Hope Solo is indeed on the list to play in the National Women’s Soccer League, likely ending (at least for now) any speculation that she may choose another path. So is Heather Mitts, all indications of retirement to the contrary.
That player pool only has 29 players. Twenty-three will be allocated. Cox is pregnant. Jeff Kassouf reports that Meghan Klingenberg is staying in Sweden for now. Yael Averbuch also is staying there. Whitney Engen is in England. That leaves the two Class of 2012 players who’ll surely be high on the draft board next week — Kristie Mewis and Christine Nairn, who has already graduated from Penn State.
Not officially listed in the player pool but certainly under national team consideration is Christen Press. She’s … staying in Sweden.
So if there are no surprises, it’s only because the player pool is so small. And it includes everyone who played for the USWNT in 2011 and 2012 except Lindsay Tarpley and Brittany Taylor. Even if you go back to 2010, you only add six names: Sarah Huffman, Casey Nogueira, Meghan Schnur, Cat Whitehill, the retired Kate Markgraf and the really retired Kristine Lilly.
And that small player pool is the reason the USWNT needs a domestic league. You don’t want to be two injuries away from calling in people who aren’t playing at an elite level.