The Houston Dash keep moving their pieces prior to the 2018 NWSL season as they trade two-time FIFA Player of the Year Carli Lloyd, and team Canada player Janine Beckie to Sky Blue FC for USWNT Forward Christen Press.
This trade does not come as a surprise for Houston fans. Carli Lloyd, who will turn 36 in the summer, was never happy in the city, which might have affected her performance on the pitch at club level. Moreover, she was very critical about being traded to the Dash since she did not have a say in where she wanted to be traded. However that should never have been an issue since Federations Players are allocated in NWSL teams according to team needs and markets.
In 2016 Lloyd gave the first indication she was not 100% involved and committed to the team when she scheduled a book signing tour for her book “When Nobody Was Watching” right when the Dash were trying to get into the NWSL Playoffs. The team did not qualify for the semifinals that year. Prior to the 2017 season, Carli signed a six-month contract with Manchester City WFC. Therefore, she missed half of the NWSL season before she injured her ankle, which forced her to miss several matches for the Dash.
On the other hand, Janine Beckie was a fan favorite. She was a committed and passionate player who was a crucial piece for the Dash last season. Beckie, who was part of the Canadian team which won the Bronze Medal in the 2016 Olympics, was improving her game. However, with Lloyd being almost 36, Houston needed to give up a young player.
The Houston Dash are definitely the winners in this trade, since Christen Press at 29, is one of the best forwards in the league. She brings experience to a young and revamped team.
New Dash head coach Vera Pauw reacted to the trade saying, “That is like a dream come true for a coach, because she will be the face of the team, we will build everything around here; and for a club like the Houston Dash with the facilities that we have, the professional organization that we have around it, the team needed a star like Christen Press. The fact that we were able to make this trade is fantastic. It’s really fantastic and I’m really looking forward to working with her.”
Houston is excited about the trade with fans hoping Christen will call the Space City home and come with a committed attitude to do great things for the team. The main goal for the Dash in this upcoming season is to qualify to the playoffs for the first time in franchise history.