As the United States looks to avenge their second place at the 2011 edition of the FIFA Women’s World Cup, a budding superstar shall be looking to realize such ambitions. Having earned her first cap with the United States in 2013, Christen Press shall be making her World Cup debut this year.
Of note, the year 2015 has served as a coming-out party for Press, placing her name in the American soccer conversation. Recently, Press has been featured in a television advertising campaign for Coppertone, increasing awareness of the upcoming 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup. Having also been involved with several advertisements and promotional spots for Nike, Press is emerging as an endorsement darling.
Quite possibly the most enjoyable moment in her road towards the World Cup occurred in May 2015. Press was featured on The Simpsons television program, along with teammates Alex Morgan and Abby Wambach. In addition, Press has graced the pages of several popular magazines, including the likes of Self, Howler, and Glamour (which also included several of her US soccer teammates).
Having quietly assembled a solid soccer career, the 26 year-old currently plays for the Chicago Red Stars of the National Women’s Soccer League. During her first season with the club in 2014, she established herself as a franchise player. Having led the team with 6 goals, despite only appearing in 12 games, she was rewarded with the Red Stars Golden Boot.
Her finest performance of the season came on a Fourth of July 4 match against the defending champion Portland Thorns. Scoring twice in six minutes, Press’ efforts forced a draw, after being down 2-0 at halftime. In the aftermath of the season, she was recognized as a member of the league’s Second team All-Stars.
Prior to her NWSL heroics, Press gained her first taste of soccer glory when she was bestowed the 2010 Hermann Trophy, recognizing the best female player in NCAA soccer. Having graduated from prestigious Stanford University as the all-time leading scorer, she would earn 2011 Rookie of the Year honors in Women’s Professional Soccer.
Joining the Swedish Damallsvenskan, Press would add other remarkable accomplishments in her promising career. Logging time with both Kopparbergs/Göteborg FC and Tyresö FF, she was the top scorer in the 2013 Damallsvenskan season with 23 goals. Her legacy in the league was secured as she became the first American to claim the league’s Golden Boot award
In the last decade, Press has emerged as one of the finest players developed within the US program. From her roots with the youth national teams, including the under-20 and under-23 teams, she has emerged as a future star on the senior team. Although she attended the 2012 Summer Olympics in London as an alternate for the gold-medal winning US team, her first cap with the team would come on February 9, 2013.
Competing in a friendly against Scotland, Press (who was lined up as a right midfielder) would make an impression as she scored the first two goals of the match, and her career. With a superlative performance complemented by an assist, she was recognized as the Player of the Game. Her second cap also came against Scotland, resulting in her third career goal for a 2-0 victory.
With this accomplishment, Press became the third American woman to score two goals in her US national team debut. The first player to accomplish the feat was Cindy Parlow Cone in 1996, followed by Sherrill Kester in 2000. Press would continue to build on the momentum as she became the first (and only) US woman to record three goals in her first two games. As 2013 progressed, she would score four goals in her first four career matches, becoming the fifth US player to lay claim to such an achievement.
Should Press manage to provide such scoring heroics in a championship effort at the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup, it will elevate her into the same stratosphere as the likes of Mia Hamm, Brandi Chastain and Abby Wambach. Taking into account that the US are among the favored countries to win the hotly contested event, it may prove to be the most competitive yet.