There’s quite a bit on the soccer news front, as you may have guessed from the headline this morning. The WPS has held its combines on the East and West coasts, and is gearing up for its draft on Friday, January 16th. (That’s this Friday, folks!) Here’s some nice video from the West Coast combine last month. Both snippets capture the anticipation, pressure, and exhilaration of the event nicely!
Pia has called 25 players back to camp, among them, Abby Wambach! They’ll be in camp from January 20th to February 4th hope they get to watch the Inauguration!). Next up, The Algarve. March 4-11. (Wouldn’t it be cool if some part of that were televised …for a change?) Let’s keep our eyes out – you never know. In a piece of good news for her, but not-so-good-news for the USWNT/Red Stars, I read that Kate Markgraf won’t be suiting up in the near future, as she’s pregnant with her second child.
But back to WPS … where things are hopping! The Draft on Friday, January 16 is a multi-round draft for any eligible player who has filled out and submitted the Prospective Player Form. Players not attending the combines as well as combine participants can be drafted. The selection order for the 2009 WPS Draft was determined via lottery with the following results:
1. Boston Breakers
2. Chicago Red Stars
3. Bay Area
4. Sky Blue FC
5. Los Angeles Sol
6. St. Louis
7. Washington Freedom
The Breakers are in great shape, with the #1 pick … and while Tony isn’t saying a whole lot, I’d be very, very surprised if we didn’t see A-Rod in Breakers’ Blue come April! The way the draft works, the “picking order” reverses with each round. “That means once the Breakers make the first pick, the other six teams will all make two picks before the Breakers next turn. At that point they will make the 14th and 15th picks. Then the wait starts again. (The Washington Freedom, who possess the last selection in the first round are the other club that will make consecutive picks throughout the 10-round draft.)”
In other Breakers news, the team just signed its first international player – Canadian star (and former San Diego Spirit threat) Christine Latham to a multi-year contract. She played college soccer at that Canadian soccer outpost, the University of Nebraska – and was named WUSA Rookie of the Year in the league’s final season. “We are delighted to bring in a player of Christine’s caliber and to have signed our first international player,” said Breakers President and General Manager Joe Cummings. “She gives us a strong, physical presence up front and has a proven ability to score goals at the highest level.” I have to agree. The thought of Christine Latham and Amy Rodriguez up front for the Breakers is sweet!
Speaking of sweet, I read that Norwegian Club Umea has broken off its negotiations with Marta’s peeps – meaning that in all likelihood she’s heading toward the LA Sol. Now that will be awesome, eh? Not that it would help the Sol against the Breakers, mind you … 😉 A deal bringing Marta to the WPS is anticipated this coming week – and will dovetail nicely (maybe) with her being named FIFA Player of the Year (again) – an honor for which she is on the short list!
Coverage of the WPS Draft begins on Thursday night (1/15/09, 8-10 PM ET) with special programming on the Fox Soccer Channel. Be sure to tune in!
Then, on Friday, once the draft is underway (10:30 AM ET), you’ll be able to follow progress on Twitter. Here’s the necessary info and a helpful explanation – for those not yet quite up to speed on the whole Twitter thing (personally, I’m wondering about taking the leap to getting text message updates … hmmmm … another technological growth opportunity!:
Women’s Professional Soccer will be offering live coverage of the 2009 WPS Draft on Friday, January 16 at 10:30am ET (9:30am CT) on http://fancorner.womensprosoccer.com via Twitter.
What is Twitter? It’s a micro-blogging platform that allows users to broadcast short posts on the web and via text message.
– On WPS’s Social Network. Our Twitter will be embedded on our http://fancorner.womensprosoccer.com homepage on Friday, January 16. You can get a sneak peek now.
– On WPS’s Twitter Page. http://twitter.com/womensprosoccer
– Via Text Message. Won’t be near a computer on Friday, January 16? Not a problem. Follow these steps to receive the Draft results via text message:
- Go to http://twitter.com/womensprosoccer
- Create a Twitter account by joining today.
- Once your account is created, be sure you are following our Twitter.
- Then set up your phone to receive our tweets by going to http://twitter.com/devices
- One last step: Go to http://twitter.com/friends and turn device updates on for womensprosoccer
Phew … I’ll probably post something later about politics and Eagles love … but it’s sure nice to have the WPS getting closer on the horizon, eh?