A_Dog_Without_A_Clutch

            Club >>>> International

          • DNG

            I’m with ADWAC here on the value of club play. Only the qualifiers and the olympics matches were meaningful for the NT last year. I think Morgan was below average in the NWSL last year in terms of top forwards. I think Kerr, Williams, Mcdonald, Press, Sinclair, Ohai, Groom, Melis were all better. That’s 8 forwards on 7 different teams and some arguments could probably be made for someone like Nadim too.

            That being said I don’t know where I would place her in my number of attackers over this last year she would probably still be in my top 15 for the year overall. But I can see how ADWAC could justify leaving her out if he is/she is heavily weighting club performance over NT performance. If the club scene in WoSo was anywhere near the men’s game and Morgan had the year for her club she had last year, no one would rate her anywhere close to the top 15.

          • Ethan

            I don’t completely agree, but fair enough. (We’ve had arguments on Morgan creating a lot of chances that weren’t finished by her teammates. More so than other players in my opinion. Granted, she definitely also had her own finishing woes.)

            I don’t completely agree with their points, but some people have made the argument that Williams and McDonald heavily benefitted from playing Boston when it came to their goalscoring. They also said Ohai benefitted from playing poor defenses (including Boston’s) in the second half of the season. Now, I don’t know if Morgan would have done any better, but she didn’t play against Boston once in the last NWSL season.

            I understand the elevation of club football over international football, and I want club football to become more prominent in the women’s game. However, you still see so many people talk about how top heavy European leagues are (i.e. Chelsea and Manchester City in England, PSG and Lyon in France, the top four in Germany, etc.) and how so many matches aren’t that competitive. Those matches are kind of like the qualifiers for the US, and while they may have been meaningful, they weren’t really looked at all that seriously by most fans. (Even though they weren’t meaningful, the SBC matches and the matches against Japan were treated and analyzed far more seriously.)

          • DNG

            I think Morgan did a decent job of creating chances. As a starting CF though, she needs to score goals or her team won’t win many matches. I think it’d be harder to argue that Williams and Mcdonald didn’t benefit from playing Boston 4 times last year. I’m not sure if I completely buy the Ohai played worse defenses argument but I do not expect Ohai to keep up her goal scoring rate, maybe 7-9 over 24 matches. Teams will try and slow her down. I think it’s reasonable for Morgan to have been able to score at least one goal against Boston maybe more. Their defense was ripped apart by runners that got in behind their back line.

            I’m not really trying to take anything away from Morgan’s year with regards to international play. It was still very far from her 2012 form but she did perform against the best teams this year unlike #10. I probably wasn’t as high on her Olympic performance though. I thought France and Sweden did a very good job of limiting her effectiveness in spite of her goal. I don’t think it was completely her fault but her movement and combinations could definitely use work in my opinion.

            Even though those euro leagues are indeed top heavy I wouldn’t say that a majority of those leagues are filled with teams that have no chance against the top sides. Lots of the smaller teams are good at frustrating the bigger teams and take points off them on occasion. The USWNT plays too many teams where they could start their third XI and win comfortably.

          • JINX

            Judging whether or not a match is meaningful by attendance figures doesn’t work unfortunately

    • Breakers fan

      Appreciate your knowledge of the world stage here. Looks like you watch a ton of international games – I can’t report that to be true of myself. I didn’t even look at the official list given for this. I’ve learned that these things are basically meaningless or worse. That whoever creates them is barely paying any attention to the women’s game. These annual “awards” seem largely farcical to me. Do the players even care about them?

      • Steglitz49

        He is not knowledgeable. Instead, he is pig ignorant. An ignoramus for short.

    • AlexH

      I would pay to see a game between Team Does Not Belong vs. Team Should Be On The List.

  • Som Termanni

    A+E to discuss NWSL deal with potential advertisers at their upfront. One interesting detail mentioned that I hadn’t heard in talks about the NWSL deal: A+E started their own full-service advertising agency in January: http://www.broadcastingcable.com/news/currency/ae-sets-upfront-discuss-client-partnerships/163553

    • mockmook

      “at their upfront”

      Huh? Is this advert speak?

  • Steglitz49

    On this Saturday Feb 25th, the FA Girls Youth Cup QFs will be played.

    Arsenal vs Birmingham City; Liverpool vs Aston Villa; Millwall Lionesses vs Chelsea; and Sunderland v Teesside Sport.

    Thus, 2 teams from Brum, 3 from London and 3 from the North.

  • Steglitz49

    Jessica Diggins took silver and kikkan Randall bronze in the individual sprints in the X-country skiing World Championships. Majken Caspersen Falla of Norway took gold. The final was unusual with 3 American ladies, 2 Swedes and only 1 Norwegian lass.

  • Som Termanni

    ttps://twitter.com/BacklineSoccer/status/834825390585700352

    Ratcliffe appeared in 15 matches for Boston with 5 starts in 2016. She scored no goals as a forward, but picked up 3 yellow cards. She was a 2nd-round pick (#17 overall) in the 2016 draft.

    • Breakers fan

      Thanks for the news. i don’t like it.Not sure if there is a backstory but If there isn’t why not give her a chance to make the team? Why cast your lot with some unproven players? Ratcliffe came out of a great system, UVA, and did quite well there. She has speed and skills – enough to get more time. I liked her as a player and from what I could see as a positive influence in the team attitude, culture and chemistry – not something totally dismissable in my opinion. I’m bummed.

