With the WPS draft less than 12 hours away, Sky Blue FC has their plan. They know what they need and whom they would like to get. But the reigning champs have a pretty full roster already and only really need to fill a couple of spots. Let’s check out where they stand.
What they have:
- US Women’s National team midfielders Kacey White, Heather O’Reilly, and Yael Averbuch. Averbuch was Sky Blue FC’s first round pick in last year’s College draft, White was the third pick in the general draft while O’Reilly was allocated to Sky Blue in 2008.
- US Women’s National team forward Natasha Kai. Kai was also allocated to Sky Blue in 2008.
- US Women’s National team defender, Sky Blue and US Women’s National team captain and soccer mom, Christie Rampone.
- English National team defender Anita Asante.
- US Women’s National team pool goalkeeper Jenni Branam and defender Keeley Downing
- US Youth National team member Kerri Hanks.
- US U-23 defenders Megan Schnur.
- Brazilian midfielder Rosana
What they have lost:
- Midfielder Jen Buczkowski and forward Noelle Keselica in the Expansion draft. Keselica was picked up by the Atlanta Beat, while Buczkowski was added to the Philadelphia Independence's roster.
- Canadian forward/midfielder Kelly Parker and Australian midfielder Collette McCollum due to their options expiring.
- Brazilian midfielder Rosana, who opted to stay in Brazil.
- Developmental players goalkeeper Cori Alexander, and forwards Katie Hooker, Mele French, and Lauren Sesselmann.
- Midfielder/defender Julianne Stitch due to free agency.
Who they’ve acquired:
- US Women’s National team midfielder Carli Lloyd through free agency.
- Ashleigh Gunning, a defender from Sky Blue FC’s W-League affiliate the Hudson Valley Quickstrike.
- Finish forward Laura Kalamari.
- Daphne Koster, a defender who plays for the Dutch National team.
- Swedish forward Jessica Landstrom.
Having won last season’s WPS crown, all eyes will be on the reigning champs this season as they look to repeat. However, they will begin the league with two key defenders on the injured list in Christie Rampone due to her pregnancy and Anita Asante who is rehabbing a knee injury. With that said, they definitely will be looking to temporarily fill that spot.
Daphne Koster will bring international experience to the team as well as being able to fill that spot. By the sixth overall pick in tomorrow’s draft, several top notch defenders should still be available in Stanford’s Ali Riley, Uconn’s Brittany Taylor, and Boston College’s Kelly Henderson.
The key for Sky Blue is versatility and they will be looking to draft players who can play multiple positions and add depth to an already strong roster.
We have under 12 hours until the reigning champs choose who they will add to this year’s roster before their 2010 WPS season kicks off at FC Gold Pride on April 17, 2010.
To follow the WPS draft LIVE, visit www.twitter.com/womensprosoccer on Friday, January 15, 2010 at 10 AM ET / 7 AM PT.