Monday Roundup: NWSL teams go to camp, announce rosters

The Equalizer Staff March 13, 2017 133
The Pride opened preseason Monday and announced a slate of five preseason matches (photo: Orlando Pride)

The Pride opened preseason Monday and announced a slate of five preseason matches (photo: Orlando Pride)

Monday marked the opening of preseason for all 10 NWSL clubs all of whom announced their preseason rosters. Only two teams–Sky Blue FC and the Washington Spirit–have 32 women in camp, which is the maximum allowed by league rules. There are two cut-down days ahead of opening weekend. Camp rosters must be down to 25 players by March 28 and 18-20 on April 10. The league’s fifth season opens Saturday, April 15.

Pride announce roster, preseason schedule

The Pride announced their preseason roster plus a slate of five preseason matches to prepare for the club’s second season. Tom Sermanni’s side will play its first match of 2017 on March 18 against Stetson. After that is a previously-announced match against the University of South Florida. A midweek match follows on March 29 against the University of Florida. The final two matches are against Florida State (April 1) and the U-23 national team (April 7). The U-23 tilt is during a FIFA window meaning Ashlyn Harris and Ali Krieger are unlikely to be with the Pride.

The spacing of matches should provide the Pride with a smooth transition into their season opener on April 15 in Portland.

All five matches will be played behind closed doors.

The Pride also announced a preseason roster of 30 players, two short of the maximum allowed. The list includes players who have yet to or are not planning to report to camp which leaves the Pride further below the league-mandated limit.

Goalkeepers (4): Aubrey Bledsoe, Ashlyn Harris1, Amanda Kopale3, Hannah Seabert3
Defenders (10): Laura Alleway, McKenzie Berryhill, Steph Catley4, Monica Hickmann Alves, Alanna Kennedy4, Ali Krieger1, Cami Levin, Camila Martins Pereira, Toni Pressley, Lorina White3
Midfielders (5): Jocelyn Blankenship3, Nickolette Driesse2, Kristen Edmonds, Maddy Evans, Dani Weatherholt
Forwards (11): Christina Burkenroad, Danica Evans2, Jamia Fields, Sarah Hagen, Rachel Hill3/4, Alex Morgan1/4, Kim Reynolds3, Carol Rodrigues3/4, Jasmyne Spencer, Tabitha Tindell3, Chioma Ubogagu

1 – Federation player
2 – 2017 NWSL College Draft Pick
3 – Trialist
4 – Not in camp

Reign start midfield rebuild

Laura Harvey has nine midfielders in camp as she goes about the task of retooling things in the center of the park following the retirement of Keelin Winters and the departure of Kim Little. The 10th midfielder, Diana Matheson, has a torn ACL and will miss the entire season.

Goalkeepers (4): Haley Kopmeyer, Madalyn Schiffel, Brianna Smallridge (NRI), Hanna deHaan (NRI)
Defenders (10): Elli Reed, Merritt Mathias, Lauren Barnes, Rachel Corsie, Carson Pickett, Anjel Brown (NRI), Maddie Bauer (Draft Pick), Kristen McNabb (Draft Pick), Rumi Utsugi, Rebekah Stott (NYR)
Midfielders (10): Veronica Perez (NRI), Christine Nairn, Jordan Jesolva (NRI), Haley Rosen (NRI), Annie Alvarado (NRI), Mimi Rangel (NRI), Lindsay Elston, Paige Nielsen (NRI), Jessica Fishlock (NYR), Diana Matheson (NYR)
Forwards (8): Beverly Yanez, Kiersten Dallstream, Megan Rapinoe, Nahomi Kawasumi, Katie Johnson (Draft Pick), Addison Steiner (NRI), Sydney Arnold (NRI), Larissa Crummer (NYR)

Non-Roster Invitee (NRI)
Not Yet Reported to Camp (NYR)

Full Sky Blue roster doesn’t include Grubka

Christy Holly will go to camp with a full compliment of 32 players, but Kristin Grubka is not among the 32. The Equalizer reported last month that Grubka could be traded. No deal has taken place yet, but the defender’s time at Sky Blue appears to be over after two seasons, mostly as a center back.

“We are very optimistic as we head into our first week of the preseason,” Holly, Sky Blue FC head coach, said. “We have a great array of new talent coming into camp. With so many skillful players taking part in the preseason, it creates a very competitive environment that will challenge everybody to be at their best.”

