Lloyd, Sauerbrunn named new USWNT captains

Posted at 2:16 PM, Jan 09, 2016
and last updated 2016-01-09 14:16:46-05

With the retirement of Abby Wambach and an injury to Christie Rampone, the United States Women's National Team has named two new captains heading into Olympic qualifying.

USWNT Head Coach Jill Ellis announced midfielder Carli Lloyd and defender Becky Sauerbrunn will be the new captains on Saturday.

Both women played huge roles during the 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup Championship in July, including a three-goal performance from Lloyd in the final against Japan.

"Christie and Abby have been phenomenal leaders for this team for a long time, and we are forever grateful for their far-reaching contributions," Ellis said in a release. "As we move into the next phase of this program, I've selected two captains who I know will represent us extremely well on and off the field and will help facilitate the positive direction of this team."

Lloyd, 33, has 211 caps with the team, the eight most in U.S. history, and lead the team with 18 goals for the U.S. in 2015. She also captained the team in four matches during the World Cup, including the championship game.

She was also the Golden Ball winner as the top player at the 2015 World Cup and the Silver Boot winner for second leading scorer in the tournament.

"I never thought I would be captaining the National Team," Lloyd said. "At this stage in my career, I'm ready to take on this type of leadership role."

Sauerbrunn, 30, has 96 caps with the team and co-captained FC Kansas City during their two NWSL title year. She has also won the NWSL Defender of the Year award in all three years the league has existed.

"It's a true honor to be named captain of this team," Sauerbrunn said. "I look at this group and what it's accomplished and the hunger we still have for the things not yet accomplished and I'm constantly amazed."

When both players are on the field at the same time, Lloyd will wear the captain's armband, according to U.S. Soccer.