AROUND THE NET, US SOCCER NEWS — August 19, 2012 at 2:00 pm

U.S. U-20 Women’s National Team vs. Ghana 2012 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup Hiroshima Big Arch Stadium; Hiroshima, Japan


Aug. 20, 2012U.S. U-20 WNT KICKS OFF WORLD CUP AGAINST GHANA: The U.S. Under-20 Women’s National Team kicks off the 2012 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup on Aug. 20 against Ghana at the Hiroshima Big Arch Stadium. The match can be watched live on ESPNU and ESPN3 with coverage starting at 2:50 a.m. ET early Monday morning while kickoff is set for 3 a.m. ET. The game will be a reprise of the opening match of the 2010 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup in Germany in which these two countries tied 1-1 at Rudolf-Harbig Stadium in Dresden. The USA will then have two days of rest before facing China PR on Aug. 23 in Hiroshima in the second group match and three days of rest – including a travel day to the Miyagi prefecture – before finishing group play against Germany on Aug. 27. Fans can also follow all the matches of the U.S. U-20s on’s MatchTracker and on Twitter @ussoccer_ynt. For a full tournament schedule and results, visit the FIFA Under20 Women’s World Cup tournament page on FOR JAPAN ’12: The ESPN networks will be carrying 18 live matches of the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup with 17 live on ESPNU and ESPN3 and one live on ESPN2 and ESPN3, which is the USA-Germany clash on Aug. 27 that pits the two two-time champions of this tournament against each other in group play, the first time ever the USA and Germany will meet in the first round in a FIFA Women’s World Cup.2012 U.S. U-20 FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP SCHEDULE AND RESULTS

Date Opponent Result/Time (ET) U.S. Goalscorers/TV Venue
Aug. 20 Ghana 2:50 a.m. ESPNU, ESPN3 Hiroshima Big Arch Stadium; Hiroshima, Japan
Aug. 23 China PR 5:50 a.m. ESPNU, ESPN3 Hiroshima Big Arch Stadium; Hiroshima, Japan
Aug. 27 Germany 2:50 a.m. ESPN2, ESPN3 Miyagi Stadium; Rifu, Japan

Monday, Aug. 20
USA vs. Ghana
China PR vs. Germany

Thursday, Aug. 23
Germany vs. Ghana
USA vs. China PR

Monday, Aug. 27
USA vs. Germany
Ghana vs. China PR


  • A total of 30 different countries have qualified for at least one of the final competitions of this tournament (2002-2012). The continental breakdown: AFC (7), CAF (3), CONCACAF (4), CONMEBOL (4), OFC (1) and UEFA (11). Brazil, Germany, Nigeria and the USA are the only teams to have qualified for all final competitions held to date.
  • This year, there are no newcomers for the 2012 edition in Japan after Colombia, Costa Rica, Ghana and Sweden were the newcomers in 2010.
  • With two titles and 22 wins in 28 matches the USA leads the FIFA Women’s U-20 All-time Ranking.
  • The highest number of goals per match for this tournament – 3.88 – was recorded in the inaugural tournament in Canada in 2002 (helped by the 25 goals scored by the USA along in their six matches), followed by 3.54 in Thailand in 2004 and 3.53 in Chile in 2008.

TOURNAMENT FORMAT: The 2012 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup – which is staged every two years – features 16 nations divided into four groups of four teams each. The top two teams in each group advance to the quarterfinal stage on Aug. 30 and 31. The semifinals will take place Tuesday, Sept. 4, and the Final and third-place matches will be held on Saturday, Sept. 8, both rounds at the National Olympic Stadium in Tokyo. Players eligible for this age group tournament must have been born on or after Jan. 1, 1992.

16 NATIONS, ONE TROPHY: The 16 nations competing in the 2012 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup are: host Japan; China PR, Korea DPR and Korea Republic from Asia; Ghana and Nigeria from Africa; Germany, Italy, Norway and Switzerland from Europe; the USA, Canada and Mexico from CONCACAF; Brazil and Argentina from South America; and New Zealand from Oceania.

