Orlando Pride defender Ali Krieger has been named to the allocation list for the U.S. national team for the 2020 season, along with goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris, forward Alex Morgan and defender Emily Sonnett. Defender Shelina Zadorsky was also allocated to the Pride by the Canadian national team.
This is the first time Krieger has been allocated to the national team since 2017 after serving as a mainstay of the team from 2013-17. The defender considered herself out of consideration for the team until she was called up in March 2019, helping the U.S. earn a World Cup victory in France.
The allocation for the 2020 season designates Krieger as an official asset of the top pool of players for the national team as the U.S. prepares for the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo. It also shifts her from NWSL compensation to the compensation set up for national teams players. While the USWNT players are involved in pay dispute litigation, the federation continues to compensate players at a higher rate than NWSL.
Following the Americans’ 2019 World Cup victory, Krieger said she entered this year hungry to make the Olympic roster under new coach Vlatko Andonovski. She missed the 2012 Olympics due to a devastating knee injury and was knocked out of the 2016 Olympics.
At age 35, Krieger’s addition to the U.S. player pool was far from a certainty.
By making the allocation list, Krieger moved one step closer to her goal of winning Olympic gold.
“That’s something that I don’t have — I don’t have an Olympic gold medal,” Krieger said in an interview with Pro Soccer USA in January. “That is what I want and what I strive to achieve, and that is kind of what’s keeping me going.”
Krieger made 12 appearances and added one assist for the Pride during the 2019 season, earning a spot in the NWSL Best XI. She is joined by three other members of the Pride backline — Harris, Zadorsky and Sonnett — on the allocation lists. Harris has now earned more ethan 100 appearances in goal for the Pride, notching 58 saves and one clean sheet over 13 starts last season, while Zadorsky scored one goal over 16 starts for the Pride last season.
Sonnett was acquired by Orlando through a trade during the offseason with the Portland Thorns in exchange for the No. 1 pick in the 2020 NWSL Draft. She spent her past four seasons in Portland, scoring six goals and adding two assists during 72 appearances.
One of the top stars of both the U.S. national team and the Pride, Morgan won the Silver Boot at the 2019 World Cup with six goals. She only made six appearances for the Pride last year, however, before ending her season due to an injury incurred in France.
With five total allocations, the Pride is tied the Chicago Red Stars and the Utah Royals for the most allocated players on its roster.