Diana Matheson re-tears ACL, will miss NWSL season

Dan Lauletta February 28, 2017 17
Diana Matheson will miss the 2017 NWSL season after suffering her second torn ACL in less than three years. (Photo Copyright Harjeet Johal for The Equalizer)

Diana Matheson will miss the 2017 NWSL season after suffering her second torn ACL in less than three years. (Photo Copyright Harjeet Johal for The Equalizer)

Diana Matheson has a re-torn the ACL in her left knee, the Seattle Reign announced on Tuesday. The recently acquired midfielder will miss the entire 2017 NWSL season. Matheson previously tore the same ACL in 2014 and hustled back to be a minor contributor at the back end of the 2015 World Cup in Canada. The latest injury occurred training with Canada earlier in February. Canada coach John Herdman did not include Matheson on his Algarve Cup roster, presumably due to the injury.

“I’m so disappointed for Diana – when she told me my heart sank for her,” Reign head coach and general manager Laura Harvey said.

Matheson spent the four previous seasons with the Washington Spirit and is that club’s all-time leader in goals scored and co-leader (with Crystal Dunn) in assists. When the Spirit began revampingt he roster, Matheson requested a trade to a more veteran team. On January 23 the Spirit dealt her to Seattle for rookie Arielle Shipp and a 2018 draft pick.

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The 34-year old Princeton graduate is one of the most popular players in Canada thanks to the combination of her diminutive size and high work rate. In 2012 she scored one of the most famous goals in Canadian soccer history, an extra time game-winner to secure an Olympic bronze medal. Matheson and Canada won a second bronze medal in 2016.

Despite the injury Matheson indicated she still has her eyes on the next World Cup/Olympic cycle.

“It’s obviously disappointing to be off the field for both Canada and Seattle for this upcoming season, but this will hopefully give me the best chance to be back to where I want to be for both club and country looking ahead to next season, and onward towards 2019 and 2020,” she said.

Harvey said the Reign, who missed the playoffs in 2016 after two straight Shield seasons, are deep enough to withstand the loss of one of their newest acquisitions.

“(Matheson) will be missed this season, but we have built a roster that has huge depth, so the group coming into preseason will be pushing to show who can step up.”

  • wosofan

    That really sucks, hope she can comeback strong and finish her career off in proper fashion.

  • dw

    I wish her the best, but you have to suspect that this could be a career ender…

    • AlexH

      Well at least she has a Princeton degree to fall back on. Maybe she should do grad school while he rehabs.

    • Timber Dave

      Especially since she’s 34, and even more that it’s a re-tear of her ACL. Wow I feel bad for her.

      • Gary Diver

        I believe she is nearly 33 years old. But add one year recovery time and she will be 34 which puts her future in serious jeopardy. She has to be a smart cookie if she went to Princeton. Maybe she should shift focus since she has stated she would like to be a GM for a women’s professional team. Vancouver may be a good fit for her.

  • guest


  • Ashley C

    Awful news. Big loss for the league too because I always enjoy watching her after all these years. Very few athletes really ever recover from an ACL tear. Always a lingering issue or happens again, sadly. Speaking of which, I’m glad to see Erin McLeod back training.

  • Timber Dave

    In that picture, Matheson’s smile looks like Wallace’s, from Wallace and Gromit.

  • Silver Frost

    This article reminds me that DC is once again a basement dweller. All it took was one owner with a personality problem.

    • mockmook

      Funny, Lohman says he is a fine man. Are you calling her a liar?

      • Dennis Nguyen

        So, if one player thinks he’s a “fine man”, then everybody who doesn’t is wrong and is calling Lohman a liar?

        • mockmook


          • Guest123

            Wow, what a mature and well reasoned response.

          • mockmook

            Thank you.

  • mockmook

    If I didn’t have a lot of respect for Matheson and her game, I’d probably post the following image that I use to “celebrate” any misfortune that befalls the Reign:


    But, again, since it’s Matheson, I won’t do it this time.

  • Rdalford

    Sad news and very unfortunate (re-)injury of ACL for Matheson. Fun player to watch play. Both Seattle and Canada will miss her skills and positive leadership.
    Wish her a full and successful recovery.

  • FlyingSquirrel42

    Is it too early to declare this now to be the best trade the Spirit have made in this offseason, given the “competition”?