Reign FC hasn’t been afraid to make moves in its short history as an NWSL franchise, and Monday’s trade for U.S. women’s national team star Sydney Leroux might have been its biggest to date.
On the other end of the league-shaking transaction, Seattle sent newly acquired Kristie Mewis, backup goalkeeper Michelle Betos and two draft picks to the Boston Breakers.
Leroux, a British Columbia native, had played for the Sounders Women in the star-studded summer of 2012. The dynamic forward joins Hope Solo and Megan Rapinoe as the Reign’s U.S. allocated players.
“This will be a big change for me, but one I am really excited about,” Leroux said in a news release. “I’m looking forward to getting the chance to play for Laura Harvey and be a part of what she’s building in Seattle. I truly enjoyed my time in Boston and I want to thank the Breakers fans for all their support. I have a lot of great memories from time with the club. Now I’m looking forward to being closer to my family in the Pacific Northwest.”
Last year, Leroux had 11 goals (tied for second in the league) and two assists in 19 games with Boston. Four of those goals were game winners.
This year, Leroux had 10 goals for the national team (three in her last two games). The UCLA product has 24 international goals overall.
“Sydney Leroux is one of the world’s best forwards,” said Laura Harvey, general manager and coach, in the release. “She is a young, extraordinary talent with unlimited upside. Sydney will be the consistent goal-scoring threat that we struggled to find last season.“
The picks involved in the trade at Seattle’s first- and second-round selections in the 2015 NWSL College Draft. Mewis, a U.S. international, was acquired in an offseason trade last month with Kansas City and, thus, never played for Seattle. Betos started seven games for the Reign last year when Solo was out injured.
“Despite playing behind Hope for much of last season, Michelle Betos was a major part of our club,” Harvey said in the release. “She was a tireless worker, an incredible teammate and a player any coach would want on their club.”
Just before announcing the move, Reign FC tweeted out the phrase: “Audaces fortuna juvat.”
That translates from Latin to, “Fortune favors the bold.”
Bold indeed, and it sounds like there is more to come.
“At the end of last season we crafted a comprehensive plan to reshape our roster with the intent of building a squad capable of competing at the highest level,” said owner Bill Predmore in the release. “The trade for Sydney is a massive step in the right direction, but only one of several moves we intend to make before the start of the season. Our supporters should expect more good news in the days and weeks ahead.”
I'm very excited to be joining @SeattleReignFC and to be going home!
— Sydney Leroux (@sydneyleroux) November 18, 2013