St. Louis Athletica Trade For Asante And Washington

Lauren SalterContributor IMay 4, 2010

HELSINKI, FINLAND - SEPTEMBER 02:  Anita Asante of England in action during an England Training session at the Turkul stadium on September 2, 2009 in Helsinki, Finland.  (Photo by Ian Walton/Getty Images)
Ian Walton/Getty Images

In a press release today, St. Louis Athletica general manager Tim Owens announced that St. Louis has acquired defender Anita Asante, attacking midfielder Nikki Washington, and a second round selection in the 2011 WPS Draft from Sky Blue FC. In exchange, Athletica is sending forward India Trotter and their first round selection in the 2011 WPS Draft.

"It is tough to give up a great player and a great person such as India Trotter," said Owens.

Athletica also released Brazilian international Daniela.

Asante, a London, England native, appeared in 16 games for Sky Blue FC last season. She is also a member of the England Women's National Team, and played with Athletica forward Eniola Aluko with England. Asante, 25, played every minute of England's four games in the 2007 Women's World Cup, and also played club for Arsenal FC in North London.

Nikki Washington was selected in the 2010 WPS Draft by the Los Angeles Sol after a stellar senior season at University of North Carolina. In her four years at UNC, Washington scored 17 goals and recorded 28 assists. Her rights were acquired by Sky Blue FC after the Sol dispersed earlier this year, but did not come to contractual terms with Sky Blue.

"This is a move we feel clearly makes our team better by addressing a need," said Owens. "We have acquired one of the world's elite defenders, which was a priority for us. Plus, we were able to bring in a young, dynamic, and very versatile player that is one of the young, upcoming stars in U.S. Soccer."

India Trotter departs St. Louis after playing in three games, logging 34 minutes while posting no goals and no assists.

Due to Asante's international status, Athletica released Brazilian Daniela, who last appeared for Athletica on May 3, 2009. Each WPS team is allowed five international players. In that May 3 match, Daniela suffered multiple ligament tears to her knee and a cracked tibia. She appeared in three games for the Athletica, posting two goals, including the first in franchise history.

“It was a very difficult decision to part ways with a player such as Daniela,” reflected Owens. “She is a warrior, and she has a passion for the game that is second to none. We will always consider Daniela to be a part of the Athletica family.”