A blockbuster NWSL trade is being finalized that will send superstar Alex Morgan from Portland to the new expansion team in Orlando, SI.com has learned.
The trade, which is set to be completed in the coming days, comes at the request of Morgan so that she can live in the same city as her husband, MLS midfielder Servando Carrasco, who plays for Orlando City. According to sources with knowledge of the deal, Portland would not have agreed to trade Morgan unless she had made her request for personal reasons.
In return for Morgan and Canadian national-teamer Kaylyn Kyle, 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.
Morgan, 26, is the most popular U.S. women’s player and one of the most dangerous scorers in world soccer. It’s probably a good thing for the growth of the NWSL that Morgan will go to a new market where she can help galvanize the fanbase. Meanwhile, Portland figures to remain the best-supported team in the league even if Morgan doesn’t play there.
With the Orlando Pride, Morgan will be reunited with manager Tom Sermanni, who was her coach with the U.S. during his tenure preceding Jill Ellis's reign at the helm. Sermanni was named the expansion side's coach earlier this week.