Christen Press will not report to the Houston Dash who have made plans to move forward without her. The news was first reported by Corey Roepken of the Houston Chronicle. Press was traded to the Dash by the Chicago Red Stars in a three-way, draft-day blockbuster that saw Carli Lloyd traded to Sky Blue and reigning MVP and golden boot winner Sam Kerr to the Red Stars.
According to Roepken’s reporting, the NWSL office informed the Dash that Press would not be joining the club. The team attempted to work out a trade but could not reach an agreement with any other club. Press never acknowledged the trade publicly or on social media. Following the U.S. national team’s Sunday match at Red Bull Arena she declined to answer questions about the Dash.
Press joined NWSL in 2014 as an allocated player and was assigned to the Chicago Red Stars. In almost four full seasons she scored 35 goals for the Red Stars. The team made the playoffs each of the last three seasons, losing in the semifinals each time. In 2016 Press hit the cross bar with the goalkeeper out of position at the stroke of full time against the Washington Spirit who later eliminated the Red Stars in extra time.
Press and the Red Stars agreed to go their separate ways after the 2017 season and she provided a list of preferred trade destinations. Houston was not on the list but Roepken reports that the club received assurances from a Press representative and the league office that Press would play for the Dash. That was before the trade was executed.
Sources also tell The Equalizer that a trade was agreed to to send Press to the Utah Royals but she balked at the deal. She later agreed to go to Utah but by that point some of the pieces in that deal had been traded elsewhere.
The Dash will retain Press’s NWSL rights indefinitely. She may sign to play elsewhere provided those leagues transfer windows are open.