CHICAGO, IL (via Tampa Bay Sports Commission Release) – The U.S. Women’s National Team will face France in a pair of summer friendlies on June 14 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida, and June 19 at Rentschler Field in East Hartford, Connecticut.
Both matches kick off at 7:30 p.m. ET and will be broadcast live on ussoccer.com. Fans can also follow both games on Twitter @ussoccer_wnt.
Tickets for both games go on sale to the public Friday, May 9, at 10 a.m. ET through ussoccer.com. For the match in Tampa, tickets can also be purchased by phone at 1-800-745-3000 and at all Ticketmaster ticket centers throughout the Tampa Bay region (including Walmart).
For the event in Connecticut, tickets can also be purchased by phone at 1-877-522-8499 (8 a.m. to 10 p.m. ET only) and at the XL Center ticket office starting Monday, May 12 (open Monday-Friday, 12 p.m. to 5 p.m.) [Note: Tickets are not sold at either Raymond James Stadium or Rentschler Field except on the day of the event.]
For both games, groups of 20 or more can obtain an order form at ussoccer.com or call 312-528-1290. Ultimate Fan Tickets (special VIP packages that include a premium ticket, a custom-made official U.S. National Team jersey with name and number, VIP access to the field before and after the game, and other unique benefits) are also available exclusively through ussoccer.com.
As a sponsor of U.S. Soccer, Visa is pleased to offer all Visa cardholders access to an advance ticket sale for both matches before the sale to the general public. This advance sale starts Thursday, May 8, at 10 a.m. ET and runs until Friday, May 9, at 8 a.m. at ussoccer.com. Visa will be the only payment method accepted through the Visa presale and is the preferred card of U.S. Soccer. Terms and conditions apply.
The U.S. and France have not met since the opening match of the 2012 Olympics, when the USA overcame a 2-0 deficit to win 4-2 on its way to winning the gold medal.
France, which is fourth in the latest FIFA Women’s World Rankings, is widely hailed as one of the most talented women’s soccer countries and features some of the world’s best players at their positions. The squad is made up primarily of players from two of top women’s clubs in Europe, Olympique Lyon and Paris Saint-Germain. France was expected to contend for the title at last summer’s UEFA Women’s Championships but was upset on penalty kicks in the quarterfinal round by Denmark despite dominating the match.
The U.S. Women do not have an extensive history against France, having played just 14 times and only twice since 2006. The two most recent encounters, however, were both epic matches in world championships. The USA defeated France 3-1 on July 13, 2011, in the FIFA Women’s World Cup semifinal in Monchengladbach, Germany. The U.S. also won the Olympic curtain raiser 4-2 on July 25, 2012, in Glasgow, Scotland, as Alex Morgan scored twice, while Abby Wambach and Carli Lloyd contributed a goal each.
•The USA is 13-0-1 all-time against France.
•France is off to a fine start in its 2015 Women’s World Cup qualifying campaign, having won all four Group 7 matches to date by a 31-1 margin.
•The U.S. WNT has made one previous appearance at Raymond James Stadium, defeating the Korea Republic 1-0 on Nov. 8, 2008, during the USA’s post-Olympic tour.
•This will be the USA’s sixth appearance in Tampa, having also played three matches at Pepin/Rood Stadium in the 1990s and one at the old Tampa Stadium in 1996.
•The U.S. has played eight previous matches in Connecticut and hold a 5-2-1 overall record when playing in the Nutmeg state. Four of those matches have come at Rentschler Field where the team holds an undefeated 3-0-1 all-time record
•The largest crowd to attend a Women’s National Team game in Connecticut turned up at Rentschler Field in Oct. 2012, as 18,870 saw the U.S. tie Germany 2-2.
Tom Jones was born and raised in a suburb of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and studied English at the University of South Florida from 1982 to 1986.
He began his writing career with the St. Petersburg Evening Independent in 1985. He then went on to work for the St. Petersburg Times from 1987 to 1991, the Tampa Tribune from 1991 to 1996, the St. Petersburg Times again from 1996 to 2000 and the Minneapolis Star-Tribune from 2000 to 2003. He then rejoined the St. Petersburg Times for a third time in his career in 2003, where he worked ever since.
Jones has spent most of his career covering the NHL, including being a beat writer for more than 15 years of the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Minnesota. Wild. He also spent two years on the Tampa Bay Rays beat. He then become a columnist at Times starting in 2007. Jones has won several national and state writing awards, including a top 10 game story in the nation in 1998 as named by the Associated Press Sports Editors.
Over the course of his career, Jones has covered the Olympics, the World Series, the Super Bowl, the Stanley Cup finals, baseball and hockey all-star games, the NCAA basketball tournament and the Frozen Four.
Jones lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Patty, and sons, Sam and Andy.
With over two decades of reporting on professional and collegiate sports for the Tampa Bay Times, through performance and work experience in journalism and broadcasting in television and radio, Rick Stroud has cultivated an impressive list of sources and utilized his knowledge to produce an outstanding body of work in both print and electronic mediums.
During his career, Stroud has reported on national sporting events including 22 Super Bowls, the NCAA Final Four, and the Major League Baseball Playoffs. While working as the beat writer assigned to the University of Florida at the Times, Stroudâ€™s stories documented NCAA rules violations by the football and basketball programs. The stories for which Stroud won second place for Best Investigative Reporting from the Associated Press Sports Editors, led to sanctions against both Gators programs.
Since 2004, Stroud has appeared as an NFL Insider for ESPN2â€™s First Take and is a regular contributor to ESPNâ€™s SportsCenter, NFL Live, Outside the Lines and Herd with Colin Cowherd on ESPN Radio. He also contributes to NFL Networkâ€™s Total Access.
Stroud becan covering the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the National Football League in 1990. Since then, the Bucs have undergone seven coaching changes, the death of owner Hugh Culverhouse and the sale of the franchise to billionaire owner Malcolm Glazer and a stadium referendum. They also celebrated a Super Bowl XXVII victory. His reporting was referenced in Tony Dungyâ€™s best seller, Quiet Strength, particularly because it was Stroud who informed Dungy of the Bucsâ€™ plan to replace him with Giants Super Bowl coach Bill Parcells.
A former Div. I-A baseball player at Arkansas , Stroud brings a unique perspective to sports reporting. During the NFL lockout in 2011, he also served as one of the Timesâ€™ beat writers responsible for covering the Tampa Bay Rays.