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W-Leaguers prepare for tournament
Next wave of pro prospects set sights on U-20 World Cup

USL News Release

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

TAMPA, FL -- With the CONCACAF qualifying tournament for the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup beginning Wednesday, the United States and Canada have named their squads for the event. Twenty W-League players are among the two squads who head the two groups in Guatemala City.

The US won the 2008 FIFA U-20 Women’s World CupCanada will face Costa Rica in the opening match of the tournament Wednesday with the United States facing Jamaica in the second Group B game Thursday. The US contest can be seen at 5:30 pm ET on Fox Soccer Channel, which will also carry the semifinals January 28 and the championship January 30. will also carry live streams of all the matches.

Canada, the defending U-20 CONCACAF champions from two years ago, again boast another squad with numerous W-League alumnae. Thirteen players on the team, including six from the Laval Comets, left their preparatory camp in Tampa for the tournament, which is in Central America for the first time.

All six Laval players were on the team in 2009 with Cynthia Leblanc, Rachel Lamarre and Bahar Sansar each in their second campaign with the Comets, who nearly had seven on the team with Catherine Charron-Delage having gone with the team to Tampa.

Helping lead the Canadian team and head coach Carolina Morace is former W-League star Andrea Neil. The former Vancouver Whitecap will oversee three players on the squad from the Caps. Canadian W-League teams Ottawa (1), Quebec City (1) and Toronto (2) also had players named to the team along with one from the Washington Freedom.

Vancouver fans are also slightly familiar with one of the leading players on the American squad with former Whitecap Sydney Leroux among the seven W-League US players. Leroux, and Washington Freedom midfielder Christine Nairn, are the only players on the US team that also participated in the qualifying for the 2008 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup and the final tournament in Chile two years ago. Leroux, the most capped player at the U-20 level, scored five times in the tournament to earn Golden Ball honors as the tournament MVP and Golden Shoe as the top scorer. Nairn had two assists while playing in all six games.

Nairn is joined by two other teammates from Washington. Defender Toni Pressley and striker Tiffany McCarty helped lead the Freedom back to the W-League championship this past fall.

Former New Jersey Wildcat Amber Brooks is one of eight players on the team who finished second at the 2008 FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup in New Zealand, serving as captain on several occasions. Taylor Vancil, a member of Real Colorado this past summer, was the best goalkeeper of the tournament in New Zealand.

Canada Roster

Goalkeeper: Dayle Colpitts, Cythia Leblanc (Laval 2008-09); Defender: Molly Allen (Washington 2009), Vanessa Legault-Cordisco (Laval 2009), Lexi Martin (Toronto 2006-07, 09, Vancouver 08), Bryanna McCarthy (Toronto 2009), Bahar Sansar (Laval 2007, 09), Shannon Woeller (Vancouver 2008-09); Midfielder: Laura Chenard (Quebec City 2010), Rachel Lamarre (Laval 2008-09), Rehana Murani, Christabel Oduro, Gina Pachecho (Ottawa 2007-09), Taylor Patterson, Chelsea Stewart (Vancouver 2008-09); Forward: Julie Casselman (Laval 2009), Adriana Leon, Chloe Malette (Laval 2008-09), Jenna Richardson, Shelina Zadorsky

United States Roster

Goalkeeper: Bianca Henninger, Taylor Vancil (Real Colorado 2009); Defender: Amber Brooks (New Jersey 2007), Vicki DiMartino, Crystal Dunn, Kendall Johnson, Toni Pressley (Washington 2009, Boston 2008), Rachel Quon; Midfielder: Zakiya Bywaters, Elizabeth Eddy, Kristie Mewis, Samantha Mewis, Christine Nairn (Washington 2009), Teresa Noyola, Jenna Richmond, Casey Short (Charlotte 2009); Forward: Maya Hayes, Sydney Leroux (Vancouver 2005), Morgan Marlborough, Tiffany McCarty (Washington 2007-09)

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