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Olympic Roster Alternates...And Alex Morgan

This is not an Alex Morgan hate piece. It is far from it. As long as I have been aware of the world around me, I know that Alex Morgan has been one of the greatest athletes to grace the sport of soccer. On and off the field, she has changed how the United States looks at soccer, and along with others, how the rest of the world looks at the USWNT. However, after 16 years, it would be better for the development of this team, to have others on this limited roster.

The Alternates

Many fans argue that Alex Morgan should have at least made the alternate roster, however with the way she is currently playing, and the way she played in the USWNT’s most recent tournaments and friendlies, her performance disproves that point. These are the alternates and why they deserve this spot over her.

Rosters for tournaments outside of the Olympics typically feature three goalies. However, since there are only 18 spaces on the roster, Jane Campbell made it on the alternate list. She has the most saves during this NWSL with the Houston Dash. Though her team is not the best offensively, she is one of the league's best goalkeepers, and that is why they are not at the bottom of the table.

Croix Bethune is a midfielder for the Washington Spirit and with her style of play, she can open up the field and create more chances to score. She is already in the running for the NWSL Rookie of the Year Award and gained more experience by traveling with the team at one of the largest international tournaments.

Hal Hershfelt is also on the Washington Spirit and is a midfielder. She has two goals in 16 games with the Spirit, adding more depth to the midfield. The midfield is where the majority of the game takes place, so having as much depth as possible in those positions benefits the team.

The final alternate is Lynn Williams, NJ/Y Gotham’s forward. Many were disappointed with her absence from the first roster that Hayes made against Korea, however she has proved herself in the past months. She is now the top goalscorer in the NWSL and always finds a way to change the game.

So, Where is Alex Morgan?

Alex Morgan always seems like a no-brainer to add to the USWNT roster, her name just belongs there. However, this season with the San Diego Wave, she has only played 10 games and has not scored a single goal. With the NWSL season at a halfway point, one can wonder “Will she ever be invincible again?”

In the friendlies against Japan, she was creating chances. However, she always seemed to be offside and needed to be in touch with what the midfield was trying to achieve. She has been competing with this team for 16 years, and freeing up an alternate space gives the team a chance to develop into what the modern sport requires.

It is time for a change within the USWNT. The rest of the world has caught up with us and we are not the invincible team we once were. Since the world has changed the way they operate, we must change as well, for the betterment of this amazing team.


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