Goalkeepers (4): Caroline Casey (William and Mary), Tori Corsaro (Le Moyne), Kristyn Shea (Providence), Kailen Sheridan (Clemson, FP-CAN)
Defenders (7): Cassidy Benintente (Rutgers), Kayla Mills (Southern California), Mandy Freeman (Southern California), Kelley O’Hara (Stanford, FP-USA), Erica Skroski (Rutgers), Christie Rampone (Monmouth), Erin Simon (Syracuse)
Midfielders (9): Catrina Atanda (Clemson), Jackie Bruno (Massachusetts), Kelly Conheeney (Virginia Tech), Daphne Corboz (Georgetown), Sarah Killion (UCLA), Taylor Lytle (Texas Tech), Domi Richardson (Missouri), Raquel Rodriguez (Penn State, INT’L-CRC), Nikki Stanton (Fairfield)
Forwards (12): Rachel Breton (Rutgers), Kim DeCesare (Duke), Leah Galton (Hofstra, INT’L-ENG), Maya Hayes (Penn State), Tasha Kai (Hawaii), Sam Kerr (INT’L-AUS), Alexis McTamney (Monmouth), McKenzie Meehan (Boston College), Erica Murphy (Rutgers), Danielle Schulmann (Connecticut), Madison Tiernan (Rutgers), Catherine Zimmerman (Providence)

FP – Federation Player

Six players on the roster were invited after taking part of the club’s open tryout process. The team released the following video to give fans an inside look at how the tryout process works.

Full roster for Spirit

An offseason of turnover will begin to crystallize into a new squad in Washington, but Jim Gabarra will open camp with a full roster. Absent from the list are Cali Faruharson and Kelsey Wys, both of whom tore their ACLs in the last six months. Caprice Dydasco, who suffered the same injury during the NWSL Championship, is on the official 32-woman camp roster.

Stephanie Labbe is listed as having yet to report, which is in line with other Canadians who were part of the Algarve Cup team. Labbe was in the news over the winter for some bad feelings between her and the club after she did not play again after returning from the Olympics last summer. Reports of a truce were thrown into question when, in the lead-up to Canada’s friendly against Mexico last month, she refused to answer any questions about NWSL. She is a subsidized player by the Canadian Soccer Association for this season.

Goalkeepers (4): Stephanie Labbé (NYR), DiDi Haracic, Lindsey Harris*, Kori Butterfield*
Defenders (8): Whitney Church, Estelle Johnson, Shelina Zadorsky (NYR), Kassey Kallman, Alyssa Kleiner, Caprice Dydasco, Tessa Gavilsky*, Molly Menchel*
Midfielders (11): Line Sigvardsen Jensen, Kristie Mewis, Joanna Lohman, Tori Huster, Havana Solaun, Meggie Dougherty Howard (draft pick), Cameron Castleberry* (draft pick), Lauren Lazo*, Sharon Wojcik*, Fran Garzelloni*, Marion Crowder*
Forwards (9): Cheyna Williams, Francisca Ordega, Katie Stengel, Lindsay Agnew (draft pick), Arielle Ship* (draft pick), Ninfa Ramirez*, Clare Pleuler*, Crystal Thomas*, Gloria Douglas*

* – trialist

No surprises in Chicago

The Red Stars announced 31 players for the club’s 5th preseason, and there were no surprises. The Red Stars got their curveball a few weeks ago when rookie Michelle Vasconselos announced that she is pregnant and will sit out 2017. Rory Dames is not averse to waiting on players though. Summer Green and Ashleigh Ellenwood, both 2016 draftees who were carrying injuries, are in camp and ready to compete for a place on the jam-packed Red Stars roster.

Goalkeepers (2): Michele Dalton, Alyssa Naeher
Defenders (7): Arin Gilliland, Sarah Gorden, Samantha Johnson, Julie Johnston, Katie Naughton, Emily Richardson, Casey Short
Midfielders (13): Jackie Altschuld, Danielle Colaprico, Taylor Comeau, Vanessa DiBernardo, Ashley Gogolin, Lauren Kaskie, Kourtney Kutscher, Morgan Proffitt, Courtney Raetzman, Sofia Huerta, Alyssa Mautz, Mary Luba, Brittany Ratcliffe
Forwards (8): Ashleigh Ellenwood, Janelle Flaws, Summer Green, Jennifer Hoy, Simone Kolander, Stephanie McCaffrey, Christen Press, Cara Walls

Dash bring all three keepers

The Dash have invited 24 players into preseason and have also named Carli Lloyd, who will not join the club until her stint at Manchester City ends. The position under the microscope will be goalkeeper. The Dash used Lydia Williams as their primary keeper in 2016 with Bianca Henninger as a capable backup. But the team surprised many on draft day by taking Jane Campbell in the 2nd round. Campbell is clearly in the mix with the national team and was on the SheBelieves Cup roster although she did not play. Dash coach Randy Waldrum has hinted he could carry all three keepers into the regular season but with roster limits at 20, it makes little sense to go with a third contracted keeper.

Goalkeepers (3): Jane Campbell*, Bianca Henninger, Lydia Williams
Defenders (10): Bruna Benites, Megan Crosson**, Claire Falknor, Jaylyn Odermann**, Stephanie Ochs, Cami Privett, Poliana, Cari Roccaro, Erin Smith *, Janine Van Wyk
Midfielders (6): Andressa, Morgan Brian***, Amber Brooks, Anna Maria Gilbertson, Caity Heap, Carli Lloyd****, Denise O’Sullivan
Forwards (6): Janine Beckie***, Rachel Daly, Melissa Henderson, Amber Munnerlyn **, Kealia Ohai, Nichelle Prince ***

*2017 NWSL College Draft pick
**Non-roster invitee
*** Federation player
****Not in preseason camp

Thorns keeping things tight

The Thorns made few changes to their roster a year after winning the NWSL Shield. To that end, Mark Parsons has 23 players in preseason to compete for 20 roster spots.

