The Orlando Pride have bolstered their back-line with the addition of another United States women’s national team player.
On Wednesday, the club announced it traded with the Washington Spirit to add defender Ali Krieger. Per the release, the Spirit receive the Pride’s second-overall spot in the distribution ranking order. The Pride will take Washington’s ninth spot in the list.
Krieger was instrumental in leading the Spirit to a team-record 39 points last season. Washington would ultimately fall in the National Women’s Soccer League Final to the Western New York Flash by PKs 3-2 after drawing 2-2.
“We’re ecstatic to get Ali Krieger to the club. She’s one of the best players in the country,” Pride head coach Tom Sermanni said in a statement. “She’s extremely experienced, a great leader, great personality and a great signing for us leading into 2017. I think she’ll help both on the field and off the field. She’s a real thorough professional, so her preparation will start to influence and help our younger players.
“Her focus and her quality in her training and play will be a huge asset to the team.”
Before her tenure with the Spirit, Krieger played for 1. FFC Frankfurt in the 2007-2008 season and from 2009 to 2012. In her first season there, she led the Frauen-Bundesliga team to Bundesliga Championship and UEFA Champions League titles.
The 32-year-old was also a part of the 2015 Women’s World Cup-winning team. Per the report, she was a part of one of the best defensive performances in World Cup history, where the USWNT recorded five shutouts, allowed only three goals and, at one point, went 540 minutes without allowing a goal.
As for the rest of the Pride’s defenders, Orlando has offered contract extensions to defenders Toni Pressley and Australian women’s national teamer Steph Catley. Orlando will also retain Matilda Laura Alleway, McKenzie Berryhill, Monica Hickmann-Alves and Cami Levin, per contract options. Federation players Josée Bélanger and Kaylyn Kyle are still with Orlando, too.