Even without a confirmed manager for the Paris Olympics, the preparation continues for the USWNT against one of the darlings of the 2023 Women's World Cup.
This international window will be the second to last, as of now, before the conclusion of the calendar year. While the previous two matches against South Africa resulted in victories, it was a stretch to say the performances were up to par with what the Stars and Stripes expected. September was all about celebration. October will have a much different vibe.
Though this is not Spain or England, Colombia is a side that the United States could very well see in the Olympics in a few months' time. Las Cafeteras are one of just two representatives from South America along with Brazil that will be traveling to Paris. Its presence is not going to go under the radar as some may have thought back in June. This trip for Nelson Abadía's former team will be the first chance at competitive competition since its narrow elimination against the English on August 12. Overall, the USWNT has encountered the South American outfit 10 times, earning the triumph on nine of those occasions.
The household name within the team is Real Madrid attacker Linda Caicedo. In five games for her club side this season, the Colombian is tied for the team lead in assists with French 21-year-old Naomie Feller at three. Her dazzling footwork and stunning goal against Germany helped put her country in the World Cup quarterfinals for the first time in its history. The talent does not stop at No. 18. She is joined by Leicy Santos, Atletico Madrid's current leading scorer in Liga F play. In total, 10 players from the Las Cafeteras' World Cup team play a part for a European outfit.
Eight players named to the Twila Kilgore's October roster currently have less than 10 caps with two having not stepped on the pitch at the senior international level. Jaeydn Shaw, Mia Fishel, and M.A. Vignola return to the team while Portland Thorns' midfielder Olivia Moultrie received a well-deserved call-up. That room for Portland's 18-year-old was made due to Rose Lavelle reportedly "not being ready for international minutes". The OL Reign star is one of several including Tierna Davidson, Catarina Macario who are missing from this pool of players.
Here is everything you need to know ahead of kick-off in Sandy, Utah in a few days time.
27-player roster for two friendlies vs. Colombia
Goalkeepers: Aubrey Kingsbury, Alyssa Naeher, Casey Murphy
Defenders: M.A. Vignola, Alana Cook, Crystal Dunn, Emily Fox, Naomi Girma, Sofia Huerta, Casey Krueger, Becky Sauerbrunn, Emily Sonnett
Midfielders: Andi Sullivan, Sam Coffey, Savannah DeMelo, Lindsey Horan, Ashley Sanchez, Olivia Moultrie
Forwards: Lynn Williams, Sophia Smith, Alyssa Thompson, Jaedyn Shaw, Margaret Purce, Trinity Rodman, Alex Morgan, Ashley Hatch, Mia Fishel
Schedule for USWNT friendlies
USWNT vs. Colombia, Thursday, October 26 at America First Field, 9:00 p.m. EST
Where to watch: TBS, Universo, Peacock
USWNT vs. Colombia, Sunday, October 29 at Snapdragon Stadium, 5:30 p.m. EST
Where to watch: TNT, Universo, Peacock