FOX Sports’ Caitlin Murray reported from training on Monday that Parsons plans to use Allie Long in the midfield despite Jill Ellis’s recent experiment using her as the center most back in the national team’s 3-5-2. That likely leaves the Emilys—Menges and Sonnett—to return as the Thorns’ center back pairing.

Goalkeepers (3): Emily Armstrong*, Britt Eckerstrom, Adrianna Franch
Defenders (9): Ellie Boon*, Meghan Cox*, Caroline Flynn#, Kelli Hubly*, Kendall Johnson, Meghan Klingenberg, Emily Menges, Katherine Reynolds, Emily Sonnett
Midfielders (7): Celeste Boureille, Dagny Brynjarsdottir, Amandine Henry, Lindsey Horan, Allie Long, Mana Shim, Mallory Weber
Forwards (6): Tobin Heath, Ashley Herndon*, Nadia Nadim, Christine Sinclair, Meg Morris, Hayley Raso

*Non-roster invitee
# 2017 NWSL College Draft pick

Courage ready to debut, defend

The North Carolina Courage will both debut and defend this season. This will be the first year on the field after being purchased from the Western New York Flash owners, but it will be a close facsimile of the team that won the 2016 NWSL Championship. Sixteen players in camp were part of last year’s championship side in Western New York.

Goalkeepers (3): Katelyn Rowland, Sabrina D’Angelo, Bryane Heaberlin
Defenders (10): Jaelene Hinkle, Courtney Niemiec, Meredith Speck, Taylor Smith, Abby Dahlkemper, Abby Erceg, Elizabeth Eddy, Claire Wagner, Yuri Kawamura (invitee), Tina Iordanou
Midfielders (9): Michaela Hahn, Sam Mewis, McCall Zerboni, Samantha Witteman, Rosana, Debinha, Carly Gould, Maria Lubrano-Lavadera, Megan Lindsay
Forwards (8): Makenzy Doniak, Lynn Williams, Jessica McDonald, Kristen Hamilton, Ashley Hatch, Darian Jenkins, Jaycie Johnson, Ashley Clark

New look Breakers ready to roll

The Breakers made major overhauls to their roster over the winter, and Matt Beard has already done a bunch of narrowing down with only 22 players in preseason. One of them is goalkeeper Libby Stout, who has a sprained ankle and is expected to miss a majority of the lead up to the April 16 season opener.

“As a coaching staff, there has been a lot of preparation going into this preseason. We are looking to hit the ground running so we can set ourselves up for a successful season,” Beard said. “There are many changes to this year’s roster, and we can’t wait to get started.”

Beard has four 1st round picks in camp. Rose Lavelle (1st), Morgan Andrews (3rd), Ifeoma Onumonu (8th) and Margaret Purce (9th) were all drafted by the Breakers in January.

Goalkeepers (3): Sammy Jo Prudhomme, Abby Smith, Libby Stout
Defenders (7): Allysha Chapman, Brooke Elby, Amanda Frisbie, Julie King, Megan Oyster, Kylie Strom, Christen Westphal
Midfielders (6): Morgan Andrews, Amanda Da Costa, Rose Lavelle, Angela Salem, Tiffany Weimer, Rosie White
Forwards (6): Hayley Dowd, Natasha Dowie, Emilie Haavi, Adriana Leon, Ifeoma Onumonu, Margaret Purce

Leroux returns for FC Kansas City

Sydney Leroux, who has not played since the 2015 World Cup, was at training with FC Kansas City on Monday, more than a year after the Blues acquired her from the Flash in a three-way trade. Leroux underwent ankle surgery after the World Cup and sat out 2016 to have a baby.

Amy Rodriguez, who also missed 2016 for maternity leave, is on the roster but not yet in camp.

“You know I’m glad we got the first day in under our belt. Obviously, the weather didn’t want to cooperate with us,” head coach Vlatko Andonovski said of a day when temperatures struggled to get out of the freezing zone. “We did what we had to do and had a pretty good first day. I’m happy with the girls, pretty excited about it and from now on we’re just going to build on what we started today.”

FC Kansas City are without two draft picks. Toni Payne elected to sign in the Netherlands, and Stephanie Ribeiro recently tore her ACL.

