One of the things that Sermanni was well known for with his work with the Australian national team was youth development.
The current U.S. squad has eight players over the age of 30, and there are serious questions as to whether many players representing the core of the squad will be still playing at a high enough level in 2015, the year of the next major tournament for the USWNT.
By the 2015 World Cup, Hope Solo will be 33, Christie Rampone will be 40, Heather Mitts 37, Amy LePeilbet 33, Shannon Boxx 38 and Abby Wambach 35.
The next three years will be a serious period of development for the USWNT, and Sermanni will need to start taking a look at some new options very soon.
Crystal Dunn, Julie Johnston and Kealia Ohai shined with the U-20 team that recently won the U-20 World Cup, and there are several players like Whitney Engen, Meghan Klingenberg and Christen Press who barely missed this summer’s Olympic squad.
Lindsey Horan, who recently skipped out playing NCAA soccer for the University of North Carolina to sign a reported six-figure deal with Paris St. Germain, is another option for the squad.
With countries like Germany, Australia, France, Japan, Brazil, Sweden and even Canada closing the gap on the United States, youth development will be key.
The Fan Tribute Tour, a 10-game celebration tour of the USWNT’s gold medal, organized by U.S. Soccer, has been fantastic, but it has also shown how countries like Australia and Germany are chomping at the bit to knock the U.S. off the top perch.
When Sermanni takes over on January 1, the U.S. squad needs to forget about its past successes, and former coach Pia Sundhage’s successes and begin to move forward.
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