Potential top pick Brooks headed to Germany

Jeff Kassouf January 9, 2013 3

North Carolina celebrates its 21st NCAA championship. (Photo copyright Debby von Winckelmann for EqualizerSoccer.com)

Amber Brooks, a two-time NCAA national champion with the North Carolina Tar Heels, is headed to Germany to play in the Frauen Bundesliga, she tweeted on Tuesday.

Brooks was projected to be one of the top picks in the 2013 National Women’s Soccer League Draft, set to take place on Jan. 18. She ended her career this past fall with a senior season that saw her score seven goals and chipped in six assists for the title-winning Tar Heels. The U.S. U-23 national team pool player started all 23 games for the Tar Heels.

Which team she is playing for remains unknown. She followed up the tweet announcing her departure (below) with one that said the announcement should officially be made in the next couple of days.

Brooks’ follow-up tweet about being back in the U.S. in June likely has more to do with when the European offseason occurs than the length of her contract, but it presents an interesting situation for NWSL teams.

Will a team draft her to hold her rights and hope to lure her back at a later point?

The Philadelphia Independence and Sky Blue FC did that in last year’s WPS Draft (which ultimately meant nothing, since the league folded). Sky Blue drafted Ingrid Wells, who plays for Göteborg FC in Sweden and Philadelphia drafted Sarah Hagen, who is tearing up the Frauen Bundesliga with Bayern Munich. The idea was to hold the players’ rights and convince them to come home (or that homesickness would do the convincing).

Brooks is likely worth that risk, but things are different this time around. Teams had the luxury of gambling on a pick in 2011 since squads were already mostly in place. As of today — Wednesday, Jan. 9, 2013 — not a single NWSL player officially (and publicly) has a single player on the roster. So, gamble on Brooks in the first round? Third round? We’ll see.

In other news, young U.S. forward Christen Press is now a member of Tyresö , leaving her other Swedish club, Göteborg FC.

Tyreso is also home to stars Marta, Caroline Seger and Vero Boquette.

  • Kernel Thai

    It’s been suggested on BigSoccer.com players will be required to make themselves available for the draft. If they dont they could qualify as a free agent at the end of Spring season. Now there is no telling how long a contract Brooks signed. I would expect it was a year, protecting both sides if things dont work out. If it was only for Spring, it looks like she could make her own deal with the team of her choice in June.

    • randomhookup

      If she doesn’t apply for the draft, the NWSL may require a supplemental draft for anyone returning to the US out less than 1 year and recently under contract. We’ll see.

      • Steglitz49

        Till we know which team has acquired her (and preferably what they pay) we cannot make a valid judgement. The obvious candidates are Potsdam and Frankfurt, but it could be Duisburg and though Wolfsburg have not been buying foreign lately they are in the QF of the CL, and Bayern and Hamburg have deep pockets and there are two teams in D2 with deep pockets — very deep pockets.