PISCATAWAY, NJ – Rutgers’ Carli Lloyd (Delran, NJ) has been invited back for a second training session with the full U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team at the Home Depot Center in Carson, CA.
Lloyd will join the team on May 24 for a session that will last until June 4. The National Team is in the midst of a four-month residency camp, preparing for the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens this August. Approximately 30 players are competing for one of the 18 Olympic roster spots and four alternate bids, a team that will be finalized in mid-July.
This will mark Lloyd’s third experience with the National Team this spring. The rising Rutgers senior just returned from a five-day training session (May 11-15), and on April 21, she was brought in for a day of training while attending the Under-21 National Team Camp at the Home Depot Center.
“The coaches said that last week was one of the more relaxed weeks of training they have had recently,” said Lloyd. “It was good to get in during one of the more laid-back weeks. It’s a very different environment, and I was nervous at first. But, as the week went along, I became more comfortable.”
The rules for professional players allow the National Team staff to evaluate a player for just two weeks before they must either offer a contract or release that player. As a current college player, Lloyd is in a much more fluid situation, as there is no limit on the time a collegian can spend training with the National Team without a contract.
The next few months could find Lloyd training with the full National Team, the U-21 National Team, or both. The full National Team will mix training at the Home Depot Center with four friendlies (vs. Japan in Louisville June 6; vs. Canada in Nashville July 3; vs. Australia in Minnesota July 21; and vs. China in Hartford Aug. 1) during the next 10 weeks. The Olympic Team will then leave the U.S. Aug. 2 to complete its pre-Games training, with Olympic competition beginning on Aug. 11. The U-21s will train in Brazil May 20-31 and at the Home Depot Center June 18-27 in preparation for the 2004 Nordic Cup, which will be held in Iceland July 19-30.
Lloyd has had a very successful spring with the U-21s, attending five camps, and this marks her third consecutive year training with the national program. During the most recent Under-21 Camp (April 16-25), the U-21s played the full National Team twice, and Lloyd was a factor in both matches. She scored the U-21’s lone goal in a 3-1 loss, then helped set up a score in a 1-1 tie. Lloyd also went to China March 17-29 with the Under-21 National Team for a three-match trip, and she had a goal and an assist as the U.S. defeated the full Chinese National Team 2-0 March 28 in Jiangsu. Lloyd scored the first goal in the 18th minute, then assisted on the second goal just two minutes later as the Americans defeated the world’s fifth-ranked team in front of 10,000 fans. The U.S. also defeated Shanghai SVA, one of the top club teams in the country, 4-0 March 21. Lloyd started the match and scored the fourth U.S. goal in the 58th minute.
Lloyd led RU with 28 points (13 G, 2 A) this past fall, earning third-team All-America honors from the National Soccer Coaches Association (NSCAA) and Soccerbuzz. A first-team all-BIG EAST Conference selection for the third consecutive year, she received a spot on both the NSCAA and Soccerbuzz Mid-Atlantic Region All-First Teams.
The Rutgers women’s soccer team (10-7-5, 3-2-1 BIG EAST) advanced to the second round of the 2003 NCAA Tournament and the quarterfinals of the BIG EAST Tournament.