Goalkeepers (4): Nicole Barnhart, Kaela Little3, Cat Parkhill, Danielle Rice3
Defenders (10): Alex Arlitt, Yael Averbuch, Rashida Beal2, Katie Bowen, Rachel Leonard3, Becca Moros, Toriana Patterson3, Brianne Reed, Becky Sauerbrunn14, Brittany Taylor
Midfielders (10): Christina Gibbons2, Lo’eau LaBonta, Mandy Laddish, Sydney Miramontez3, Alexa Newfield, Desiree Scott14, Alexa Shaffer2, Josie Steiver3, Meghan Toohey3, Erika Tymrak
Forwards (4): Shea Groom, Jenna Hellstrom3, Sydney Leroux1, Amy Rodriguez14

1Federation player
22017 NWSL College Draft Pick
3Trialist
4Not in camp

  • Movement

    Yeah, totally. Allie Long is the most well rounded player out there.
    Jill should put her in the vintage Sydney Leroux role (speedy super-sub striker).
    This is what we all want in a forward. A player not that big, but at least they are slow.

  • Bruce

    “Matt Beard has already done a bunch of narrowing down with only 22 players in preseason”

    And 3 of them are GKs, so he’ll actually only be cutting one field player after the preseason.

    How a coach and GM with the *worst* track record for selecting talent in the league can eliminate competition for roster slots before camp even begins is beyond me.

    Breakers fans deserve better.

    • dw

      Keeps costs down. Ticket prices low.

      • Bruce

        How do you even scrimmage in a camp with only 19 field players?

        • dw

          That’s a silly question. Use the 3rd keeper of course.

          • Bruce

            Sure. Why not.

          • guest

            what 3rd keeper. one of the Breakers keepers (Stout) is in a boot (ankle injury) and out for a few weeks, another keeper (Smith) coming back from ACL.

          • dw

            Hmm… Your observations are not without merit. Perhaps I was joking.

    • Breakers fan

      Have to agree. He is showing a huge sign of confidence in all of these players. I hope that vote of confidence inspires them to new levels and serves to lead to this group really bonding together as a team.

  • tonysocref

    Thorns roster shows 25 in camp not 23, with one of there 2017 draft picks not listed (Tyler Lussi)
    When the Thorns announced the signing of Ashliegh Sykes, they indicated that she would be formally added to roster on Jun 10th.
    Not much room for the invites.

  • dw

    U$$F saving tons of cash due to players dropped, retired, or in Europe.

  • mockmook

    The invitee I see who has the best chance of being somebody: Stiever at FCKC

    • Bruce

      Miramontez. Also FCKC.

    • Breakers fan

      One of my favorites, Mimi Rangel, is listed here, with the Reign. Good call on Stiever, I think (I only saw her in 1 game). I also was impressed with the video I watched pre-draft of forward Tabby Tindell of FGCU – wishing her well. Others too – Kolander intrigues. I really liked the grit of Georgetown’s Crystal Thomas. I see that she is with the Spirit, not surprisingly. Also with the Spirit is another player I watched tape on pre-draft and who looked good to me – Fran Garzelloni of Univ of Denver. I looked for video but didn’t see any on a player who also is intriguing- Sydney Arnold, Marshall forward, who is with the Reign.

      I watched video on Megan Crosson who the Dash list as a defender but she played either forward or midfield I think for Santa Clara. I liked what I saw in the video of her Santa Clara play. Good to see that Pepperdine keeper Hannah Seabert caught on somewhere -the Pride – as she was very highly rated. I haven’t seen her in action, however.

      There could be others too. I did some research on almost all of the undrafted invitees and their resumes are impressive. I wouldn’t count out the possibility of some possible sleepers from among them.

    • Breakers fan

      One more – Ashley Clark – with the Courage, came to the Breakers tryout and I spoke at length with her father during the tryout. I then encouraged the Breakers to call her back after watching tape of her at Campbell Univ in NC where she set all-time school scoring records. My suggestion evidently fell on deaf ears but the Courage saw potential in her and have invited her into camp.

      • mockmook

        You are the invitee whisperer!!! 😉

        • Breakers fan

          Hahaha — I attempt to be, but often fail…..but that shall not deter me from future whispering! Do you think an increase in volume is called for?

  • Bruce

    Anyone know roster rules well enough to give a definitive answer?

    CRS has 19 players from last year’s roster under contract and/or an option. Vavel reports that this means that only one draftee/invitee will make the roster.

    That cannot be correct. I mean, players under contract can still be dropped, right?

    https://www.vavel.com/en-us/soccer/nwsl/765521-chicago-red-stars-announce-preseason-roster.html

    • another guest

      players can be waived at any time.
      relevant roster rule section reads
      “Teams may waive Players based on performance at any time prior to the Roster Freeze date during the NWSL Season”

      • Bruce

        Thank you. That was my understanding. Guess you can’t believe everything you read on the Internet.

  • Bruce

    Dydasco back in camp after tearing her ACL in last year’s final. Wow.
    https://twitter.com/CapriceDydasco/status/841411379772960768

    • DNG

      That seems really quick unless my math is wrong, that’s 6 months recovery.

      • Bruce

        Yep. I was so doubtful that I checked her other posts. Looks like she was back running/kicking in January. Impressive recovery.

  • htm222

    I can’t wait to watch Syd bulldoze again.

