Star U.S. women's national team midfielder Rose Lavelle was traded to OL Reign on Sunday in a move that was quickly followed by a transfer to Manchester City on Tuesday.
OL Reign announced it had acquired Lavelle from the Washington Spirit in exchange for a 2022 first-round draft pick and $100,000 in allocation money. Her NWSL rights will remain with OL Reign, which said Lavelle is "expected to sign an agreement to play outside the NWSL with immediate effect." That proved to be true after FA Women's Super League power Man City announced her acquisition, the second U.S. star midfielder to head to Manchester after Sam Mewis.
“We’re thrilled to have secured Rose’s services–with her impressive back catalogue, she is an incredibly exciting player and one we’re all looking forward to working with," Man City coach Gareth Taylor said in a statement. “Her endless accolades for both club and country are proof of what a talent she is and she’s exactly the kind of player we want here at City, with her ambitions and desire for success matching our own.
“I’m extremely excited to see her make her mark on the Barclays FA Women’s Super League this season in what will hopefully be a successful campaign for Manchester City Women.”
Like with Lavelle, Mewis has her league rights retained by her former club, the North Carolina Courage, should she return to the league. Both were starters on the USA's 2019 Women's World Cup championship team.
“Sam has been a tremendous leader for our club and her development has been astronomical,” NC Courage coach Paul Riley said in a statement. “She has improved her game in every department and I’m super proud of the player she has become. This step to Manchester City is important in many aspects. She gets to be uncomfortable again, her role will change, different tactics, and she will be shaped even further as she strives to become the best box-to-box midfielder in the world. Most important for Sam right now are competitive games especially leading into an Olympic year, and she will be able to play 20 games over the next six to seven months, which is hugely valuable.
“I’m excited to see Sam continue on her quest to be the best and we will continue to support her every step of the way,” Riley added. “We also look forward to the day she puts her NC Courage uniform back on.”
Mewis and Lavelle's deals are expected to be matching one-year contracts, according to The Athletic.
"Over the last few years, we have followed Rose’s career with huge interest and watched her grow into one of the best attacking midfielders in the world," Man City's head of women's football, Gavin Makel, said. “She is a highly technical and intellectual player who will give us another threat in the attacking third, and who will further strengthen the squad that we already have in place.
“I’m extremely pleased with our recruitment so far this summer and Rose’s signing is another example of our intentions with the league becoming more competitive."