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The U.S. women's national team will kick off their first tournament of the year with the 2024 Concacaf W Gold Cup. The national team has been drawn into Group A alongside Argentina and Mexico. A playoff between the Dominican Republic and Guyana will determine the fourth team to join the group, and the winner will face USA to begin group play. The group stage is set to begin on Feb. 17 with the final taking place on March 10 at Snapdragon Stadium in San Diego, California. Fans can watch the entire event on Paramount+.

Interim head coach Twila Kilgore has named a 23-player roster for the upcoming event. Kilgore was initially named interim in August 2023 after the USWNT was eliminated from the 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup in the round of 16. The U.S. Soccer Federation eventually named Chelsea FC manager Emma Hayes as the next head coach and extended Kilgore's role at the head of the team till Hayes concludes her club season. 

Kilgore told the media on Wednesday that the roster selection process continues to be a collaborative effort between herself and Hayes. It's likely the reason for so many familiar faces in camps from December to February, only now there's a tournament with bragging rights and a trophy to play for. 

"It's just a great, and also interesting, situation where we're people that have two totally different jobs in this exact moment," Kilgore explained. "She's at Chelsea competing in multiple types of competitions. I'm here taking care of the day-to-day but we are both working towards the future in which I will be supporting her as an assistant to her along with many other people. 

But the collaboration has been really good, and the support is both ways. I did have the ability to go spend some time with her ... see how she runs things in her environment and it was a great experience."

The interim manager had previously stated in a press conference she was hopeful to spend time overseas with Hayes as the duo continues to work together toward the Olympics. Hayes is expected to join the USWNT on the sidelines following the conclusion of Chelsea's season. The London club is in the middle of the domestic season and is currently a quarterfinalist in UEFA's Women's Champions League. 

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For Kilgore, the time in London was beneficial in the short timeline ahead of the Olympics. She said her current focus is on the interim role at hand and how she can continue to be an effective assistant coach once Hayes takes the full-time manager role. The interim head coach spent the time in London learning more about Hayes' coaching methods as she remains focused on being the connective cog between players and Hayes.

"She's a very efficient, methodical, kind, coach. There's nothing that's happening that's not motivated by doing what's right for the team and kindness towards the individual, and there's nothing that's happening by happenstance. Those are qualities that we try and achieve here every day, and that I also admire. And of course, I stole like a few things, that we can include right away and some things that we'll wait for when she comes," she joked. 

"But it was great and very open environment, and I'm very thankful to get that time with her."

The official USWNT Gold Cup roster includes 21 players who were called into December camps to close out 2023 in friendlies against China. The USWNT camp will have 26 participants with Mallory Swanson, Savannah DeMelo, and Gisele Thompson as training players during the tournament. DeMelo was a starter in two 2023 World Cup games. Thompson, a U.S. U20 international recently signed with Angel City FC via the NWSL's Under-18 mechanism. 

Swanson returns to the USWNT environment for the first time since suffering a torn patellar tendon last April that caused her to miss the 2023 World Cup. Despite playing in only six games, Swanson led the national team in scoring in 2023 with seven goals.

Perhaps most notable, however, is who isn't on this list. Longtime USWNT veterans Alex Morgan and Becky Sauerbrunn were both left on the outside looking in, despite both being available for selection. Their exclusion raises major questions about their future with the national team as the summer Olympics loom large on the horizon.

Take a look at the players who made the final cut:

USWNT roster 

Goalkeepers (3): Jane Campbell (Houston Dash), Casey Murphy (North Carolina Courage), Alyssa Naeher (Chicago Red Stars)

Defenders (8): Alana Cook (Seattle Reign FC), Abby Dahlkemper (San Diego Wave FC), Crystal Dunn (NJ/NY Gotham FC), Tierna Davidson (NJ/NY Gotham FC), Emily Fox (Arsenal FC, ENG), Naomi Girma (San Diego Wave FC), Casey Krueger (Washington Spirit), Jenna Nighswonger (NY/NJ Gotham FC)

Midfielders (6): Korbin Albert (Paris Saint-Germain, FRA), Sam Coffey (Portland Thorns FC), Lindsey Horan (Olympique Lyon, FRA), Rose Lavelle (NJ/NY Gotham FC), Olivia Moultrie (Portland Thorns FC), Emily Sonnett (NJ/NY Gotham FC)

Forwards (6): Mia Fishel (Chelsea FC, ENG), Midge Purce (NJ/NY Gotham FC), Trinity Rodman (Washington Spirit), Jaedyn Shaw (San Diego Wave FC), Sophia Smith (Portland Thorns FC), Lynn Williams (NJ/NY Gotham FC)