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San Diego Wave FC 2022 Player Postmortem: Jodie Taylor

NWSL vet provided glue to new team.

NWSL: Angel City FC at San Diego Wave FC Kiyoshi Mio-USA TODAY Sports

Jodie Taylor joined San Diego Wave FC in 2022 for their inaugural season following a well-traveled career to date. The English forward made her top flight debut at the tender age of 15 with Tranmere Rovers, before coming stateside to play NCAA soccer at Oregon State. She’s since played in Canada, Australia, Sweden, France as well as the United States and England, her clubs running the gamut from Lincoln Ladies to Lyon along the way.

Wave FC was her fifth NWSL team, scoring 31 regular season goals across five seasons before her arrival in San Diego. As a veteran striker, I think there weren’t going to be too many surprises to Taylor’s game, but I admit I got one or two along the way anyway.

Here are Taylor’s stats with Wave FC in 2022:

Jodie Taylor San Diego Wave FC 2022 Statistics

2022 Games Played Games Started Minutes Goals Assists Shots SOG Yellow Cards Red Cards
2022 Games Played Games Started Minutes Goals Assists Shots SOG Yellow Cards Red Cards
Challenge Cup 6 4 326 1 0 7 6 1 0
Regular Season 13 6 557 1 0 9 5 3 0
Playoffs 1 0 3 0 0 0 0 0 0
Total 20 10 886 2 0 16 11 4 0

Taylor’s two goals came early in the year. First, she got the opener in Wave FC’s first win in club history, the Challenge Cup home game against Angel City FC:

And her second was the game-winner, at the very end of the regular season opener at the Houston Dash:

The uniting link between the goals was Taylor’s readiness, to prepare as the play unfolded and making the right run to get the ball into the net.

That was it for Taylor’s tangible production on the season, and while San Diego didn’t seem to suffer most of the time, between Alex Morgan’s career year, Taylor Kornieck’s breakthrough campaign, and contributions from the likes of Jaedyn Shaw and Makenzy Doniak, among others, I think ideally it would have been nice to see her score more but she was not on the squad only for her goals.

Probably the biggest surprise on my end was seeing her footwork. When I saw her in person this season, I found myself respecting her game far more than what I could see on TV. Taylor absolutely nails forward runs, and her ability to bring defenders into her orbit to keep them honest gave Morgan more room and therefore, more scoring chances.

But Taylor’s bag of flicks and tricks was most obvious in contrasting her play in person vs. on TV. Obviously I know she’s a professional, I know she’s a good player, but she has a ton of sneaky touches on the ball that’s apparently impossible to see on a screen. Honestly, Taylor has tons of swag, she tries incredibly audacious flicks to set herself and teammates up, and it’s a lot of fun to watch.

You can see this, to an extent, in her scouting report graph on She’s a good dribbler, compared across the top eight leagues, and she’s an above average defender as a forward. But the money categories, in attack, show limitations, particularly in advanced stats.

Now 36, Taylor is officially part of the first full Free Agent class in NWSL history, and Wave FC made it sound like she may not be in the team’s plans for 2023. I understand to an extent — Taylor was brought in for her ample experience in general but her particular knowledge of the NWSL, and her leadership and skills were useful for a new team. At the same time, the team performed well above expectations, yet there’s reason to believe the success under Casey Stoney wasn’t a flash in the pan. So if Taylor wants to test out Free Agency, which is her right, San Diego probably figure they can look for another player in that spot, which could be a win-win.

Still, while Jodie Taylor didn’t get a lot of headlines for her season with Wave FC, I still think she provided a useful role for the team and all in all, may have been rather underrated at it. We’ll see what’s next in her career, but best wishes to her moving forward.

What do you think? Leave a comment below.