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Alex Morgan, Carli Lloyd, Megan Rapinoe and their teammates clear favourites to win gold
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Team USA continues to dominate women’s football at international level and will be looking to follow up their victory at the 2019 FIFA World Cup with their fifth gold medal since their sport was first introduced to the Olympics at Atlanta in 1996.
They are in formidable form in 2021, having won 11 and drawn just one of their 12 games this year, scoring 37 goals, leaving them ranked number one in the world and clear favourites in Japan.
New coach Vlatko Andonovski has very much retained the spine of the team that triumphed in France two years ago, his 22-woman squad including such familiar faces as Alex Morgan, Carli Lloyd, Tobin Heath, Rose Lavelle, Crystal Dunn and Megan Rapinoe.
The latter became something of a protest icon at the World Cup for using her platform to stand up for LGBT+ rights and to stick it to then-US president Donald Trump but is now 36 and unlikely to start every game.
With the tournament’s group stage kicking off in Tokyo two days before the 2020 Games’s opening ceremony has even been held, Andonovski is expected to rotate his players to keep them fresh amid a tight fixture schedule.
His side kick off their campaign on Wednesday 21 July with a tricky opening tie against Sweden in Tokyo, before facing New Zealand in Saitama on 24 July and then Australia in Kashima on 27 July.
Here’s Andonovski’s squad in full:
Goalkeepers
Jane Campbell
Adrianna Franch
Alyssa Naeher
Defenders
Abby Dahlkemper
Tierna Davidson
Crystal Dunn
Casey Krueger
Kelley O’Hara
Becky Sauebrun
Emily Sonnett
Midfielders
Julie Ertz
Lindsey Horan
Rose Lavelle
Catarina Macario
Kristie Mewis
Samantha Mewis
Forwards
Tobin Heath
Carli Lloyd
Alex Morgan
Christen Press
Megan Rapinoe
Lynn Williams
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Megan Rapinoe of the USA celebrates with teammates
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