As far as the latest United States Women's National Team call up, one Sky Blue is back; another is on the injury list.
Kelley O'Hara, the Sky Blue defender/midfielder who made a huge impact during the American's Women's World Cup run last summer, is back in the United States training camp, which begins on January 5.
Christie Rampone, the captain of both the U.S. team and Sky Blue FC, will miss the next four-to-six weeks while recovering from knee surgery she had just before Christmas. Rampone, who will be 41 this year, played sparingly during the World Cup in 2015 and missed the tail end of the 10-game Victory Tour with a nagging injury.
O'Hara's star has been on the rise since the summer. She did not see action during the group play or in the knockout round win over Colombia. But the Georgia native came on to have an impressive match against China when the Americans were forced to play without Megan Rapinoe and Lauren Holiday, who sat with an accumulation of yellow cards. O'Hara scored a goal in the 2-0 semifinal victory over Germany and saw 29 minutes of action in the 5-2 final win over Japan.
Rampone has been a mainstay on the U.S. backline for the last 15 years and has emerged as a top international defender as well as an invaluable leader. But time is not on her side. She suffered a leg injury a year ago and watched Julie Johnston take her place on the backline for the Americans. The New Jersey native had said she would try playing in her fifth Olympics if she was healthy.
U.S. Women's National Team coach Jill Ellis has named 26 players for the first training camp of 2016, which will lead into the first match of the year against the Republic of Ireland on January 23 at Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego (2 p.m. PT, FS1).
The U.S. team will begin training at the U.S. Soccer National Training Center in Carson, California, on Jan. 5 and train through Jan. 21 when the squad will head south to prepare for its final game before the 2016 CONCACAF Women's Olympic Qualifying Championship begins on Feb. 10 in Texas.
Twenty-four of the 26 players were with the USA during the final stretch of the Women's World Cup Victory Tour in December, with Ellis adding Portland Thorns goalkeeper Adrianna Franch and 17-year-old forward Mallory Pugh, who recently captained the U.S. Under-20 Women's National Team to a 2016 FIFA U-20 Women's World Cup berth and the CONCACAF title at the qualifying tournament in Honduras.
Ellis will name 18 players to suit up against Ireland and will name the roster for Olympic Qualifying following that match.
Although the National Women's Soccer League (NWSL) has not made a formal announcement, it is believed that the league will go on a hiatus, similar to the one last summer for the World Cup.