CONSISTENT U.S. PRESENCE: The USA has competed in all five previous Women’s World Cups held for this age group, winning the inaugural tournament in 2002 in Canada when it was a U-19 event, finishing third in 2004 in Thailand, finishing fourth in 2006 in Russia when it moved to U-20s, winning in 2008 in Chile on the strength of goal scoring from current Olympic gold medalists Alex Morgan and Sydney Leroux, and finished fifth in 2010 in Germany. The U-19 tournaments featured 12 teams while the last three – and Japan – feature 16.

GOALKEEPERS (3): Bryane Heaberlin (North Carolina; St. Petersburg, Fla.), Jami Kranich (Villanova; Hamden, Conn.), Abby Smith (Dallas Texans; Dallas, Texas)
DEFENDERS (6): Stephanie Amack (Mustang Blast; Pleasanton, Calif.), Crystal Dunn (North Carolina; Rockville Centre, N.Y.), Julie Johnston (Santa Clara; Mesa, Ariz.), Kassey Kallman (Florida State; Woodbury, Minn.), Mollie Pathman (Duke; Durham, N.C.), Cari Roccaro (Albertson Fury; East Islip, N.Y.)
MIDFIELDERS (6): Morgan Brian (Virginia; St. Simons Island, Ga.), Vanessa DiBernardo (Illinois; Naperville, Ill.), Sarah Killion (UCLA; Fort Wayne, Ind.), Mandy Laddish (Notre Dame; Lee’s Summit, Mo.), Samantha Mewis (UCLA; Hanson, Mass.), Taylor Schram (Penn State; Canonsburg, Pa.)
FORWARDS (6): Kelly Cobb (Duke; Chugiak, Alaska), Maya Hayes (Penn State; West Orange, N.J.), Kealia Ohai (North Carolina; Draper, Utah), Katie Stengel (Wake Forest; Melbourne, Fla.), Chioma Ubogagu (Stanford; Coppell, Texas), Becca Wann (Richmond; Chesterfield, Va.)

PREPARATION SCHEDULE YIELDS SOLID RESULTS FOR U-20 WNT: The USA will head into the 2012 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup having compiled a record of 12-1-0 this year in international matches. The lone loss came against the Women’s World Cup hosts by a 1-0 score on a June trip to Japan. The USA won the second match against the Japanese by a 2-0 score three days later. The USA has been fortunate enough to play nine matches against teams that will be participating in the Women’s World Cup and have compiled a record of 8-1-0 in those games.


Date Opponent Result/Time (ET) U.S. Goalscorers/TV Venue
Feb. 9 Switzerland 10-0 W Johnston, Ohai (2), Horan (3), Brian, Mewis (2), Ubogagu La Manga Club; La Manga, Spain
Feb. 11 Germany 1-0 W Horan La Manga Club; La Manga, Spain
Feb. 13 Norway 2-0 W Ohai, Ubogagu La Manga Club; La Manga, Spain
March 2 Guatemala 6-0 W Horan (3), Johnston, Stengel, Roccaro Estadio Rommel Fernandez; Panama City, Panama
March 4 Cuba 6-0 W Stengel (2), Hayes (2), DiBernardo, Ubogagu Estadio Rommel Fernandez; Panama City, Panama
March 6 Panama 6-0 W Capelle, DiBernardo, Johnston, Hayes (2), Mewis Estadio Rommel Fernandez; Panama City, Panama
March 9 Mexico 4-0 W Johnston, Brian, Horan, Ohai Estadio Rommel Fernandez; Panama City, Panama
March 11 Canada 2-1 W Hayes, Ubogagu Estadio Rommel Fernandez; Panama City, Panama
April 12 China PR 4-1 W Horan (2), Ubogagu, Mewis The Home Depot Center; Carson, Calif.
April 15 China PR 3-0 W Stengel, Ubogagu, Mewis The Home Depot Center; Carson, Calif.
May 19 New Zealand 5-0 W Horan, Ohai, Stengel (2), Ubogagu The Home Depot Center; Carson, Calif.
June 17 Japan 0-1 L Nagai Stadium; Osaka, Japan
June 20 Japan 2-0 W Hayes, Ubogagu J-Green Sakai National Training Center; Osaka, Japan

