Brandi Chastain talks about the USWNT ahead of the World Cup, and Capital One Cup standings

Brandi Chastain took the time out of a busy schedule that includes work as a member of the Capital One Cup Advisory Board, a player for the California Storm of the Women’s Premier Soccer League, and raising her young son to talk a little bit about the USA and the World Cup, and the Capital One Cup standings.

Pia Sundhage recently announced the USA’s World Cup Roster. The World Cup will be in Germany and will run from June 26 to July 17. Group A: Germany, Canada, Nigeria, France. Group B: Japan, New Zealand, Mexico, England. Group C: USA, N. Korea, Sweden, Colombia. Group D: Brazil, Australia, Norway, Equatorial Guinea.

The USA is currently together for two matches against Japan, one which they already won over the weekend, 2-0. The next match is on Wednesday night at WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary, NC at 7:00 p.m. ET. The match will air live on ESPN2 and on ESPN3.com.

The first year of the Capital One Cup is coming to an end as spring sports are finishing up competition and schools are earning their last points. The Capital One Cup will be awarded to one men’s program and one women’s program at the ESPY Awards in July.

Below is the short interview with the two-time Olympic Gold Medalist, and 2-time World Cup Champion.

AH: On the USA World Cup roster, which players stand out? Who will be key to the team’s success?

BC: Abby Wambach. She needs to make an impact and score some goals right away. She seems to be the player that impacts other teams the most.

AH:Which teams are the biggest threat to the USA?

BC: I think Germany and Brazil  are the front runners. I also think the first group game against Korea DPR will set the tone for the rest of the championship.

AH: Which Group is the toughest?

BC: Germany, being the host country, didn’t get an easy group as people would have hoped. I think that group C is a tough group as well. I think that group B is challenging because there is so much uncertainty amongst the teams.

AH: A few teams have been losing key players to injury just before the World Cup. The USA just lost Lindsay Tarpley with a torn ACL during Saturday’s game against Japan. How does her loss impact team USA?

BC: Losing a player like Lindsay is emotionally difficult more than anything else. But as Lindsay has said the team and players have been training hard, so anyone on the team is capable of stepping into her role. The team shouldn’t miss a beat. Overall, I think her personality and experience will be missed.

AH: Speaking of Japan, the USA won against them, but people still aren’t convinced that they are playing at their best. What do they have to do to be a contender in the World Cup?

BC: Winning isn’t enough for the US. People always expect or want more from them. The funny thing is that it shouldn’t matter to the players what other people are saying. They need to manage the world cup and get into the semifinals. Each game matters. Once they get through the group stages they can focus on the play of how it should look because that will enhance the results. They should be results driven right now. Which is hard for me to stay, but it’s really what a world tournament cup is like.

AH: How are the Capital One Cup standings shaping up?

BC: Stanford is leading for women and Auburn is leading for men. The good thing about the Capital One Cup is that it includes women is 13 sports that span across the fall, winter and spring helping earn points for their school. Each of the 13 sports makes a difference. The spring championships haven’t occurred yet meaning the race for the Cup is still underway. The standings are subject to change based on how the spring sports pan out. Fans can learn more about the Capital One Cup and view the standings by visiting CapitalOneCup.com, Facebook.com/CapitalOneCup and Twitter.com/CapitalOneCup.

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