Alex Morgan has dropped out of the U.S. women’s soccer team roster for the Paris Olympics as the team undergoes a changing of the guard

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Alex Morgan takes a penalty kick to score the first goal for the United States during the championship match between the United States and Canada on July 18, 2022, in Monterrey, Mexico.


American women’s soccer legend Alex Morgan will not be part of the squad for next month’s Olympics in Paris, a symbol of the changing of the guard underway within the women’s national team.

Head coach Emma Hayes, entering her first major tournament at the helm of the team, revealed her roster for the Paris 2024 Olympics on Wednesday. The 22-player squad, which includes 18 players heading to Paris and four substitutes, includes only eight players from the 2020 Olympic Games, which took place in 2021 in Tokyo, and 10 members of the 2023 World Cup squad.

Morgan’s exclusion from the roster is indicative of a change coming to a team that has enjoyed tremendous success over the past few seasons with a core of incredibly accomplished players. But this generation has found itself outpaced in recent tournaments by other nations, finishing in third place at the Tokyo Games and being eliminated from the 2023 World Cup on penalties in the round of 16. Hayes, recruited after that World Cup disappointment, faces the task of leading the next generation of American women to meet the expectations of success that follow the women’s national team.

Morgan expressed disappointment with the selection, but said she would support the team next month.

“Today I am disappointed that I will not have the opportunity to represent our country on the Olympic stage. This will always be a tournament that is close to my heart and I am extremely proud every time I wear the crest,” she said in an article on X. “In less than a month, I look forward to supporting this team and cheering this team on alongside the rest of our country.

At a news conference, Hayes praised Morgan’s contributions to the national team and her eventful career, but said it was time for the team to move in a different direction. She acknowledged that the Paris squad would feature fewer experienced players than in previous tournaments, with a view to development.

“There is no rite of passage for any team in the world to win an Olympic gold medal and there is no denying that the history of this program has been extremely successful. But the reality is it’s going to take a lot of work to get back to that highest level,” Hayes said. “I think looking at the cap buildup in the team, there has been a lack of development to put players – some of the less experienced players – in positions where they can develop that experience. And I think it’s important that we do that to take the next step.

“I’m not looking back, we have to look forward with a group of players who have left this World Cup behind them. And we’re really looking forward to continuing the work we’ve done after the World Cup. For us, this is an opportunity to show that these lessons will take us much further than last time, but there are no guarantees of anything in life. »

The squad is made up of goalkeepers Casey Murphy and Alyssa Naeher; defenders Tierna Davidson, Emily Fox, Naomi Girma, Casey Krueger, Jenna Nighswonger and Emily Sonnett; midfielders Korbin Albert, Sam Coffey, Lindsey Horan, Rose Lavelle and Catarina Macario; and forwards Crystal Dunn, Trinity Rodman, Jaedyn Shaw, Sophia Smith and Mallory Swanson.

The four substitutes are goalkeeper Jane Campbell, midfielders Hal Hershfelt and Croix Bethune as well as striker Lynn Williams.

“It’s a balanced list. I have considered all the factors that we will need throughout the Olympics and this is one that I am really happy with,” Hayes said.

Part of Hayes’ consideration for the roster was durability and adaptability. Many selected players can play in multiple positions, which will be essential given the relatively short time between matches in France.

“The most important factor is the 16 outfield players who will play a lot of matches – probably, I hope – over a 17-day period,” she said. “Having a roster that can adapt is essential. There are tight deadlines between games, so of course having players on the team who can play more than one position was important for the depth of the team.

This story has been updated with additional reporting.

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