2012 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup
Video: Ask Cari Roccaro
Video: Kelly Cobb: Alaskan Pioneer
Video: U.S. U-20 WNT Honors History in Hiroshima
Studio 90: U.S. U-20 WNT Ready for World Cup Opener
Studio 90: Training While it’s Raining
Studio 90: Hiroshima Here We Come – U.S. U-20 WNT Arrives in Japan
Feature: DiBernardo Follows in Father’s Footsteps
Feature: Q & A with U-20 WNT Captain Julie Johnston
Release: Swanson Names 21-Player Roster for 2012 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup in Japan
The WNT Blog: U.S. U-20s at Hiroshima Peace Memorial
The WNT Blog: Peace Cranes for U-20 WNT
The WNT Blog: Training by the Big Arch
The WNT Blog: U.S. U-20s Arrive in Japan, Gear Up For Women’s World Cup


  • Sixteen of the 21 players selected by Swanson were born in 1992, three were born in 1993 and two – defenders Stephanie Amack and Cari Roccaro – were born in 1994, meaning they are age-eligible for the 2014 FIFA Under-20 Women’s World Cup in Canada.
  • The youngest player selected was Amack, who was born two days before Christmas in 1994 and will not turn 18 until the end of the year. She is the only player on the roster still in high school.
  • Swanson selected one rising high school senior (Amack), two graduating high school seniors (Roccaro and goalkeeper Abby Smith), one graduated high school senior (goalkeeper Bryane Heaberlin who enrolled early at UNC), six rising sophomores and 11 rising juniors.
  • Thirteen different colleges are represented on the roster, with three players from UNC and two each from UCLA, Penn State and Duke.
  • Twenty different youth clubs are represented on the roster from 18 different states.
  • Eleven different players have scored for the USA in international matches this year, nine of whom made the World Cup roster. Chioma Ubogagu leads the team with eight goals this year while Maya Hayes is the USA’s top scorer at this level with 12 career international goals.
  • Five players on the U.S. roster were a part of the USA’s 2010 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup Team in Germany: GK Bryane Heaberlin (DNP), defender Crystal Dunn (4 games/4 starts, 390 minutes), defender Mollie Pathman (2/0, 76), midfielder Samantha Mewis (1/0, 10) and forward Maya Hayes (4/2, 214, 2 assists).
  • Only Dunn (90 minutes) and Hayes (45 minutes off the bench) played against Ghana two years ago in Germany.
  • Four players on this year’s U-20 roster played for the USA in the 2008 FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup in New Zealand: Dunn (4/4, 480), Mewis (5/4, 441), midfielder Mandy Laddish (2/1, 64) and midfielder Morgan Brian (1/1, 90).
  • U-17 goalkeeper Bryane Heaberlin has played the most matches in the net this year, starting 10 international games while compiling a 9-1-1 record.
  • The USA has played three African teams in the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup, two of them in Germany two years ago, and holds a 1-0-2 record in those matches. The USA defeated DR Congo 2-1 in Russia in 2006 and tied Ghana and Nigeria by 1-1 scores in 2010. The Nigeria game was in the quarterfinal, a match the USA eventually lost in a controversial penalty kick shootout in which U.S. goalkeeper Bianca Henniger saved two penalties from the same player, both of which were ordered retaken by the referee.

U.S. U-20 WNT head coach Steve Swanson
USA vs. Ghana Pre-Game Quotes
On opening play in the U-20 Women’s World Cup:
“This tournament culminates a very long journey for us. We’ve been together for the better part of a year and half and it’s been a lot of hard work for these players. I think they’ve done a great job coming together and I think we’ve got a good group that has come together and is very motivated and very united. We’re excited to get the tournament going against Ghana on Monday and we know it’s going to be a very competitive game. We have a great deal of respect for Ghana and their players and the caliber of team they have in this tournament.”

