Kelley O’Hara, Sam Kerr Prepare for Tournament of Nations
Photo by Robyn McNeil, ISI Photos.
Written by Lauren Murray, Sky Blue FC Contributing Writer
As the National Women’s Soccer League is approaching its second international break of the 2017 season, two players from Sky Blue FC will continue to see minutes on the field before their next NWSL game on August 4.
Kelley O’Hara and Sam Kerr have been called up by the United States and Australia women’s national teams respectively to participate in the Tournament of Nations, which will be held in three cities along the west coast of the United States. The United States will host Australia, Brazil and Japan, each playing three games within a week span.
The two Sky Blue FC stars will find each other on the opposite ends of the field once again on July 27 as the United States and Australia are scheduled to play at 10 p.m. ET at CenturyLink Field in Seattle, Washington.
The U.S. Women’s National Team holds a 25-0-2 record overall against the Matildas. In their last meeting on June 8, 2015, during the FIFA Women’s World Cup, the United States won 3-1. Kerr played the full 90 minutes in the match.
Prior to the World Cup, these two teams faced off three more times between 2012-2013. On Oct. 20, 2013, Kerr entered the match in the 28th minute while O’Hara was not named to the United States roster because she was recovering from reconstructive ankle surgery.
The last time O’Hara and Kerr matched up on the field for international play was Sept. 16, 2012, during the Fan Tribute Tour. O’Hara was in the Starting XI and played the full match, while Kerr came into play in the 58th minute.
Since then, the two international stars did not find themselves on the pitch together until 2015 when Kerr was traded from the Western New York Flash to Sky Blue FC before the season started. This season, they have played in 13 games on the field together for Sky Blue FC. O’Hara assisted Kerr on one of her 11 goals so far this season.
Kerr made her international debut in February 2009 at the age of 15. She has accumulated 50 appearances for the Matildas and has scored six goals so far in her international career. She and the Matildas will play Japan on July 30 and Brazil on August 3. The Matildas have not played together since March 8, 2017, in the Algarve Cup.
O’Hara received her first call up to the national team in December 2009 and earned her first cap in March 2010. Since then, she has tallied 95 more appearances, closing in on the 100 cap milestone. She will obtain 99 if she plays against the Matildas, Brazil on July 30 and Japan on August 3.
Both players remained in Seattle following their heartbreaking 5-4 loss to Seattle Reign FC on July 22 to train with their respective national teams.
About the Author: Lauren Murray is a senior at Ithaca College in Ithaca, New York, pursuing two bachelor’s degrees in journalism and sport studies. She previously worked as the Assistant Sports Editor of her college’s award-winning newspaper, The Ithacan. As editor, she was awarded First Place for Sports Coverage and Third Place for News Story by the New York Press Association.