New look US drop Morgan, emphasise youth, in squad for W Gold Cup

February 8 – Alex Morgan has been dropped from the United States Women’s National Team (USWNT) squad for the upcoming 2024 W Gold Cup as interim manager Twila Kilgore opts for a younger roster.

The USWNT’s disappointing World Cup dropout versus Sweden has sparked a desire for a change of personnel, with the Americans keen to get back on top of the world rankings after being leapfrogged by World Cup winners Spain.

Morgan, 34, is her nation’s leading goal scorer with 121 goals. Across 18 NWSL games in 2023, the veteran scored seven goals and notched five assists, captaining San Diego Wave to the top of the league table.

Interim manager Kilgore, who will make way for current Chelsea boss Emma Hayes in the summer, has said that the Gold Cup will provide upcoming talent with a chance to shine and become familiar with a format similar to what her players will face in the upcoming Olympic Games.

Teenagers Jaedyn Shaw and Olivia Moultrie featured on the squad list, whilst veterans Morgan and Becky Sauerbrunn were left out.

“Nobody is out of the mix,” Kilgore said. “That goes for some of our bigger names, that goes for lesser names that we’ve been tracking. We want to get it right, and everybody’s still involved. This is more about the fact that there can only be 23 people on the roster, and as we head toward the Olympics, only 18. We just simply can’t include everybody and this is the group that we feel is the right group for right now and who we need to look at in this tournament.”

Kicking off February 17 with play-in matches for the three final group slots, the Gold Cup group stage will open with the USWNT  at the LA Galaxy’s Dignity Health Stadium in Carson, California, facing either Guyana or the Dominican Republic.

Subsequently, the USWNT are set to encounter Argentina on February 23, and their group stage concludes with a match against Mexico three days later.

Full USWNT squad for Concacaf W Gold Cup

Goalkeepers: Jane Campbell, Houston Dash; Casey Murphy, North Carolina Courage; Alyssa Naeher, Chicago Red Stars

Defenders: Alana Cook, Seattle Reign; Abby Dahlkemper, San Diego Wave; Crystal Dunn, NJ/NY Gotham; Tierna Davidson, NJ/NY Gotham; Emily Fox, Arsenal; Naomi Girma, San Diego Wave; Casey Krueger, Washington Spirit; Jenna Nighswonger, NY/NJ Gotham

Midfielders: Korbin Albert, Paris Saint-Germain; Sam Coffey, Portland Thorns; Lindsey Horan, Lyon; Rose Lavelle, NJ/NY Gotham; Olivia Moultrie, Portland Thorns; Emily Sonnett, NJ/NY Gotham

Forwards: Mia Fishel, Chelsea; Midge Purce, NJ/NY Gotham; Trinity Rodman, Washington Spirit; Jaedyn Shaw, San Diego Wave; Sophia Smith, Portland Thorns; Lynn Williams, NJ/NY Gotham

Contact the writer of this story, Harry Ewing, at moc.l1718710011labto1718710011ofdlr1718710011owedi1718710011sni@g1718710011niwe.1718710011yrrah1718710011