Which is obviously my fault.

The U.S. has depth at the wide attacker position of course, with Sophia Smith or Trinity Rodman or Midge Purce, or Lynn Williams being able to take the spot. But none of them have had the devastating lethalness that Swanson has had for club and country the past year. The depth they had allowed for the US to play with sliding Smith or Swanson into the middle at times when Alex Morgan needed a rest, because there isn’t a lot of depth behind Morgan as a No. 9 (Catarina Macario’s status is dicey). That’s probably gone now.


The U.S. still has too many issues in midfield (they seem to be heavily counting on Julie Ertz to solve most of the problems, even though she hadn’t played a game in two years before Saturday) to be a sure thing this summer. Making up for a lot of that was having a player like Swanson who could conjure something out of nothing and had the type of skills that a lot of opponents simply couldn’t deal with. Smith has that potential, though has shown it less with the national team than Swanson (Smith is only 22).

It’s a major blow, though the U.S. is hardly alone. Both England (Beth Mead) and the Dutch (Vivianne Miedema) will be without top stars as well. That’s how it goes in international soccer. It’s heartbreaking for Swanson, who didn’t make the last Olympic squad and didn’t play a huge role in 2019. A big World Cup could have put her in the discussion for the Ballon d’Or or FIFA Player of The Year. The tournament will go on without her, and the USWNT is down a major weapon.