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    Photo courtesy Liverpool Ladies FC Facebook Page
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    When the United States Women’s National Soccer Team heads to France in four years to defend its World Cup title, don’t be surprised if the city of Louisville has a particular rooting interest.

    That’s because there’s a chance that Louisville native Libby Stout could become a member of the USWNT. Stout, the 25-year-old Manual High School graduate, just might be the team’s goalkeeper of the future.

    The former Western Kentucky University standout (2008-11), who holds the program records for keeper wins (45), goals against average (0.68) and shutouts (39), is currently in her second season as a goalie for the Liverpool Ladies Football Club, a professional team in England’s top league, the Women’s Super League.

    In her first season, Stout helped the Ladies win their second straight WSL title. So far this season Stout, the only American in the league, has started in goal every match for Liverpool (2-3-0). She has allowed only six goals in five matches, but her team has only scored five goals. Liverpool’s next match is Sunday.

    Over the next few years, though, Stout could find herself in contention to replaceme USWNT keeper Hope Solo, who won the Golden Glove (the award given to the outstanding goalie) in helping the U.S. win its first World Cup since 1999, if and when she hangs up her cleats. Solo, who turns 34 at the end of this month, reportedly hasn’t ruled out a return in 2019, but given her checkered past (she was suspended from the team earlier this year) nothing is certain.

    If Solo isn’t back, Stout could be the next woman up. Although she hasn’t gotten the USWNT call-up yet, Stout, who played on the United States’ U-23 international team a couple years ago, could be on the cusp. Earlier this year, when Solo was serving a 30-day suspension (she was in the passenger seat when her husband was arrested for suspicion of driving a U.S. team van under the influence), Alyssa Naeher was in goal for friendlies against France and England.

    “I’m always hopeful that it is going to happen at some point, but I just think this time they have older back-up keepers who have been there for a bit,” Stout, who played professionally in France and Germany before signing with Liverpool in January of 2014, told Sky Sports earlier this year.

    Naeher, 27, Ashlyn Harris, 29, were Solo’s back-ups in Canada.

    And it’s obvious that Stout, who grew up idolizing Briana Scurry (the keeper on the U.S.’s ‘99 World Cup championship) watched this World Cup with a great deal of interest.

    “Such a proud American! Congrats to @ussoccer_wnt! Well deserved champions of the world. Inspiring a new generation #1N1T #USA,” Stout tweeted Sunday.

    Stout could very well be a part of the U.S.’s next generation four years from now in France.

    Photo courtesy Liverpool Ladies FC Facebook Page

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