The U.S. women’s national soccer team called up former BYU Cougar Ashley Hatch for the team’s September matches on Tuesday.

This will be Hatch’s first time back with the team since she was snubbed from the World Cup roster. Hatch is among three forwards called up to the team who didn’t make the World Cup roster.

The U.S. will be playing South Africa on Sept. 21 and Sept. 24 in Cincinnati and Chicago. This roster is a good sign that Hatch could be with the team when it plays Colombia in Utah in October.

Why was Ashley Hatch left off World Cup roster?

Hatch was one of the biggest names left off the World Cup roster. She spoke publicly about the snub for the first time on Just Women’s Sports’ “Snacks” podcast last week.

She said she wasn’t given a “specific reason of why” she didn’t make the team or a specific area to improve on.

“Obviously in my position, you need to score goals. That’s what I’m going to continue to try and be better at.”

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Whatever she’s been doing to get better has worked. She is currently tied for second in the NWSL’s Golden Boot race with nine goals this season. In her first game after the World Cup roster was released, she let the world know she’s a goal scorer, finishing the game with two goals.

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“It is hard when you feel like you did everything you were asked to do and then you still don’t make it,” she said. “So I feel like I’m still going through the process of (that) becoming a motivator. Right now, in the spot that I’m at right now, it still hurts a lot.”

When will the new USWNT coach be hired?

On Tuesday, Matt Crocker, the U.S. Soccer sporting director, said the federation is planning to hire the team’s next head coach by December, Just Women’s Sports reported. Coach Vlatko Andonovski resigned in August following the U.S.’s earliest World Cup exit, and his assistant Twila Kilgore will serve as interim head coach through the October matches.

“As we continue the search for our new head coach, we felt it was best to call up all of World Cup players who are fit to play, while also bringing in some players that we believe can help us moving forward as we start our preparations for the Olympics next year,” Crocker said, per U.S. Soccer’s website. “Once the new head coach comes in, that individual will assess the player pool and make roster decisions that will be focused on building a team for the future.”

The new coach will have limited time with the team’s player pool before assembling an Olympic roster next summer. Even without the new coach, the upcoming matches will serve as an opportunity for players to showcase how their club success can translate to the national team as they make their case to be one of the 22 players to go to Paris.

San Diego Wave defender Kaleigh Riehl, left, competes with Washington Spirit forward Ashley Hatch, right, during an NWSL soccer match on Saturday, May 6, 2023, in Washington. | Nathan Howard, Associated Press
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