On Hiroshima Big Arch Stadium:
“The pitch seems very nice. We love the stadium and I think it will be a tremendous venue for this group.”

On the stifling heat and humidity in Hiroshima:
“The heat and humidity is something we expect at this time of the year. I think we’ve prepared for that. Once it was determined (that this tournament) would be in Japan we knew what we would potentially be getting as far as the weather, so some of our preparation, especially down the stretch, had that in mind.”

On the USA’s style of play:
“There’s a lot of respect in our country for the style of play that the Japanese women’s team has had and continues to display, especially in these last two tournaments, the World Cup and the Olympics. Our country is a large country so we draw players from a number of different coaching styles and styles of play. I think we do want to take some things from the Japanese style. The Japanese have great technique and I hope our team will show that. They have in the past. I think we are a bit different than some other teams in that we try to move the ball and have mobility between the lines. Hopefully, it’s an attractive team to watch and a fun style for our team to play.”

On the goals for the tournament:
“We’re excited to be here in this country. We realize the tradition that U.S. Women’s Soccer has had around the world and we’ll try to do everything we can to uphold that tradition. Obviously, we want to have strong performances in our games. We feel we can compete for the World Cup and that’s our goal. But at this age group there are also other goals and we want to try to continue to develop our players so they can one day make the full team. That’s a very important part of women’s national team development and a tournament like this in country like this with this kind of publicity and love for the women’s game can go a long way to help us accomplish that so we really appreciate being here.”

0.23 Goals allowed per international match by the U.S. U-20s this year
1 International game out of 13 in which the USA has been shut out in 2012 (1-0 loss to JPN on 6/17)
3 Goals allowed by the USA in 13 international matches this year
3.92 Goals scored per international match by the U.S. U-20s this year
5 Goals scored by Maya Hayes in CONCACAF qualifying to lead the team
6 Players who are tied for the team lead in assists this year with four each
6 U-19/U-20 Women’s World Cups that the USA has qualified for
25 Players to see action in a U.S. U-20 international match this year
37 Career U-20 caps for Hayes, the most on the Women’s World Cup roster
53 Goals scored by the USA in 13 international matches this year
945 Minutes played in international matches this year by Kassey Kallman, by far the team leader

Ghana Football Association
Founded: 1957 (Joined FIFA in 1958)
Head Coach: Robert Sackey
Best FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup Finish: 11th place (2010)



  • The U.S. and Ghana have met just one time at the U-20 level (and never at the full national team level) with that match coming in the opening game of the 2010 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup in Dresden, Germany. Ghana shocked the USA with a seventh-minute goal from Elizabeth Cudjoe and had the Americans chasing the game until that team’s leading scorer Sydney Leroux tied the match with a 70th-minute goal off an assist from current U-20 WNT leading scorer Maya Hayes.
  • While the USA out-shot the Africans 25-15, the match ended 1-1. The USA would go on to defeat Switzerland and South Korea to take first place in the group while Ghana lost to South Korea 4-2 and beat Switzerland 2-0, but saw its World Cup end at the group stage.

GOALKEEPERS (3): 1-Patricia Mantey, 16-Nana Asantewaa, 21-Margaret Otoo
DEFENDERS (7): 2-Rebecca Asante, 3-Grace Adams, 4-Cynthia Yiadom, 5-Rosemary Ampem, 7-Linda Addai, 12-Janet Egyir, 14-Faustina Ampah
MIDFIELDERS (7): 6-Mercy Myles, 8-Elizabeth Addo, 10-Priscilla Saahene, 11-Deborah Afriyie, 13-Jennifer Cudjoe, 15-Mary Essiful, 18-Beatrice Sesu
FORWARDS (4): 9-Alice Danso, 17-Veronica Appiah, 19-Candice Osei-Agyemang, 20-Florance Dadson


  • Ghana qualified for the 2012 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup by defeating Namibia 10-0 in a two-leg aggregate series before defeating South Africa in two legs in the next round. Ghana then rolled over Tunisia with a 7-2 aggregate win over two legs to earn its berth to Japan.
  • Ghana’s U-17 team will also participate in the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup in Azerbaijan.
  • At the 2010 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup, Ghana scored five goals and conceded five goals.
  • Like many female youth national teams around the world, Ghana features an American player with dual citizenship. Forward Candace Osei-Agyemang plays at the University of Arizona.
  • Ghana has brought an experienced roster to Japan with 16 players having participated in a FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup and eight have played in Germany two years ago in the U-20 WWC.
  • All eight played against the USA two years ago in Germany.



