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Monday morning buzz: WPS key dates, Florida stadium, financial struggles in England, Australia

Women’s Professional Soccer announced key preseason dates on Monday, while news out of England and Australia involves women’s teams on the brink of folding.  There is also progress in magicTalk SC/Washington Freedom’s potential Florida venue.

WPS

Preseason begins March 1, at which point teams can carry a maximum of 30 players in camp.  On March 14, rosters will be trimmed to 28 players and March 25 will bring a second round of cuts, this time bringing rosters down to 26 players.  Regular season rosters are due to the league on March 30.  Those will consist of 24 players, a change from the first two seasons of WPS.

In 2009 and 2010, WPS rosters consisted of 22 total players, 18 of which were senior players and the other four were developmental.  In 2011, there is no such thing as a developmental player and the total roster size for each team has increased by two players.  The WPS season kicks off on April 9.

magicTalk SC/Washington Freedom’s Florida Stadium Search

A report out of Florida states that magicTalk SC/Washington Freedom could use Florida Atlantic University’s soccer stadium as its home facility.  The report also says FAU would provide services such as ticket sales and event staffing, which would solve that sort of serious problem that magicTalk SC/Washington Freedom does not currently have a front office.

Lockhart Stadium does not fit the description of what new team owner Dan Borislow is looking for.  In December, Borislow told The Equalizer this about the team’s potential new stadium: “It will be a grass field, that’s for damn sure.  It won’t be a football field either.”

So much for that Lockhart idea.  FAU’s soccer stadium is a grass field and the location matches the one Borislow’s target market.  On Monday, Borislow said that the location of FAU is very central for the state of Florida and the many youth clubs in the area.

“FAU is in a great spot and would be super partners,” Borislow said of the potential move.  “Boca is the best location in Florida for a WPS team. ”

Australia

Word out of Australia is that Adelaide United may be exiting the Westfield W-League, citing a lack of funds to keep the struggling team afloat.  The situation seems to be worsening following initial reports that the club’s leadership does not see value in the women’s side.

There is no denying that Adelaide has been bad – really bad – at least by simply glancing at results.  In three Westfield W-League seasons, Adelaide has accumulated a record of 2-24-4.  The team did not earn a single point in its 2010/11 campaign.

The club has not made official the dropping of its women’s team, but reports out of Australia suggest all signs point to that conclusion.  The Westfield W-League operated with seven teams in 2010/11 after Central Coast Mariners pulled its team from the Westfield W-League prior to the start of the season.  Losing Adelaide would bring that number to six, the same number WPS enters its 2011 season with.

The 2010/11 Westfield W-League season just finished with Brisbane Roar topping Sydney FC 2-1 in the Grand Final.  The two teams have met in each of the three finals in league history.  Brisbane won the first outing, with Sydney taking last year’s trophy.  On Monday, Swedish defender Alexandra Nilsson was named the league’s Most Glorious Player, a more elegant term for MVP.

England

There is also financial trouble for Nottingham Forest in England.  The team is set to take on Barnet in the Premier League Cup Final on March 24, but the squad may not be able to fulfill the fixture, Tony Leighton reports.  Forest can no longer sell itself to sponsors as the top flight of women’s soccer with the FA Women’s Super League kicking off this spring.  Forest will remain in the Premier League, one level below the FAWSL.  That has made it hard to sell sponsorship.  The club needs £5,000 by the end of February to continue operating.

Also check out Leighton’s piece on a worry that international talent could hurt the growth of the FAWSL, which was created to better develop English players.

Of note on the U.S. Women’s National Team front: Steve Goff reports that Head Coach Pia Sundhage earned $219,635 from March 31, 2009 to April 1, 2010.

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