Women, that is.
The U.S. women's national team is in town for Saturday's friendly against Canada at RFK Stadium, but it is not too early to look ahead to the summer calendar leading to the Olympics in China.
Coach Pia Sundhage told the Insider today that the Americans will play at Sweden and Norway in early July and are planning to face Brazil twice later that month -- in Denver and San Diego. The European trip is set, but the Brazilian games have yet to be finalized. Brazil is notorious for not utilizing its full roster for friendlies, so it remains to be seen who will be available for the U.S. matches.
Meantime, the U.S. players are preparing to be allocated to clubs in the new national league, which will launch next spring. Those decisions could be made in the coming weeks. The players will have a say in where they end up, though their top choices are not guaranteed.
"I haven't told them my preference yet," said star striker Abby Wambach, who played for the Freedom during her WUSA days. "It's something I have to talk about with my family. I saw [the Freedom coaches] at practice the last few days, so we have been in contact. It's just really important, especially for the people of D.C. to understand, that the Freedom obviously has my heart in terms of me having played here before, but making sure what is best for the league in general is most important. I can live anywhere. Maybe some of the other players don't feel the same way; they really want to have their choice. I am more willing to do what is best for the situation. I'm adaptable."
She said she would be happy in any of the seven markets: D.C., New York/New Jersey, Los Angeles, St. Louis, Dallas, Chicago or Boston.
Midfielder Carli Lloyd, a Jersey girl, said she would like to play for the N.Y./N.J. team, which will be based at Rutgers. Forward Heather O'Reilly, also from that area, seems likely to end up there as well. Lloyd said her second choice is Washington.
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