May 19, 2010

WPS Midweek Notes - May 19

Marta Wins WPS Player of the Week

Brazilian forward Marta has been named WPS Player of the Week. Marta scored two 1st half goals in FC Gold Pride's 2-1 victory over the Boston Breakers on Friday night. It is the 3rd time she has received the honor.

The two goals give her three for the 2010 season and 13 for her WPS career. She is the all-time leader in goals for Women's Professional Soccer. Marta and her Gold Pride teammates have raced out to a 5-1 record, good for 15 points and 1st place in the standings. Marta was also named as Goal.com's Player of the Week.

USWNT vs Germany on May 22

The US Women's National Team will meet Germany on Saturday afternoon at Cleveland Browns Stadium. The match is scheduled to be televised on ESPN2 at 6pm eastern time.

In the last meeting between the two teams, the US edged Germany 3-2 at the Algarve Cup Championship in March. Germany has not played the US on American soil since 2003.

Surprisingly, US Coach Pia Sundhage went heavily for defenders when naming her squad for the match. In all, 10 defenders were named to the US side. Only two non-WPS players were named to the squad, Ali Krieger who is currently playing in Germany and Alex Morgan of the University of California. Here are the rosters for the two teams:

United States:
Goalkeepers (3)-Hope Solo, Nicole Barnhart, Jillian Loyden.
Defenders (10)-Rachel Buehler, Stephanie Cox, Marian Dalmy, Ali Krieger, Amy LePeilbet, Kate Markgraf, Heather Mitts, Christie Rampone, Brittany Taylor, Cat Whitehill.
Midfielders (6)-Yael Averbuch, Shannon Boxx, Kristine Lilly, Lori Lindsey, Heather O'Reilly, Megan Rapinoe.
Forwards (3)-Alex Morgan, Amy Rodriguez, Abby Wambach.

Goalkeepers (2)-Nadine Angerer, Ursula Holl.
Defenders (7)-Saskia Bartusiak, Linda Bresonik, Sonja Fuss, Ariane Hingst, Annike Krahn, Navina Omilade, Bianca Rech.
Midfielders (5)-Melanie Behringer, Kerstin Garefrekes, Kim Kulig, Simone Landehr, Alexandra Popp.
Forwards (4)-Inka Grings, Martina Müller, Celia Okoyino da Mbabi, Birgit Prinz.
Alternates (3)-Isabell Bachor, Conny Pohlers, Lisa Weiβ.

Statement Regarding McCall Zerboni

Earlier in the week, General Manager Shawn McGee of the Atlanta Beat released the following statement with regards to McCall Zerboni and the injuries she suffered during Sunday's match against the Washington Freedom:

"McCall was involved in horrendous head-to-head collision with Sonia Bompastor as they were both going for a ball in the air. Both players were down for an extended period of time. Bompastor received 8 stitches to a gash on her forehead. McCall was taken off the field on a stretcher, and we sent her to the hospital for a cat scan and observation. She has a concussion, and her return will be a day to day decision."

For her part, McCall is back tweeting and she posted a picture of herself complete with bump and swollen eye on facebook today. Best wishes on a speedy recovery to McCall and hope to see her back on the pitch soon.

Around the League
Atlanta Beat - The Beat have outshot their last two opponents by a margin of 46-19 and held the edge in corners by a 23-6 margin in those two matches.....Mami Yamaguchi has joined the Japanese National Team for the Asian Cup, which will serve as qualifiers for next year's World Cup. Japan's first group stage opponent is Myanmar on May 20.....Atlanta has now gone 335 minutes without a goal. The all-time WPS record is held by the Chicago Red Stars at 451 minutes in June of 2009.

Boston Breakers - Nine of Boston's 11 starters have been the same for every match. Seven of those players have played every minute so far.....For the 2nd straight year, Kelly Smith leads the Breakers in goal scoring. She has 3 so far this season.....The Breakers' winless streak has reached 5 matches, with a 0-2-3 record over that time, and being outscored 6-3. Last year, Boston's longest winless streak was 5 matches from May 10 to June 17. They had an 0-2-3 record in that streak, being outscored by a 5-3 margin, before defeating Chicago on June 21.

Chicago Red Stars - Red Star attendance has exceeded 5,000 in 2 of their 3 home matches this season.....The Red Stars lead WPS in shots attempted with 82, but are 7th in shots on goal with just 31, a low 38% on goal percentage.....The Red Stars have now been shut out 15 times in 26 matches. They have only won one match in which they scored 1 goal and that was the 2009 opener against Saint Louis.

FC Gold Pride - Marta's brace on Friday night marked the 3rd time she has scored two goals in a WPS match.....Gold Pride's offense is much improved from 2009. Last year, they scored 2 or more goals in only three matches out of 20. This year, they have done it four times in 6 matches.....All five goals surrendered by Gold Pride this season have been to internationals (Aluko 2, Kalmari, Ocampo, and Smith).

Philadelphia Independence - Karina LeBlanc pushed her WPS career shutout total to 14 on Saturday night against the Red Stars. As teammates, LeBlanc and Val Henderson have shutouts in 16 of their 26 matches together.....Only Nikki Krzysik and Sara Larsson have played every minute so far for the Independence.....Philadelphia leads the league with 54 fouls committed.

Saint Louis Athletica - Eniola Aluko now leads WPS with 4 goals scored and also in offsides with 16, six more than the nearest player. Last year, she led the league with 33 offsides calls.....Shannon Boxx became the first player to convert a penalty this season when she scored against Sky Blue in Athletica's 2-2 draw.....Athletica set a record for scoring in 11 consecutive regular season matches on Sunday. They are the only team that has not been shut out in 2010. However, they did suffer a shutout at the hands of Sky Blue in the 2009 WPS playoffs.

Sky Blue FC - Laura Kalmari became the 3rd Sky Blue player to score two goals in a match. The other two were Natasha Kai and Kacey White, both of whom accomplished the feat in the same match on July 15, 2009 against Washington.....Karen Bardsley has faced 49 shots on goal, 12 more than the nearest other goalkeeper.....Sky Blue surrendered a 2nd half lead for only the 2nd match in their history against Athletica on Sunday. They gave up two 2nd half leads in the aforementioned match against the Freedom last July.

Washington Freedom - The Freedom have had 7 different goal scorers this season, the most of any WPS team, but only two players have assists, Abby Wambach with 7 and Sonia Bompastor with 2. They are currently first and second among all-time WPS assists leaders with 12 and 8 respectively....Wambach has figured in 9 of the Freedom's 10 goals this season.....The month of May has been good to Washington. Over two seasons, their record in May is 4-0-3.

Trivia Question - In 2011, the World Cup will be held in Germany. Of the USWNT players who are active for Saturday's friendly against Germany, which two started both of the last two matches in which the US faced Germany in the World Cup in 1999 and 2003?