  • Rdalford

    The NWSL site (and NC Courage site) both list more players in NC Courage camp than the NC Courage roster posted above in the EQ article

    from NWSL site, NC Courage roster
    North Carolina Courage:

    Goalkeepers (3): Katelyn Rowland, Sabrina D’Angelo, Bryane Heaberlin

    Defenders (10): Jaelene Hinkle, Courtney Niemiec, Meredith Speck, Taylor Smith, Abby Dahlkemper, Abby Erceg, Elizabeth Eddy, Claire Wagner, Yuri Kawamura, Tina Iordanou

    Midfielders (9): Michaela Hahn, Sam Mewis, McCall Zerboni, Samantha Witteman, Rosana, Debinha, Carly Gould, Maria Lubrano-Lavadera, Megan Lindsay

    Forwards (8): Makenzy Doniak, Lynn Williams, Jessica McDonald, Kristen Hamilton, Ashley Hatch, Darian Jenkins, Jaycie Johnson, Ashley Clark

    • Rdalford

      EQ (thanks) has updated the NC Courage roster posted above in EQ article.

  • Silver Frost

    Too early to make predictions?

    Dominant teams: KC, Thorns, CRS, Reign

    Playoff potential: Orlando, Courage

    Not a chance: Boston, DC, Dash, Sky Blue

    • Bruce

      I’ll bite:

      Top 4: Thorns, Courage, CRS, Reign
      Just Outside: Sky Blue, Dash
      Wildcard: Orlando
      Basement: Boston, DC, FCKC

      If Orlando signs Martha for more an extended run, I’d move them up a level, but not into the playoffs.

      FCKC’s struggled creating goals last year. I can’t see how that gets any better with HAO gone and two top draft choices leaving.

      • DNG

        I see FCKC in the top 4 assuming Arod and Leroux come back resembling the players they were 2 years ago.

        • Bruce

          Maybe the most important problem for KC is having no real answer to losing both Holiday and HAO. Who is the motor of that midfield? Who’s a play-maker?

          Add that to the fact that Arod and Leroux are both well over a year removed from playing and I’d bet that that it’s unlikely they’ll be a contender.

          Would be happy to be proved wrong.

          • DNG

            FCKC finished strong last year without both of them and while HAO was definitely solid, I didn’t think she was amazing. They didn’t really have a playmaker last year but I think they should still be okay if they can score some more goals. They were very solid defensively and expect them to carry that to this year

          • mockmook

            Perhaps Stiever or Shaffer will be the mid engine

          • Bruce

            I don’t know Stiever’s game. The pre-draft knock on Shaffer was that she wasn’t an active/fast player.

            Dan just published a post that goes more in depth into the challenges facing FCKC.

          • Mandy Laddish is basically Holiday’s replacement. Obviously, Laddish and Tymrak aren’t the same caliber as Holiday or HAO, but that’s doesn’t matter as much as you think. KC shines on defense and their GA was the lowest of the league last year. Only 2 matches were lost by more than 1 goal. That means just 3-4 more goals scored during the year would have put them up by Chicago in the top 4.

            Adding a goal in any game (except the two 2-pt losses) turns those matches into draws or wins, meaning more points for the season.

            Just 2 goals (2 wins) ties them in pts to WNY. 3 goals (2 wins + 1 tie) puts them equal in points with Chicago.

            Adding Arod and Leroux (regardless of the midfield) is enough to get them those necessary goals. The defense should be just as strong, if not stronger, this year with Moros back with the team. So, all else being equal, KC is in the top this year.

          • DNG

            Portland actually had the lowest GA/G but I agree with the other points.

          • Oh, you’re right. 19. The goals scored is what really hurt KC last year.

          • DNG

            Yeah they should be fine if they can add another 10-15 goals

          • They were never blown out last year. 2-goal losses to the Spirit and the Breakers, but other than that each game was close.

          • DNG

            I see them as a top a team if Arod and Leroux look good. I trust Vlatko to make it work

          • Yes. So lucky to have Vlatko.

          • Steglitz49

            ARod and Syd always look good — whether they are on song, is a different kettle of fish.

          • Even 5 goals could have made all the difference in the world last season.

          • Steglitz49

            A soccer match is won by one goal. As Lars Lagerbäck once noted, winning 1-0 is very efficient. Following Lagerbäck’s philosophy, 5 goals are good for 5 victories.

            “Seven brides for seven lads”, and all that.

          • ^ So, my math is off. 2 goals/2 wins would give them 4 more points, not 6 more points, but you get the idea. They were close. All else being equal (which I know it’s not), adding 2 goal scorers to the team should only improve KC’s standings in 2017.

            https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/8a971d7518d1c3c42b55ab956b532536516bfac0aa373013ab3be5038380db2d.png

          • Bruce

            Thanks for the insight Slicey. I always learn something from your posts.

          • mockmook

            Laddish was played as Holiday for the first few months of the season, but then they tried a bunch of people at CAM the remainder of the year (since Laddish didn’t really get the job done).

          • Steglitz49

            Too many Hs, Os and As lost?

      • DNG

        I like the Thorns, Courage, and FCKC to make the playoffs not sure on the 4th. I’m leaning towards SBFC, Dash and CRS for 4th. Reign around 5th-6th and Orlando, Boston and Washington in the bottom 3

      • smallchief

        I agree with your top four: Portland, NCarolina, Chicago, and Seattle.

