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ASIAN AMERICAN & PACIFIC ISLANDER HERITAGE MONTH SPOTLIGHT: JAEDYN SHAW

May 10, 2024, | Courtesy of www.ussoccer.com



Growing up a stone’s throw from the National Soccer Hall of Fame in Frisco, Texas, U.S. Women’s National Team attacker Jaedyn Shaw dreamt of one day wearing the same crest as her heroes. When she took the short walk to the stadium to watch FC Dallas matches, she never could have predicted the path she would take in the sport and the record – and barrier – she would break on her journey to the USWNT.



The now 19-year-old Shaw started playing soccer at the age of four but took to the sport in a somewhat unique fashion, falling in love with the ball not on a grass field but on the futsal court. Shaw honed her skills and vision playing futsal before slowly shifting her focus to 11-v-11 around the age of 12, and she would go on to represent both the Solar Soccer Club and FC Dallas.


She continued to take the path less traveled when in July of 2022, Shaw decided to forgo collegiate soccer and signed a professional contract with San Diego Wave FC of the National Women’s Soccer League. Later that month she made her professional debut at the age of 17 and scored in that match. Shaw went on the represent the U.S. at the FIFA Under-20 Women’s World Cup later that summer and was named the Chipotle U.S. Soccer Young Female Player of the Year for 2022.


A dynamic and versatile attacker with great vision, Shaw received her first call-up to the U.S. Women's National Team in September of 2023 and made her USWNT debut the following month at the age of 18, earning her first cap on October 26 and then scoring in her second cap on October 29 in San Diego. In a bit of a full circle moment, Shaw made her first start in her hometown of Frisco and scored the game-winning goal in the USA’s year-end victory over China PR on December 5, 2023. Since then, she made history in becoming the first player in USWNT history to score in each of her first five starts and was awarded the Golden Ball as the best player at the 2024 Concacaf W Gold Cup.


Beyond her statistical achievements, Shaw has also made history as the first Vietnamese American to represent the USWNT. As U.S. Soccer celebrates Asian American and Pacific Islander Month, Shaw’s background, which blends the Vietnamese heritage of her mother and African-American lineage from her father, adds depth to her infectious personality and – coupled with her dynamic skill – has quickly made her a fan favorite for club and country.


"Being the first Vietnamese American on the U.S. Women’s national team is a complete honor,” Shaw said. “I think being able to represent this jersey at all is an honor, but being able to represent more than that is a really cool opportunity for me to inspire little girls that may have similar heritage as me. It’s very motivating for me to work as hard as I can to be successful.”

While Shaw’s journey on the world stage is just beginning, she has already established herself as a trailblazer and a representative of the dynamic, diverse and inclusive wave of young talent developing across the U.S. Soccer ecosystem.


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