On the field for the USA:
June 20, 2012 – J-Green Sakai National Training Center, Osaka, Japan
International Friendly

USA 2 Hayes 41; Ubogagu 71

USA: 1-Bryane Heaberlin; 4-Crystal Dunn, 8-Julie Johnston (capt.), 3-Cari Roccaro, 2-Mollie Pathman (19-Stephanie Amack, 72), 16-Sarah Killion (10-Mandy Laddish, 63), 12-Vanessa DiBernardo (15-Sam Mewis, 46), 6-Morgan Brian (13-Ashley Meier, 82), 20-Maya Hayes, 14-Katie Stengel (11-Lindsey Horan, 63), 7-Kealia Ohai (9-Chioma Ubogagu, 46)
Subs Not Used: 5-Kassey Kallman, 17-Olivia Brannon, 24-Jami Kranich, 18-Abby Smith
Head Coach: Steve Swanson

JPN: 12-Arisa Mochizuki (21-Manami Muraoka, 71); 17-Naoko Wada, 20-Mami Kanazawa, 3-Riho Sakamoto (2-Shiori Kinoshita, 68), 6-Ayu Nakada, 7-Nozomi Fujita (8-Hikaru Naomoto, 68), 18-Yu Nakasato (9-Yoko Tanaka, 28), 11-Hanae Shibata, 16-Haruna Kawashima (19-Ayaka Michigami, 46), 14-Chika Kato (10-Kumi Yokoyama, 74), 22-Asuka Nishikawa (13-Mina Tanaka, 74)
Subs Not Used: 1-Sakiko Ikeda; 15-Yushika Nakamura, 4-Tomoko Muramatsu, 5-Haruka Hamada
Head Coach: Hiroshi Yoshida


Last on the field vs. Ghana:
July 14 2010 – Rudolf-Harbig Stadium; Dresden, Germany
2010 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup – Group Play

USA 1 Leroux 70
GHA 1 E. Cudjoe 7

USA: 1-Bianca Henninger; 3-Rachel Quon, 2-Toni Pressley, 4-Crystal Dunn, 5-Kendall Johnson; 20-Amber Brooks, 11-Christine Nairn (10-Teresa Noyola, 54), 12-Zakiya Bywaters (Courtney Verloo, 77), 9-Kristie Mewis; 6-Vicki DiMartino (16-Maya Hayes, 46), 19-Sydney Leroux (capt.)
Subs not used: 8-Samantha Mewis, 13-Mollie Pathman, 14-Meg Morris, 15-Jenna Richmond, 17-Casey Short, 18-Adrianna Franch, 21-Bryane Heaberlin.
Head Coach: Jill Ellis

GHA: 21-Patricia Mantey; 4-Janet Egyir, 5-Rosemary Ampem, 12-Mantenn Kobblah, 18-Edem Atovor, 6-Elizabeth Cudjoe (7-Samira Suleman, 67), 11-Deborah Afriyie, 13-Mercy Myles (capt.) (8-Elizabeth Addo, 35), 15-Juliet Achempong, 9-Florence Dadson, 17-Faiza Ibrahim (19-Candice Osei-Agyemang, 83).
Subs not used: 1-Fafali Dumahisi, 2-Felicia Dapaah, 3-Henrietta Annie, 10-Priscilla Saahene, 14-Fauzia Mustapha, 16-Nana Asantewaa, 20-Cynthia Adobia
Head Coach: James Dadzie

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