The U.S. women’s national team is entering what figures to be a period of youthful transition as Emma Hayes kicks off a new era as manager. Seven of the players called upon for this December’s training camp have five caps or fewer to their name – for a select group, this camp is their first. Korbin Albert, a former two-year college star who signed with Paris Saint-Germain last winter, is one of those players.
If you’re a women’s soccer fan in the United States, Albert’s name may have flashed past your eyes at some point towards the end of 2022. While ECNL aficionados and college soccer sickos were already plenty aware of Albert, that year’s ACC tournament semifinal was her national emergence.
Facing the defending national champions Florida State, Albert more or less willed her Notre Dame squad to an eventually ill-fated penalty kick shootout. The Seminoles scored less than 15 minutes into the contest. Albert answered back minutes later with a blast from range. Florida State went up again. Albert responded in the second half with two more long-shot goals in just thirty seconds.
It was the sort of one-woman-army performance that you don’t see very often at any level.
The Irish’s ACC tournament run ended later that night with the shootout defeat, but Albert didn’t slow down in the NCAA tournament. Including the Florida State match, she tallied six goals and an assist in her final five games of the 2022 season. It became abundantly clear that she wouldn’t be staying in South Bend much longer.
By the end of January, 2023, she had inked a three-year deal in France by signing with PSG. Since then, she’s gone about establishing herself as a key member of PSG’s squad, earning starts against Ajax and Bayern Munich in the Champions League this fall.
And now, at 20 years old, she is primed to make her first USWNT appearance. So, what does Albert bring to the table?