Lindsey Horan and Alex Morgan have been appointed co-captains of the U.S. women’s national team for the upcoming 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup, set to kick off in two weeks. This decision comes after Becky Sauerbrunn, the long-standing team captain, could not make the World Cup squad due to an ongoing injury.
Coach Vlatko Andonovski expressed that Sauerbrunn would always be considered their captain, but the team needed to find a replacement for the tournament. The final decision was made by Andonovski, who stated that he and his staff extensively discussed the matter and would announce it to the rest of the team soon.
Horan and Morgan have previous experience wearing the captain’s armband, with Horan having done so on nine occasions and Morgan on 22 occasions. They are now prepared to share the responsibilities of leadership. Morgan emphasized that the role of captain should not significantly change their approach as leaders and teammates but rather involve advocating for their teammates and coaches, ensuring smooth team dynamics, and being positive team representatives.
Horan expressed her honor in being named co-captain alongside Morgan, stating, “It’s truly an honor, especially here with Alex.” Andonovski acknowledged the leadership qualities of both players, mentioning their vast experience in essential matches and their understanding of what it takes to succeed at the highest level. He believes they will excel as team representatives during the World Cup on and off the field.
Horan will wear the captain’s armband when both Horan and Morgan are on the field, which is expected to be frequent. Morgan, who plays for the San Diego Wave in the National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL), has an impressive record of 206 caps and 121 goals for the USWNT, and this will be her fourth World Cup appearance. Horan, who plays for Lyon in France, has 128 caps and 27 goals and will participate in her second World Cup.
Despite their new roles, Morgan believes that leadership within the team will be a collective effort, just as it was during the 2019 World Cup when the U.S. had three captains. She acknowledged the numerous natural leaders within the squad and emphasized the shared responsibility of everyone to support each other.
The team’s decision to appoint co-captains reflects their belief in the strength and unity of the group. With the World Cup approaching, Horan and Morgan are ready to lead the team and make their mark in the tournament.