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NWSL players, officials react to expansion draft

Ella Masar_Chicago_Red Stars

It should have always been expected, but there were plenty of surprises on Friday from the Houston Dash in the NWSL Expansion Draft.

Houston chose to draft only one U.S. allocated player – Meghan Klingenberg – and also drafted Canadian defender Lauren Sesselmann, whose agent says she is not under contract with the league in what is an ongoing debate.

The Dash made significant midfield additions, including Becky Edwards from Portland Thorns FC and Sky Blue FC’s Brittany Bock, who reunites with coach Randy Waldrum, who she played for in college at Notre Dame.

We also learned that Bayern Munich and U.S. striker Sarah Hagen’s NWSL rights rest with FC Kansas City, though her name was mistakenly tweeted since discovery players were supposed to remain anonymous, several sources said. The only other discovery player that came into play was one from Portland, which did remain anonymous.

Ten players in all were taken, but the deals are far from done for the day or the week heading into the Jan. 17 NWSL College Draft. Here’s some reaction from around the web:

Alex Morgan seemed none too happy about losing Mana Shim as a teammate, adding that she was sad to see Shim and Becky Edwards leave Portland:

Ella Masar departs Chicago, where she played as a Red Star in three different leagues just minutes from her hometown:

Don’t expect the player movement to stop, as several teams seem ready to make moves, if they haven’t already. FC Kansas City president Brian Budzinski said as much on Twitter:

Somehow the Western New York Flash got away without losing any players, and perceived top target Angela Salem was relieved:


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