        Most intriguing team will be Sky Blue which had a whole covey of draft choices, sort of like WNY last year. Plus Sky Blue has Kerr who just might prove herself to be the best forward in the world.

        With Arod and Leroux coming back I think KC might also contend for a playoff spot.

        The DC team is a wreck, apparently because of its owner. It’ll be interesting to see how it does, but it could be awful. I also don’t have much in the way of expectations for Orlando, Houston, or Boston. . .

        • Silver Frost

          My predictions are usually wrong, so who knows? Orlando is the big ? mark for me at this point. They have a great coach, some great players (NT caps), and a new stadium with good fan support (far better than CRS or SB).

        • Guest

          Despite DC’s tire fire, they can still field a pretty good XI:

          Williams………..Ordega………..Agnew
          …………..Mewis………….Lohman……..
          …………………….Huster…………………..
          Dydasco…Zadorsky..Johnson..Kleiner

    • How are you giving sky blue no chance? They should contend for the playoffs. If not, it will be a disappointment.

  • AnonyR

    Anyone know what happened to the other Thorns draft pick Tyler Lussi?

    • mockmook

      I’m guessing it was merely an oversight, but we shall see.

      • DNG

        Might be finishing school. The Thorns don’t have any designations other than non roster invitee and drafted player

        • Bruce

          Caitlyn Murray tweeted that she would find out today directly from the Thorns.

          • tonysocref

            Jamie Goldberg (Oregonian) and Jeremiah Braebock (Stumptown Footy) indicated that they would be asking the same at today’s training. Hopefully between the 3 we get an answer 🙂

          • Bruce

            Goldberg now says will ask Riley during a 1:1 on Thursday.

          • Som Termanni

            At school, per Jamie Goldberg.

  • FawcettFan14

    Sucks for FCKC. They had the year’s best draft class, only to lose two of them. One to a team overseas, and one to the dreaded ACL.

  • Reality

    It looks like Sofia Huerta is now officially a midfielder according to the CRS preseason roster. She had played there quite a bit during the 2016 campaign but was at forward too. Of course, things can change in the course of the season…

    • Bruce

      She played right flank pretty much throughout the W-League season too. At least for the 4 or 5 games I watched.

      It’s a great move for her. She is a much more dangerous threat running at a back line then she is receiving the ball with her back to the goal in the box. She also brings an execptional work rate that plays into CRS focus on disrupting play in the midfield.

      • Reality

        I saw Huerta play the right flank from a field seat at Sky Blue last year and I thought she did quite well. I agree that she is better running toward and facing the box. She is also aggressive on the ball and I hope to see her improve on defense this year. This will allow Press to focus on being a forward for this full season. However, as you and I have mentioned in other posts, it was unfortunate to lose midfielder Michele Vasconcelos who was supposed to provide more midfield experience. I’m curious to see how Morgan Proffitt works out and how they will platoon the various forwards to work with Press up front.

        • Any word on if that Lisa Devanna to Chicago rumor is going to pan out? Or is it too late at this point? She could possibly be the missing forward partner for Press that could put them over the hump.

          • Reality

            Hadn’t heard that rumor but to be frank, I wouldn’t want Devanna on the team. While she is fast and aggressive, she is now 32 and I think her disadvantages outweigh her advantages insofar as she fouls too much and imo would generally be a disruptive influence.

          • That’s true. There is obviously a reason why she bounces from club to club. But I do think her pace could be helpful. Probably not worth it for a whole season though. Chicago seems like one of the more cohesive teams, wouldn’t want to disrupt that.

          • guest

            Interesting considering there are mumblings that Press is a prima donna and unhappy in Chicago.

          • Please show me one ounce of evidence. People love saying that about Press but yet she’s never said anything but good things about the city and club.

          • DNG

            Not that I think Press would be one to ask for a trade or kick up a fuss, but do you not think there could be a possibility of her being unhappy there? I wouldn’t exactly call their support of their team in terms of marketing great.

          • htm222

            She was really upset when she was first allocated there IIRC. Tbh none of the teams have the magic combination of good location and rabid fanbase with the exception of Portland. All things considered CRS isn’t that bad. I’d rather live in Chicago than Orlando, New Jersey, NC, or Houston…

          • Again though, where did you read this?

          • DNG

            It all depends on what is most important to her and her preferred city might be different from yours or mine. And while I might not personally like the weather in Orlando, a lot of the players who play there have spoken highly of the Organization and facilities.

          • guest

            She was upset because she was supposed to be part of this huge deal with Red Bull buying out Sky Blue when she first came to NWSL. That was when she was allegedly going to be the New Alex Morgan, and she was going to be one of the Red Bull Girls and it was supposed to come with a big sponsorship package. That’s what I remember from way back when. Then that fell through, so she ended up going to what at that time was one of the worst facilities/lowest attendance/worst performing teams in the league. Dames has turned it around.

