United States women’s national team interim coach Twila Kilgore tries to assess everything in context.
“I always think of things being time-, place- and people-specific,” she said on Wednesday.
Kilgore’s view is fitting for this transitional and defining moment for the U.S. women. On the heels of their worst World Cup showing in history this year, the Americans need to quickly redefine themselves for an Olympic tournament that begins in nine months, while also laying the foundation for a return to success at the 2027 World Cup that could be played on home soil.
Yet, they enter another international window next week without the coach expected to build guide them into those moments. At a time when everyone wants to look forward, the conditions presented by this moment force us to view only the present.
“If we just look at the team right now and what we know is coming, we know change is coming,” Kilgore said. “We know that we’re coming out of a moment at [the] World Cup that we’re not satisfied with. We know we took a good step in these last friendlies. We know we have an amazing opportunity to play against Colombia and come back together and continue to improve our style of play and execution of the game plan. But there’s a lot of unknowns about the future and I think like on a human level, if we just take a step back, that’s hard for all athletes. Of course, it’s part of being a professional but to continue progress and charge on towards the Olympics, both individually and collectively with so much change on the horizon, is a task that we’re up for, but it’s definitely a challenge.”
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