As part of its ongoing U.S. Soccer Centennial celebration, the U.S. Women’s National Team unveiled its All-Time Best XI and Portland Thorns FC fans will find a familiar name on the roster.
Thorns FC forward Alex Morgan garnered enough votes to earn a spot on the All-Time Best XI roster, which is quite the recognition for someone whose U.S. Women’s National Team career is still relatively young. Morgan made her debut with the senior team in 2010 and already in three short years has come to be viewed as one of the best players to put on a United States jersey in the program’s history.
According to the federation, in an effort to create a fair and reasonable process to determine the All-Time Best XI, U.S. Soccer appointed a committee of soccer historians and former players, coaches, media members and administrators at the National Team to determine the eligible players.
The committee determined the list of eligible players for selection to the Best XI, as well as the criteria to be considered by the list of voters. Voters for the Best XI included 56 former players and administrators, as well as media members. The criteria the voters considered in determining their All-Time Best XI was:
- Starter or key contributor to overall success on the field, especially in World Cups
- Longevity, overall performance and talent on the field with the U.S. Men's or Women's National Team
- Impact on the legacy of the U.S. Men's or Women's National Team program
The youngest player voted to the team, Morgan is one of three active players to make the roster alongside forward Abby Wambach (Western New York) and defender Christie Rampone (Sky Blue FC). Morgan has scored 44 goals in 70 games for the U.S. Women’s National Team, including the game-winning strike in the 123rd minute of extra time to help lift the United States over Canada and into the gold medal match of the London Olympics in 2012. Part of the 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup roster, Morgan registered two goals and one assist in five substitute appearances as the U.S. took second place in the tournament.
For Thorns FC, Morgan finished the inaugural 2013 NWSL season as the club’s Golden Boot winner with eight goals and five assists and tallied an assist in a 2-0 win over Western New York in the NWSL Championship despite missing the three previous games recovering from a sprained MCL in her left knee.
Calculated by total votes, U.S. Soccer's All-Time Women's Best XI is arranged in a 4-3-3 formation and listed below in alphabetical order by position:
Goalkeeper - Briana Scurry 1994-2008 (31 votes)
Defender - Brandi Chastain 1988-2004 (31)
Defender - Joy Biefeld (Fawcett) 1987-2004 (56)
Defender - Carla Werden (Overbeck) 1988-2000 (49)
Defender - Christie Rampone (Pearce) 1997-present (46)
Midfielder - Michelle Akers 1985-2000 (55)
Midfielder - Julie Foudy 1988-2004 (40)
Midfielder - Kristine Lilly 1987-2010 (55)
Forward - Mia Hamm 1987-2004 (56)
Forward - Alex Morgan 2010-present (15)
Forward - Abby Wambach 2001-present (52)
Listed below are the full voting results for all eligible players (members of the Best XI in bold). The final vote tally for each player is provided in parentheses.
Briana Scurry (31), Hope Solo (24), Mary Harvey (1)
Joy Biefeld Fawcett (56), Carla Werden Overbeck (49), Christie Rampone Pearce (46), Brandi Chastain (31), Kate Markgraf Sobrero (9), Lori Chalupny (5), Ali Krieger (2), Rachel Buehler (1), Linda Hamilton (1), Heather Mitts (1), Cat Reddick Whitehill (1), Stephanie Lopez Cox (0), Lori Henry (0), Amy LePeilbet (0), Kelley O'Hara (0)
Michelle Akers (55), Kristine Lilly (55), Julie Foudy (40), Shannon Boxx (13), Carli Lloyd (13), Shannon MacMillan (8), Megan Rapinoe (6), Heather O'Reilly (5), Shannon Higgins (4), Tobin Heath (1), Tiffany Roberts (1), Tisha Venturini (1), Lauren Holiday Cheney (0), Lorrie Fair (0), Angela Hucles (0), Lindsay Tarpley (0), Aly Wagner (0)
Mia Hamm (56), Abby Wambach (52), Alex Morgan (15), Carin Gabarra Jennings (13), April Heinrichs (12), Tiffeny Milbrett (10), Cindy Parlow Cone (1), Sydney Leroux (0), Amy Rodriguez (0)