          • NYRick

            Are you sure this wasn’t one of my Christen Press fanfiction pieces?

          • My point exactly. People love making this stuff up about Press for some reason.

          • DNG

            Dames has made the team a pretty good team. He hasn’t really turned around those other things.

          • ABCDE

            Don’t they play on a better pitch now? I didn’t follow them then.

          • DNG

            They moved to Toyota just last year but their attendance ended up going down year over year I think. Not sure if it will be worth it to keep playing there or even what the future of Toyota is.

          • Steglitz49

            Red Bull has never cared about WoSo. Red Bull only sponsors established female superstars, like Lindsey Vonn.

            If she honestly believed that hogwash you describe, then she can’t have learnt much at either Stanford or Göteborg or the school of hard knocks of real life.

          • guest

            Vonn isn’t that big of a star. Leroux has more SM followers than her, and she hasn’t played a game in over a year. And she hasn’t been effective as an athlete in years

          • Guester

            Leroux might have a bigger following among young girls but more people in a larger demographic probably have heard of Vonn… if for no other reason than she dated Tiger Woods, as sad as that is.

          • guest

            Vonn and Leroux both have more followers than Tiger Woods. fyi.

          • guest

            on instagram. Tiger has more “older” followers presumably, given his FB following

          • Steglitz49

            With friends like you, WoSo does not need enemies.

            Only Stenmark is greater than Vonn. Does that mean that Leroux is ahead of Cruyff and just behind Pelé?

          • Steglitz49

            LA are trying to get Zlatan. If they land him, they won’t be able to afford a ladies team.

          • guest

            I don’t understand why the WNT is so much more popular than the MNT, but a women’s team in a soccer hub state is considered a bad investment. For all they know LAFC women could be the new PTFC

          • guest

            Agreed. If you are going to put a new NWSL team anywhere, put it on the west coast. I could see LAFC ultimately ending up with Morgan and Press – I bet they both ask for a trade, depending on Servando’s situation.

          • Steglitz49

            Does your L stand for Lyon?

          • Reality

            I don’t think LAFC gets to have both Morgan and Press. Considering that Morgan has already gotten her wishes fulfilled 3 times by first going to Portland, then Orlando and now Lyon, does she get another gift by going to LA? Press, on the other hand, was forced into Chicago so I think she gets dibs on LAFC especially since Morgan actually requires a double favor in having her husband transferred to LA. However, let’s see how Mia Hamm plays into this equation.

          • guest

            I don’t think “fair” is necessarily a concept when it comes to sports business trades, or anything in life, but we’ll see.

          • Reality

            Indeed.

          • guest

            lol. They could very well end up like Orlando. Stacked with Morgan and Press, and screwed as far as building the rest of their team.

          • Reality

            That’s why I don’t think they would be so rash as to try to get both of them.

          • Guester

            The bad investment is paying out the nose for Zlatan. How did Beckham work out for Galaxy?

          • Steglitz49

            “Bend It Like Beckham” launched Keira Knightley’s career.

          • Steglitz49

            Nationalism vs club loyalty.

          • Not saying Chicago’s situation is completely ideal but I think she puts in the work and does what she needs to do for that team as a Captain. Would she probably rather be elsewhere, say Portland? I’m guessing yes, but I think she is mostly happy in Chicago as far as a work situation goes. I think she genuinely likes playing for Rory.

          • DNG

            My only point was that all of that can be true, and she could still want to leave. Maybe unhappy was the wrong word to use.

          • Bruce

            I would hate to see her go, but think that a team that would commit to helping her build her brand would be hard to turn down. CRS could easily draw fewer fans this season than last. It’s pathetic.

            Since early November CRS has produced no (zero, nada) marketing content other than transactional articles like W-League match results, NT camp call-ups etc. While other teams are producing player profiles, video interviews, camp diaries, preseason primers and the like, CRS is simply posting grainy cell phone photos on Twitter. Not one article about Press, Johnston, Short or Naeher during that time. It’s so obvious that they don’t have a marketing plan it hurts.

            Plus, the season starts in 30 days and they haven’t announced when single game tickets will be on sale. There are no promotions in place to drive attendance. They don’t even have a director of ticket sales.

            http://nwslsoccer.m.teamworkonline.com/Jobdetail.aspx?j=102563

          • DNG

            Well the CRS have her through allocation and right now there isn’t a lot that she can do to force a move without the CRS getting significant compensation. I wouldn’t be too worried about her leaving.

          • Steglitz49

            Christen is in the golden cage. An Allocated USWNT player collects about $150,000 in a lean year even after screwing up the OGs. Can’t walk away from that — even if there was somewhere to walk to.

          • mockmook

            If she wanted a trade, she could threaten to go to Europe.

          • DNG

            I suppose she could. But they could still refuse and then she wouldn’t be able to play in the NWSL. I suppose they might look to deal her in that case though since that would be a big problem for them either way.

          • #1Fan

            Made me laugh

            shes 32 now and fast and aggressive – you dont want her.

