USWNT on TV: Friendly vs. Ireland (03-Aug-2019, ESPN2)

On Saturday, August 3, 2019, the United States Women’s National Team will play in their first “Victory Tour” match after winning the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup in France.

DETAILS:

  • What: International Friendly
  • Who: USWNT vs. Ireland (FAI)
  • Where: The Rose Bowl, Pasadena, California
  • Kick-Off:  Saturday, August 3, 10:25 PM EDT (per the FAI)
  • TV Window:  10:00 PM EDT to 12:30 AM EDT
  • Channels: ESPN2, Galavision

WHAT TO EXPECT:  A relatively easy USWNT victory.  Ireland has never gotten a result against the United States, conceding 45 goals over 12 losses, while only scoring once (October 20th, 2004). Depending on the USWNT’s form, it may not be a blow-out, though the USA should dominate with numerous scoring chances and will probably dominate possession, especially against Ireland’s inexperienced midfield. (In Ireland’s last match, Italy dominated possession 74%/26% and took eighteen shots.)

USWNT ROSTER: It’s a Victory Tour match, so the same as the WWC roster.

STARTING LINE-UP:  As the first match of the Tour, expect the same line-up that started the final versus the Netherlands, with perhaps a change or two, mostly depending on injury concerns.  As this is the only Victory Tour match in the Western third of the United States, starts or at least substitute appearances by players with ‘hometowns’ in those states. For California, Alex Morgan*, Abby Dahlkemper*, Tierna Davidson, Christen Press,  and Megan Rapinoe*.  For Arizona,  Jessica McDonald and Julie Ertz*.  And, for Colorado, Lindsey Horan and Mallory Pugh. (Asterisk’ed players are expected to start. Assuming six substitutes allowed, the remaining five players should all see minutes, if cleared to play.)


OPPONENT NOTES:

Website:  www.fai.ie/ireland/senior-women/latest (Actively updated, but lacks useful statistics — caps, goals, et cetera — and details for players.)

FIFA Women’s Rankings:  Ireland is currently ranked 33rd overall and 22nd in UEFA.

Head Coach:  None, at the moment.  The previous coach, Colin Bell (February 2017 to June 2019) resigned to take an assistant role at English men’s side Huddersfield Town.  Applicants were suppose to be interviewed starting in late July, but no announcement of a hire has been announced yet.

Notable Absences:  Denise O’Sullivan (North Carolina Courage) and long throw-in specialist Megan Campbell (Manchester City, past: FSU), both due to club commitments, as this match is not in an official FIFA window.

Last Match Played:  April 9, 2019.  A friendly at Italy.  Ireland lost 1:2, as Italy came back after giving up a 3rd minute goal by Katie McCabe. (Match Details – ESPN)

Recent Form: Ireland have only played four matches this year.  Besides the Italy loss, Ireland had a scoreless draw and a 1:0 win over Wales (February 28, March 3) and a 0:1 loss to Belgium in January.  Their last match of 2018 was a 0:4 loss away at Poland.

In the Past – 2019 WWC Qualifying:  Ireland finished 3rd in their UEFA qualifying group, behind Norway and the Netherlands.  Against those two teams, Ireland had a record of 0-3-1, including a 0:0 draw at the Netherlands in late 2017. The three losses were respectable, being just 0:2 and 0:1 losses.  Against the other two teams, Northern Ireland and Slovakia, Ireland won all four matches, scoring at least two goals in each and only allowing one goal across the four matches.

What’s Ahead – Women’s Euro 2021 Qualifying: Ireland are in a five-team group that includes a recently underwhelming Germany and a middling Ukraine, plus minnows Greece and Montenegro. A second-place finish in the group would give Ireland a good chance of making the final tournament in England, as the top three (out of nine) second-place teams qualify, while the remaining second-place teams will be paired off in home-and-away play-offs. (Wikipedia)

College Connections:  Three players, Megan Connolly (Florida State, NCAA Champs 2018), Jess Gargan (Quinnipiac University), and Diane Caldwell (Hofstra) have played NCAA D1 soccer, while one player, Heather Payne, will be an incoming freshman at Florida State.


IRELAND ROSTER:
Links to current club profiles, where available.
Players with asterisks after their name either started (*) or appeared as substitutes (**) in Ireland’s last match, a 1:2 loss against Italy.

  • Goalkeepers:
    • Marie Hourihan* (SC Braga) – age 31, height 5′ 11″
    • Grace Moloney (Reading) – age 25, height 5′ 7″
  • Defenders:
    • Harriet Scott* (Birmingham City) – age 26, height 5′ 4″
    • Louise Quinn* (Arsenal) – age 30, height 6′ 0″
    • Niamh Fahey* (Liverpool) – age 31
    • Diane Caldwell** (SC Sand) – age 30, height 5′ 8″
    • Claire O’Riordan (MSV Duisburg) – age 24, height 5′ 7″
    • Eabha O’Mahony (Cork City) – age 17
    • Megan Connolly* (Brighton and Hove Albion, previously FSU) – age 22, height 5′ 8″
    • Lauren Dwyer (Wexford Youths) – age 22
  • Midfielders:
    • Alex Kavanagh (Shelbourne) – age 19
    • Niamh Farrelly (Peamount United) – age 21
    • Eleanor Ryan-Doyle (Peamount United) – age 22
    • Jess Gargan (Shelbourne, previously Quinnipiac) – age 22, height 5′ 9″
    • Claire Walsh (Peamount United) – age 24
  • Forwards:
    • Amber Barrett** (FC Köln) – age 23
    • Emily Whelan (Shelbourne) – age 16
    • Katie McCabe* (Arsenal) – age 23, apparently has 3 goals in 17 senior caps
    • Rianna Jarrett** (Wexford Youths) – age 25
    • Heather Payne (Florida State University, previously Bristol City FC) – age 19, height 5′ 7″

 

PAST MATCH-UPS

DATE            SCORE  CITY                    ATTENDANCE
Sept. 4, 1999   5-0 W  Foxborough, Mass.       30,564 (MLS)
June 14, 2003   5-0 W  Salt Lake City, Utah    19,584
Oct. 20, 2004   5-1 W  Chicago, Ill.           12,856
Oct. 23, 2004   5-0 W  Houston, Texas          16,991
July 23, 2006   5-0 W  San Diego, Calif.        3,574
Sept. 13, 2008  2-0 W  Philadelphia, Pa.       13,176
Sept. 17, 2008  1-0 W  East Rutherford, N.J.    4,227
Sept. 20, 2008  2-0 W  Bridgeview, Ill.         5,390 
Nov. 28, 2012   5-0 W  Portland, Ore.          10,092  
Dec. 1, 2012    2-0 W  Glendale, Ariz.         11,570
May 10, 2015    3-0 W  San Jose, Calif.        18,000 (sell-out)
Jan. 23, 2016   5-0 W  San Diego, Calif.       23,309
  • Four players have had hat tricks against Ireland:  Abby Wambach (Oct. 23, 2004; 5 goals), Cindy Parlow (Oct. 20, 2004), Alex Morgan (November 28, 2012), and Carli Lloyd (Jan. 23, 2016).
  • The lone goal in the September 17, 2008 match was by Natasha Kai.
  • In the 2016 match, Mallory Pugh earned her first cap and scored her first goal.
  • Kate Markgraf’s only USWNT goal (in 201 caps) came against Ireland (Sept. 20, 2008, video below).

 

ADDITIONAL READING: