Alex Morgan, Megan Rapinoe

USWNT Ends Year with Two International Friendlies against Romania

The USA Women’s National Soccer Team will end 2016 with a pair of matches against Romania in California beginning on Thursday, Nov. 10 at Avaya Stadium in San Jose (7 p.m. PT on ESPN2), followed by a second game on Sunday, Nov. 13 at StubHub Center in Carson (6:30 p.m. PT on FS1).

These will be the USA’s first games against Romania in the history of the programs.

Game 1 – Nov. 10, 2016 at 7 p.m. PT

USA vs. Romania
Avaya Stadium; San Jose, California
International Friendly Match

Game 2 – Nov. 13, 2016 at 6:30 p.m. PT

USA vs. Romania
StubHub Center; Carson
International Friendly Match

Four veterans of the 2015 Women’s World Cup Team and 2016 Olympic Team who were not called in for the games against Switzerland in October return to the roster: defenders Julie Johnston and Ali Krieger, midfielder Megan Rapinoe and forward Alex Morgan. Additionally, five of the six players that earned their first cap against Switzerland last month return to this roster: Forwards Lynn Williams and Kealia Ohai, defenders Casey Short and Abby Dahlkemper and midfielder Andi Sullivan. Three uncapped players have been called up for the first time: Kristen Edmonds, who led the NWSL’s Orlando Pride with six goals scored, defender Emily Menges from Portland Thorns FC and forward Jessica McDonald from the Western New York Flash, with the latter two replacing original call-ups Jaelene Hinkle (ankle) and Meghan Klingenberg (back) who were ruled out due to injuries. McDonald is coming off a fantastic season with the 2016 NWSL Champion Western New York Flash. She started 19 games and scored 10 goals, second-most on the team behind NWSL MVP and Golden Boot winner Lynn Williams, as well as second-most in the league. She finished in the top three in league standings for most assists (7), most shots (61) and most shots on goal (34). In the NWSL Championship game, McDonald provided the crucial assist to Williams that allowed the Flash to tie the match in the 124th minute. In her third season as a professional player, Menges started all 20 games and played every minute for the 2016 NWSL Shield winners Portland Thorns. She was part of a back line that allowed just 19 goals all year, the fewest in the league, and racked up an 8-1-1 home record. She was named to the 2016 NWSL Best XI. Goalkeeper Adrianna Franch, who has been in with the U.S. team for several camps over the last few years, was originally called into camp as well but was unable to join the team due to a family commitment.

USA roster to play Romania

Goalkeepers:

Alyssa Naeher (Chicago Red Stars),
Ashlyn Harris (Orlando Pride)

Defenders:

Abby Dahlkemper (Western New York Flash),
Julie Johnston (Chicago Red Stars),
Ali Krieger (Orlando Pride),
Emily Menges (Portland Thorns FC),
Kelley O’Hara (Sky Blue FC),
Becky Sauerbrunn (FC Kansas City),
Casey Short (Chicago Red Stars),

Midfielders:

Morgan Brian (Houston Dash),
Kristen Edmonds (Orlando Pride),
Tobin Heath (Portland Thorns FC),
Lindsey Horan (Portland Thorns FC),
Allie Long (Portland Thorns FC),
Samantha Mewis (Western New York Flash),
Megan Rapinoe (Seattle Reign),
Andi Sullivan (Stanford)

Forwards:

Crystal Dunn (Washington Spirit),
Jessica McDonald (Western New York Flash),
Alex Morgan (Orlando Pride),
Kealia Ohai (Houston Dash),
Christen Press (Chicago Red Stars), L
ynn Williams (Western New York Flash)

Romania WNT squad

Goalkeepers:

12-Roxana Oprea (Olimpia Cluj),
1-Linda Kajtar (Vasas Femina Odorheiu Secuiesc)

Defenders:

2-Andreea Corduneanu (Olimpia Cluj),
3-Lidia Havristiuc (Olimpia Cluj),
6-Maria Ficzay (Medyk Konin, POL),
16-Ana Maria Gorea (ASA Târgu Mures),
15-Teodora Meluta (Olimpia Cluj)

Midfielders:

4-Ioana Bortan (Olimpia Cluj),
5-Adina Giurgiu (Olimpia Clurj),
7-Raluca Sarghe (Konak Belediyespor, TUR),
8-Stefania Vatafu (Olimpia Cluj),
10-Andreea Voicu (Olimpia Cluj),
13-Beatrice Tarasila (Olimpia Cluj),
21-Cristina Carp (Olimpia Clurj)

Forwards:

9-Laura Rus (Icheon Daekyo, KOR),
14-Alexandra Lunca (Olimpia Cluj),
17-Mara Batea (Olimpia Cluj),
18-Mihaela Ciolacu (Olimpia Cluj),
19-Loredana Popa (Olimpia Cluj)

Romania, currently 36th in the FIFA rankings, finished second behind France in Group 3 of qualifying for the 2017 UEFA Women’s Euro, earning a spot in the playoffs against Portugal for the final berth to the 16-nation tournament being held in the Netherlands. Romania barely missed out on being one of the six best group runners-up, and thus qualifying directly for the final tournament. Russia edged Romania for the sixth spot by just one more goal scored.

Midfielder Åžtefania Vătafu was the top scorer for Romania during Euro qualifying, tallying four goals in eight games, while Alexandra Lunca, Laura Rus, Adina Giurgiu and Andreea Voicu notched two each. These five players combined for 12 of Romania’s 18 goals in the qualifying tournament and they are all in this roster.

In the playoffs, Portugal and Romania drew 0-0 in the first leg in Portugal, but a 1-1 draw in Romania gave Portugal the final berth to the Euros next summer on away goals. Substitute Laura Rus scored to equalize the second leg with nine minutes to go but Romania’s debut playoff ended as it could not get another goal.

The two friendlies will mark the first matches between the USA and Romania in women’s soccer. Romania is the 51st different country the U.S. Women have played in their history.

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