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Official: San Diego Wave FC acquire star forward Alex Morgan

A deal is done, for real now.

Soccer: U.S. Women’s National Team Summer Series-USA at Portugal Erik Williams-USA TODAY Sports

Update, Dec. 16: The deal has officially been announced by the league. In exchange for Morgan from the Orlando Pride, San Diego send back the player rights to Angharad James and $275,000 in allocation money. James will be reunited with her partner in Orlando and San Diego just picked up $200,000 in a separate blockbuster trade involving Kristie Mewis, so they basically spent $75,000 to get Morgan. Not bad at all.

San Diego Wave FC have been hard at work building their inaugural roster, and now they have landed a legitimate superstar, in Alex Morgan.

The forward was traded to San Diego from the Orlando Pride, but neither team is yet revealing the terms of the deal. Why is that? I really can’t tell you, I’ve never encountered a partially officially-announced trade before in my life.

“We are thrilled to have a player of the caliber of Alex Morgan both on the pitch and in our locker room,” said Wave FC head coach Casey Stoney in a team statement. “Alex is a proven goal scorer at the very highest level and her world class ability, mentality and competitiveness will only add to our ability to compete in this league. I am excited to work with Alex and to see what this team can achieve.”

Morgan, 32, is one of the most decorated American players in history. Turning pro out of Cal in 2011, she turned pro with the Western New York Flash in the final season of WPS, before joining the Portland Thorns in 2013 in the new NWSL and playing there for three seasons, winning the league once in that span. In 2016, she was traded to the Orlando Pride and spent the next six seasons there, with loan stints at French powerhouse Lyon in 2017 and at Tottenham Hotspur in 2020.

A U.S. international, Morgan has racked up nearly 200 senior caps since 2010 and has won two World Cups plus an Olympic gold medal and Olympic bronze medal in her illustrious career to date. She has 115 goals at international level, good for 5th all-time among American women.

The move to San Diego is a homecoming of sorts for Morgan. While she grew up to the north in Diamond Bar, her husband Servando Carrasco grew up in the San Diego/Tijuana area and so the family is returning to Southern California, which seemed to be something she was eager to do at this point in her career. With NWSL teams finally in the state, it’s something that can actually happen.

“As a Southern California native, I am excited to be making a long-term commitment to Wave FC and the city of San Diego,” said Morgan. “I am coming home to partner with this ambitious new club and to push the league forward for generations of soccer players to come. I cannot wait to get started and I will do everything I can to help bring a championship to this great city.”

So we’ll see what the terms of the trade to acquire Morgan were whenever the teams get around to announcing them, but signing Morgan is a no-brainer, for both soccer and marketing reasons. She’s one of the top stars of the women’s game in the world and has done a ton to help professionalize the game over time, here and abroad. Exciting times, indeed.

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