Also in today’s roundup, Joanna Lohman to be featured in They Bruise documentary and fans can compete with NWSL stars in March Madness.
The United States women’s national team will reportedly host Brazil, Japan and Australia in a four-team summer tournament. The tournament was reported by Cintia Barlem as a part of Brazil’s busy 2017 schedule.
According to Barlem, the tournament will be played between July 22 and August 3, which falls within the FIFA window set aside for the UEFA Women’s EUROs. Plans for the tournament may not be finalized yet, as some of Brazil’s scheduled competitions remain to be confirmed. U.S. Soccer has yet to confirm or deny rumors of a summer tournament, but Jill Ellis did list both Brazil and Japan as upcoming opponents for the USWNT in an interview with FIFA.com back in February.
“Our biggest focus coming out of the Olympics was to continue to have a very aggressive schedule,” she said. “We will play Japan, England, Germany, France and Brazil. We have all these teams lined up to play. That is important, because you can’t take an off year.”
Judging by the number of teams, quality of opponents and timeframe during which the tournament will be played, it appears as though this tournament may be very similar to the SheBelieves Cup.
As Ellis said, 2017 may be an “off” year, but the USWNT is not treating it as such. The team will next host Russia in a pair of friendlies in April before traveling to Norway to take on one of their oldest rivals in June.
Joanna Lohman featured in web docu-series
Washington Spirit midfielder Joanna Lohman will be featured in a new web docu-series created and directed by documentary filmmaker Marcos Meconi. They Bruise strives to shine more of a spotlight on female athletes who often go unnoticed in a field still dominated by their male counterparts. It also uses sports to explore much deeper issues such as race, sexuality, gender and other current political issues.
“We are entering a political climate where people are being intimidated because of their religion, skin color, immigration status, or sexual orientation. For queer folks and other minorities, the most important political act is to be ourselves in daily life–unequivocally, and unrepentantly,” Meconi said in an interview with AfterEllen. “That’s what Joanna Lohman does on and off the field. She plays the beautiful game to express her rich, complex identity, and allow others to do the same.”
In the documentary, Lohman, easily identifiable on the field thanks to her signature Johawk, primarily discusses gender norms and the importance of being an out lesbian in the NWSL, two topics that she has been outspoken on in the past.
“It’s unparalleled, really, as a pro athlete, the people that come to your games, that watch you, that really adore you, that look up to you, especially as an LGBT athlete and in a sport that has so many LGBT fans,” she said in the five-and-a-half minute documentary. “They see me out on the field, working. I’m proud of who I am on the field, off the field, and that gives them a little more confidence to be who they are. For me I think that’s the biggest impact I could make.”
The web docu-series premieres on Friday, March 17 with Lohman’s episode.
“She’s the ultimate bruiser,” Meconi said, “that’s why I wanted to kick-off the series with Jo’s story.”
WoSo catches March Madness
Wish you could compete against some of your favorite NWSL stars? Well, thanks to the ESPN NCAA Tournament challenge, you can.
Heather O’Reilly, Allie Long and Jane Campbell are just three celebrities who have created a celebrity group for the online challenge, part of ESPN’s coverage of the NCAA basketball tournament. Other celebrities hosting groups include Dax McCarty (Chicago Fire), Breanna Stewart (Seattle Storm), Mark Ingram (New Orleans Saints), Chelsea Handler (comedian), Common (rapper), The Muppets and SoccerGirlProblems.
To participate, fans can fill in their own NCAA March Madness tournament brackets and compete against one another and/or their favorite celebrities for prizes worth up to $20,000. For more information or to register, click here.