The Orlando Pride have been around, officially, for all of a day and a half, and yet the expansion National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) club (owned by the same folks in charge of MLS side Orlando City SC) is set to make the signing of the offseason.
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According to a report from SI’s Grant Wahl, a deal has been agreed between the Pride and the Portland Thorns that will see U.S. women’s national team superstar Alex Morgan head to the Sunshine State, where she’ll be able to live in the same city as her husband, Orlando City midfielder Servando Carrasco, and play for former USWNT head coach Tom Sermanni.
Morgan, who featured heavily during the USWNT’s 2015 Women’s World Cup triumph, played each of the last three seasons (since the NWSL’s inception in 2013) for the Thorns.
From Wahl’s report:
In return for Morgan, Portland is set to receive Orlando’s first pick in the NWSL draft, two international slots, U.S. national team fullback Meghan Klingenberg (who’s expected to not be one of the two protected national team players from Houston) and likely Lindsay Horan as the first new allocation coming in from overseas if Horan decides to join the NWSL from PSG.
Given that the Lions and Pride are operated by the same ownership group, a city like Orlando was always the most likely destination for the USWNT star and her slightly less famous husband (Portland Timbers and Houston Dynamo owners also own and operate their own NWSL teams).
The same circumstances surround fellow USWNT superstar Sydney Leroux, who plays for the Western New York Flash and is married to Sporting Kansas City forward Dom Dwyer. Rumors of a proposed trade to FC Kansas City have been regularly floated since the two announced their marriage on Valentine’s Day, but FCKC is owned by a group separate from Sporting KC.