The United States come into the World Cup in great form after winning the World Grand Prix. At the Pan American Games another USA team won gold after sweeping Brazil. It has been a successful 12 months for coach Karch Kiraly who also led his side to gold at the 2014 World Championship. They won medals at the previous three World Cups, but not gold. After several appearances without success, including six campaigns between 1973 and 1999, they won consecutive bronze medals in 2003 and 2007, and in 2011 they went one better and won silver.
At the 2014 World Grand Prix they finished fifth in the Intercontinental Round, having won the competition three times between 2010 and 2012. In 2013 the US were sixth, but won silver at the Grand Champions Cup. Since finishing runners-up at the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games, they have never been out of the top two places in the FIVB world rankings. They displaced Brazil at No.1 after their silver medal at the 2011 World Cup. Brazil regained top spot in September 2013 after they ended USA’s three-season reign as World Grand Prix champions. But USA took the gold medal at the NORCECA Continental Championships in September 2013 and returned to the top of the rankings after winning World Championship gold in Italy last year.