      • mockmook

        Perhaps she was unhappy there? Just trying to see something positive in this.

        If no team picks her up, it is a crime.

        CRS might work with the absence of Vasconcelos. And, who knows what Rapinoe will do in Seattle. Tymrak must be on shaky ground in KC. So, there are potential openings out there.

        • Breakers fan

          I asked the same question: Did she even want to come back? It could be that they were honoring a request from her, but…pretty darn late in the game if the goal was to free her up to seek opportunities elsewhere. My guess is that with all of their off-season acquisitions, the most recent being Weimar, it created a numbers game that left them wanting to cut someone. My approach, assuming Ratcliffe wanted to return, would have been to let them compete in camp for a spot. No guarantees. If Ratcliffe did want to come back then it seems clear to me that Beard wants to comfort his acquisitions – the ones listed in my post above – not have them concerned about making the team. They’ve already made it, while B. Ratcliffe now is the odd woman out, not even given a chance to win a roster spot.

          edit: I like your Chicago idea (and the others) – they’re similar players – Ratcliffe and Vasconcelos. I wish her the best, hope she finds a team if that is what she wants.

          • mockmook

            Interesting that Westphal has survived the “purge” (at least, so far).

            Based on the way Beard seemed to dismiss Westphal, this is unexpected for me.

          • Breakers fan

            I had the same thought and worry – will they trade her? It could still happen, even if next year. I noted that in the off-season she did that Beast Mode Soccer Training that some guy out in California started. Rachel Daly did it with her, among others. So although she is still with the team what is the plan for her? Will she start somewhere? How many minutes per game will she get? Do they have the guts to try her in the midfield? My prediction is that she mostly does not start and averages something like 20 minutes per game, which would not be what I would do were I the head coach. I’d play her in midfield from day 1 and would know she could play on the backline too, as needed.

          • mockmook

            Yikes, just looking at the (or, remains of the) current roster, I think it is worse than last year.

            Having trouble putting a coherent starting XI together.

            If Beard can have them compete for a playoff spot, he wins coach of the century (even though he seems to have had a strong hand in building the new, train-wreck roster).

            Beard also seems to have settled on a 4-2-3-1

            So, here’s what he’s probably thinking:

            http://drawformation.com/post/58b33ffa1aeab/sm-58b33ffa1aeab.png

            Like you, I’d rather see Westphal in the midfield (or perhaps a CB in a 3-back), and I thought she did not play very well at RB (though I blame some of that on Beard).

          • Breakers fan

            I think that is maybe exactly right, though I lean slightly towards a greater likelihood of a center back line of Oyster and Frisbie, with King on the right, thus my thought that Westphal may not start. With the amount of forwards they have…will any of them be moved to midfield? And if my backline is what it is, again, where does that leave Westphal?

            My first thought is Purce, of the forwards to move to midfield. And I think he likes DaCosta a lot – she could supplant Salem from the get-go. Will he base who starts on play in training, or does he have a fixed idea (I think this is more likely) that he’ll try until proven otherwise? What if Purce and Westphal outplay Salem, Haavi and DaCosta – do they play ahead of them? Keep in mind also that one of Haavi’s legs – the shin area– has been or was in a cast for a good while – 4-6 weeks I think. Just removed recently. So what kind of shape will she be in? I did see that she’s been working hard but it’s still recovery from a pretty serious injury. This is the roster he has crafted with a lot of intention – discarding many draft picks along the way being a known part of that vision.

          • mockmook

            Hmmm, I either forgot about or never heard about the Haavi injury.

            OK, throw Purce in for Haavi to start the season.

            I hear what your saying on the CBs, but I’ll stick with my prediction of Beard’s preference based on using the players with the most experience.

          • Breakers fan

            I think he’ll make every effort to start Haavi. But as we have said she may not be ready. If she isn’t I too think it’ll be Purce, assuming she outplays Rosie White in camp. Will certainly be interesting to see both who he plays and how well they do.

          • Breakers fan

            And in this whole picture we’ve laid out….where are Tiffany Weimer and Rosie White? How often do they see the field? Beard went out and got them; I feel he’ll want to play them at least some.

      • Steglitz49

        Do you have any evidence that Ratcliffe is better than DaCosta and Weimer?

        Granted Tiffany is getting a bit long in the tooth but both she and DaCosta have not just foreign experience (ie get-up-and-go) but success in foreign lands, and Tiffany seems to be successful in her outside interests.

    • mockmook
    • mockmook

      I believe you massacred that link 🙂

  • brdn08

    Pugh, Morgan, Brunn, Johnston, Solo and Heath should all be in the best 11.

    • Steglitz49

      The best US XI, one presumes.

      • BB Prince

        Brdn08 only knows the US. He or she is not interested in global women’s soccer

  • thewhiteroom

    Biggest omission I see is Stina Blackstenius. Second top scorer in club play in Damallsvenskan 2016, and two goals in Olympic tournament during knockout stages. Very important for club and country in 2016.

    • Steglitz49

      Hear hear! Thank you. To Stina you can add the defenders Jessica Samuelsson and Lisa Dahlkvist.

      This list is just as biased and pig ignorant as the FIFA POTY list. At least the FIFA list has the excuse of being assembled by ignoramuses and comes with a knees-up for the 3 players who get the most votes.

    • BB Prince

      What about Sara Dabritz?

      • thewhiteroom

        Yes, I agree with Däbritz.