CHICAGO (March 28, 2018) - U.S. Under-17 Women's National Team head coach Mark Carr has named the 20-player roster for the 2018 Concacaf U-17 Women's Championship to be held in Managua, Nicaragua from April 19-29. The tournament will send the top three finishers to the 2018 FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup being held in Uruguay from Nov. 13-Dec. 1.
The cut-off date to be eligible for the upcoming U-17 Women's World Cup is players born on or after Jan. 1, 2001. Carr chose 17 players born in 2001 but also included three players born in 2002.
Carr named the roster after a 10-day training camp in Lakewood Ranch, Florida, that featured three matches against the Japan Under-17 WNT. The USA drew the first game 0-0 and then won the next two, 4-1 and 2-0.
"The decision of the final World Cup qualifying roster certainly was not easy," Carr said. "Our coaching staff and I deliberated for days, right up until after our final game with Japan. The credit goes to the players for how they have pushed each other to this point and made the final roster decisions very difficult. It's never easy to tell players they aren't in the squad, but my hope is that all our players respond with a positive reaction and know that this is something they must commit to daily. Having now selected the roster, we feel good about the group that will represent our country in Nicaragua."
Two players who participated in the 2016 Concacaf Women's U-17 Championship, which the USA won while earning a berth to the 2016 FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup, are on this year's roster in defender Kennedy Wesley and forward Kate Wiesner.
U-17 WNT CONCACAF Qualifying Roster by Position:
GOALKEEPERS (2): Angelina Anderson (Mustang FC; Danville, Calif.), Julia Dohle (New York City FC; Scarsdale, N.Y.)
DEFENDERS (6): Michela Agresti (FC Stars, Swampscott, Mass.), Talia DellaPeruta (NTH Tophat; Cumming, Ga.), Smith Hunter (Seattle Reign Academy; Seattle, Wash.), Makenna Morris (Bethesda SC; Germantown, Md.), Natalia Staude (NTH Tophat; Atlanta, Ga.), Kennedy Wesley (So Cal Blues; Rossmoor, Calif.)
MIDFIELDERS (6): Hannah Bebar (Eclipse Select SC; Naperville, Ill.), Croix Bethune (Concorde Fire; Alpharetta, Ga.), Maya Doms (Davis Legacy; Davis, Calif.), Mia Fishel (San Diego Surf; San Diego, Calif.), Sophia Jones (San Jose Earthquakes; Menlo Park, Calif.), Astrid Wheeler (Concorde Fire; Atlanta, Ga.)
FORWARDS (6): Isabella D'Aquila (So Cal Blues; Mission Viejo, Calif.), Sunshine Fontes (Hawaii Rush; Wahiawa, Hawaii), Payton Linnehan (FC Stars; Douglas, Mass.), Samantha Meza (Solar SC; Dallas, Texas), Diana Ordoñez (FC Dallas; Prosper, Texas), Kate Wiesner (LAFC Slammers; Monrovia, Calif.)
The Americans have been seeded into Group B at the 2018 Concacaf Women's Under-17 Championship, where they will face Costa Rica, Bermuda and Canada.
The USA opens the tournament on April 20 against Costa Rica, faces Bermuda on April 22 and will play Canada on April 24 in the Group B finale. All of the USA's group matches kick off at 10 p.m. ET (8 p.m. local).
Group A features host Nicaragua, Mexico, Haiti and Puerto Rico. After round-robin group play, the top two finishers in each group will cross over for the semifinals on April 27 with the winners of those games, along the winner of the third-place match, earning berths to the 2018 FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup. The Championship and Third-Place matches are on April 29. Estadio Nacional in the capital of Managua will be the venue for all sixteen tournament matches played across eight matchdays.
2018 Concacaf U-17 Women's Championship
USA's Group B Schedule
Date Match Kickoff (ET) Venue
April 20 USA vs. Costa Rica 10 p.m. National Stadium; Managua, Nicaragua
April 22 USA vs. Bermuda 10 p.m. National Stadium; Managua, Nicaragua
April 24 USA vs. Canada 10 p.m. National Stadium; Managua, Nicaragua
More than half the field is set for the 2018 FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup. Joining host Uruguay are Brazil, Colombia, Ghana, Cameroon, South Africa, Korea Republic, Korea DPR, Japan and New Zealand. Along with Concacaf's three qualifiers, three more will come from Europe.
- The U.S. U-17 WNT is 7-0-1 in 2018 heading into World Cup qualifying and has scored 32 goals while allowing just two.
- Over the course of this cycle, this group of players has lost just once, a 5-4 setback during a wild game last summer against China in Weifang, China, and has an overall international record of 16-1-2.
- The match against Bermuda marks the first time a U.S. Women's National Team has played the island nation at any level. These will also be the first U.S. WNT matches at any age level played in Nicaragua.
- Defenders Talia DellaPeruta, Smith Hunter and Makenna Morris are the three players on the roster born in 2002.
- All the players named to the roster have been capped at the U-17 level with Kate Wiesner (29) and Kennedy Wesley (28) the most capped and goalkeeper Julia Dohle (2) the least.
- Thirteen of the 18 field players on the roster have scored in an international match, led by forward Sunshine Fontes, who has 13 goals in 19 caps. Forward Isabella D'Aquila has eight goals in 11 caps while midfielder Croix Bethune has seven goals in 18 caps. Forward Payton Linnehan and midfielder Maya Doms each have six goals in 17 caps.
- Fourteen players on the roster have 10 or more U-17 caps.
- The two goalkeepers named are 5-foot-11 Angelina Anderson and six-foot Julia Dohle.
- The players on the roster hail from nine states and 16 different youth clubs. There are seven Californians on the roster, three from Northern and four from Southern, and four players from Georgia.
- The roster features two players from four different U.S. Soccer Development Academy clubs in the So Cal Blues, FC Stars out of Massachusetts, Concorde Fire out of Georgia and NTH Tophat, also out of Georgia.
- This is the first Concacaf qualifying team for the USA in which all the players were born after the historic 1999 FIFA Women's World Cup victory.
- Forwards Jordan Canniff and Lia Godfrey, two players who were involved in the last U-17 cycle as 14-year-olds, and midfielder Ainsley Ahmadian, all of whom likely would have made the qualifying roster, were unavailable for selection due to ACL injuries.