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AD Franch’s stellar NWSL form helped her snag USWNT roster spot

(Brad Smith/ISI Photos/Getty Images)

For the first time in more than a year, AD Franch is back among the USWNT goalkeeper ranks.

Franch last played for the U.S. women’s national team in October 2021, but she was announced Monday as part of the roster for the team’s upcoming November friendlies against Germany.

The Kansas City Current goalkeeper’s performance during the NWSL regular season and playoffs contributed to her call-up, USWNT coach Vlatko Andonovski said. Franch helped lead the Current to an NWSL championship appearance, though Kansas City fell 2-0 to the Portland Thorns in Saturday’s final.

“Especially the second part of the season, it was almost like it was her role to carry Kansas City in tough times,” Andonovski said. “It was almost her role to get them through to what they were actually able to achieve.”

Noting that it “wasn’t hard” to call Franch up after her stellar season, the coach said her consistency played a key role in the decision to reward her another call-up.

Franch finished second in Goalkeeper of the Year voting this season after recording five clean sheets, averaging 3.4 saves per 90 minutes and helping the Kansas City Current to a 10-6-5 record.

The Current finished fifth in the rankings after ending the 2021 season in last place. In the postseason, they bested the No. 4 Houston Dash and then the No. 1 OL Reign before falling in the title game.

“I think that she showed once again the quality she has and she showed that this was not just one or two games, it was consistent throughout the season,” he said. “And I think this is another opportunity for me to say: Yes, the form in the league matters. And if you’re doing well, on a consistent basis, you will be called back regardless of what your status was in the past.

“We saw this with Franch, now we saw it with Alex [Morgan], Mal [Pugh], with other players. So it’s same for everyone.”

Franch last played for the USWNT in a friendly South Korea, a match in which she posted a clean sheet. She’s got 10 total caps, including two appearances during the Tokyo Olympics last summer, and she also served as a backup during the 2019 World Cup.