            US captain is 34 , slow and she is bedding in for 2019

            Ironic

          • Reality

            Both are disruptive…one does it quickly while the other is more insidious.

          • DNG

            I wouldn’t be surprised if some of Lloyd’s teammates got tired of her soon if her performance doesn’t start to improve. Is that enough to get things moving who knows. They can’t actually believe that Lloyd is the best player on the planet even if they don’t say anything to be respectful.

          • Steglitz49

            Carli has the campaign medals and goals. DeVanna has a reputation.

          • Bruce

            where is that rumor circulating?

          • It’s been a while since i’ve seen it, so there was probably no truth to it. Not sure where exactly I saw it now.

        • smallchief

          Huerta will score goals wherever she plays. I’d prefer to see her as a forward and equal partner with Press, but…she can play right flank well.

          I thought she was clearly Adelaide’s best player and got better as the W-league season went on — being selected as player of the month for the league in January. . . . .

          • Reality

            To a large extent, how McCaffrey performs at forward in partnership with Press will determine whether Huerta has significant playing time there. It is possible that Dames might alternate Huerta and McCaffrey depending on the opponent and match circumstances. And don’t forget that both Hoy and Walls are waiting in the wings not to mention Brittany Ratcliffe and Summer Green.

          • Bruce

            Given Dames’ approach with this team, I’d wager that his first priority will be to sort out the weaknesses of last year’s (left) flank play. Ratcliffe, Green and Huerta are all possible midfield pieces.

          • Reality

            And they are all forwards which makes it a conversion process. Huerta seems to be making a good transition, but I wish that Dames could obtain another good midfielder. That international slot must be good for something although Dames’s knowledge and contacts are admittedly more domestically oriented.

          • mockmook

            I believe they are all Forwards with experience as mids too — I don’t see much of a “conversion”

          • Reality

            Let’s hope so.

          • Bruce

            Agree. Huerta was clearly best on field for Adelaide. I’m sure her confidence is sky high heading into the NWSL season.

    • Hopefully that move will allow Press to play as the target forward, instead of having to drift back into the midfield so much. Should be beneficial to both players.

      • Bruce

        I’m hopeful NOT to see Press playing CAM or drifting to the wing this year. I’d think her best spot would be as a centrally positioned forward accompanied by an active, wide playing F (like McCaffrey).

        Will be fun to see how having her for a full season with the team will turn out.

        • Totally agree. I’m really looking forward to following Chicago this season. They should be good and Press should be right up there for Golden Boot, as long as she stays healthy. This may be their year.

          • Steglitz49

            Press is always healthy and 2013 and before that 2012 was her year though she did not realize it.

        • Steglitz49

          As long as she does not hit the crossbar again too many times in critical matches, you can play Christen wherever it pleases you, though clutch events be better avoided.

      • Reality

        I agree. Since this will be Press’s first full season with CRS, I’m looking forward to see how she performs both as a full time forward and as the Captain of the team.

        • Steglitz49

          Christen had a full season with Göteborg and carried them all the way to the Champions league QF and helped them retain the Swedish Cup, scoring in the final against her future club Tyresö. She came second in the goal scoring league, only Anja Mittag besting her.

          Christen then had a more than fair season with Tyresö though they did not win anything. Christen became goalscoring queen but Tyresö lost to her old club in the Super-Cup.

          Five years have passed since that glorious season for Gbg.

    • Steglitz49

      Sofia Huerta ought to renew her connection to the Mexican WNT. That way she can help them qualify for WC-19 and play in a world championship.

  • guest

    Why would you get drafted and then bail to Europe? Show a little respect.

    • Steglitz49

      Buchanan and Lawrence did — but they are Canadians, not Americans.

      Savannah played her cards to perfection. Yeehaw!!!

      • mockmook

        You were merely wrong about everything:

        B and L weren’t drafted.

        Jordan let everyone know she was bailing before the draft.

        • Steglitz49

          Thank you for reading and demonstrating that you understood my comment.

          Buchanan and Lawrence did “show a little respect” by not entering the draft.

          Savannah “played her cards to perfection” by hinting that she might play in Europe. Thus, she got drafted by Portland and not Boston or Sky Blue.

          It is good that someone reads my comments.

  • Bruce

    All White Kit has compiled an undrafted rookie tracker for those of us who just care too much.

    http://www.allwhitekit.com/?p=15259

  • Som Termanni
    • DNG

      What I expected. Makes sense considering their roster logjam too.

  • Reality

    I look forward to seeing Press play at forward, where her talents can be utilized most effectively. Hopefully Jill Ellis will be carefully watching, and taking note of where she can best contribute to the future of the team. Unfortunately, there is the problem of Lloyd. Her removal is important to advancing the national team style of play.

    • NYRick

      Hi, Reality. What a great point! Never heard that one before. CP23 is in her prime now. She is the most explosive, exciting, intriguing player in the US pool. That knucklehead Ellis doesn’t realize what she has. It’s time for Brett Farve to move on and give Aaron Rodgers his chance. Press needs to tell one Ms. Carli Lloyd to f-off.