The U.S. women's national team will commence 2014 without one of its biggest stars.
Forward Alex Morgan is unable to participate in the women's national team's January training camp in California, as she has a stress reaction in her injured left ankle and is slated to wear a protective boot for "several weeks" according to a U.S. Soccer press release. Morgan initially suffered the injury while training in San Antonio in October.
"It's an injury that's a bit more serious than we thought so we'll take the appropriate action to make sure she's completely healed before getting her back on the field," U.S. women's manager Tom Sermanni said. "It's just an injury that takes time to heal. We're putting no time frame on her whatsoever. What's most important is that when she's ready to go, she's healthy and able to perform at her highest level."
While Morgan remains on the mend, her teammates will train at StubHub Center in preparation for a friendly against rival Canada on Jan. 31 at Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas. The camp runs from Jan. 8-15, and Sermanni will then select a pared-down roster for the match.
Sermanni's 28-player camp roster includes all-time international goals record holder Abby Wambach, fellow forward star Sydney Leroux, star goalkeeper Hope Solo and captain Christie Rampone. Here is the roster in full:
GOALKEEPERS: Nicole Barnhart (FC Kansas City), Ashlyn Harris (Washington Spirit), Jill Loyden (Sky Blue FC), Alyssa Naeher (Boston Breakers), Hope Solo (Seattle Reign FC)
DEFENDERS: Rachel Buehler (Portland Thorns FC), Stephanie Cox (Seattle Reign FC), Crystal Dunn (North Carolina), Whitney Engen (Tyresö), Meghan Klingenberg (Tyresö), Ali Krieger (Washington Spirit), Kristie Mewis (Boston Breakers), Christie Rampone (Sky Blue FC), Becky Sauerbrunn (FC Kansas City)
MIDFIELDERS: Yael Averbuch (Washington Spirit), Morgan Brian (Virginia), Amber Brooks (Portland Thorns FC), Lauren Holiday (FC Kansas City), Julie Johnston (Santa Clara), Carli Lloyd (WNY Flash), Heather O'Reilly (Boston Breakers), Megan Rapinoe (Lyon), Erika Tymrak (FC Kansas City)FORWARDS