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Alex Morgan USWNT roster snub, explained: Why two-time World Cup champion’s Olympic spot is in question

The 2024 Olympics are just around the corner, but U.S. women’s national team star forward Alex Morgan could find herself on the outside looking in.

With less than seven months before the Summer Games kick off in Paris, athletes are starting to solidify their spots. That’s no different for the USWNT, with the soccer squad set to kick off the inaugural Concacaf W Gold Cup later this month in an excellent precursor to the Olympic tournament in July.

When the USWNT announced its roster for the Gold Cup on Wednesday, though, Morgan was a surprise omission. A co-captain at the 2023 World Cup, the veteran striker has repped the red, white and blue for more than a decade, but a younger forward group is taking the reins.

While the Olympic roster is still months from being finalized, the squad competing in the Gold Cup likely provides a window into the plans of the coaching staff. So Morgan’s status for the Summer Games is very much in question.

Here is what to know about the two-time World Cup champion’s absence from the USWNT roster. 

MORE: Lindsey Horan calls out U.S. soccer fans, NWSL players

Where is Alex Morgan?

Several notable names were left off the Concacaf women’s roster for the United States (Becky Sauerbrunn and Kelley O’Hara among them), but the biggest one undoubtedly is Morgan.

The 34-year-old has been a key cog in the national program since joining the senior team in 2010. She has taken part in four World Cups and three Olympics, but she may not be getting a fourth trip to the Summer Games. 

Interim head coach Twila Kilgore was asked about Morgan being left off the roster after Wednesday’s announcement. While she did not give an exact reason in Morgan’s case, she did state that the program will continue to monitor all those in consideration for a roster spot, even those left off the Gold Cup squad.

“In terms of Alex, I guess this just goes for really everybody that’s not here — everything that happens in the Gold Cup will matter in terms of the future and everything that is happening outside of the Gold Cup will matter in the future,” Kilgore said. “We recognize that there’s multiple players that aren’t going to be in an environment that we’re still looking at, but are still very much so in the mix.

“So we will be watching and we want to pick the best team and it’s going to be very competitive.”

Morgan’s omission may come as a surprise on the surface given her history with the team, but the player out on the pitch over the last year is far from the dominant force Morgan has been in the past.

While her all-around play is still elite, the lack of goals stands out. Morgan has not scored for the USWNT since last February. Excluding the 2020 COVID year, her two goals in 2024 represent the lowest amount of goals for Morgan in a calendar year with the program.

Her scoreless streak for club and country reached 13 games last summer before she scored two late-season goals for the San Diego Wave.

Yet Morgan is still more than capable of contributing on the scoresheet despite her slump. The striker finished 2023 with five assists with the USWNT, the most in a year in her career with the senior squad. However, at her position, she is expected to finish.  

USWNT roster for CONCACAF W Gold Cup 2024

The following 23 players were called into the United States squad for the 2024 Gold Cup across four host cities in the U.S.

Pos Player Age Club
GK Jane Campbell 28 Houston Dash (USA)
GK Casey Murphy 27 North Carolina Courage (USA)
GK Alyssa Naeher 35 Chicago Red Stars (USA)
DEF Alana Cook 26 OL Reign (USA)
DEF Abby Dahlkemper 30 San Diego Wave (USA)
DEF Tierna Davidson 25 Gotham FC (USA)
DEF Crystal Dunn 31 Gotham FC (USA)
DEF Emily Fox 25 Arsenal (ENG)
DEF Naomi Girma 23 San Diego Wave (USA)
DEF Casey Krueger 33 Washington Spirit (USA)
DEF Jenna Nighswonger 23 Gotham FC (USA)
MID Korbin Albert 20 Paris Saint-Germain (FRA)
MID Sam Coffey 25 Portland Thorns (USA)
MID Lindsey Horan 29 Olympique Lyonnais (FRA)
MID Rose Lavelle 28 Gotham FC (USA)
MID Olivia Moultrie 18 Portland Thorns (USA)
MID Emily Sonnett 30 Gotham FC (USA)
FWD Mia Fishel 22 Chelsea FC (ENG)
FWD Midge Purce 28 Gotham FC (ENG)
FWD Trinity Rodman 21 Washington Spirit (USA)
FWD Jaedyn Shaw 19 San Diego Wave (USA)
FWD Sophia Smith 23 Portland Thorns (USA)
FWD Lynn Williams 30 Gotham FC (USA)
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