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WPS Announces Player Allocations of U.S. WNT

September 15, 2008 10:00 PM
Two-time NBA MVP Steve Nash hosts event in Manhattan
Begins countdown to inaugural 2009 WPS Season

NEW YORK (September 16, 2008) – Women's Professional Soccer (WPS) announced the allocations of the U.S. Women's National Team to its seven franchises Tuesday during a ceremony at the Sports Museum of America in downtown Manhattan.
The announcement was hosted by NBA All-Star and WPS part-owner Steve Nash and presided over by WPS Commissioner Tonya Antonucci.  Each of the seven teams set to begin play in WPS for the 2009 season were allocated three players apiece from the U.S. Women's National Team pool. The allocation followed an extensive process in which the players and teams submitted their preferences to the league and a committee then examined the lists to give its recommendations. The WPS Board of Governors met on September 14-15 to consult with players, teams and the league to determine the best possible dispersal for all parties with the following allocation results:
WPS Player Allocations – U.S. Women's National Team
WPS Team
Players Listed in Alphabetical Order
Bay Area
Nicole Barnhart
Rachel Buehler
Leslie Osborne
Boston Breakers
Angela Hucles
Kristine Lilly
Heather Mitts
Chicago Red Stars
Carli Lloyd
Kate Markgraf
Lindsay Tarpley
Los Angeles
Shannon Boxx
Stephanie Cox
Aly Wagner
Sky Blue FC
Natasha Kai
Heather O'Reilly
Christie Rampone
St. Louis
Lori Chalupny
Tina Ellertson
Hope Solo
Washington Freedom
Ali Krieger
Abby Wambach
Cat Whitehill
20 of the 21 players played their youth club ball in US Youth Soccer. US Youth Soccer is home to more than 3 million players annually, counting almost 50 percent (52/48 Male/Female) female players ages Under-5 through Under-19 in US Youth Soccer State Associations. Learn more about the numerous programs offered by US Youth Soccer at In fact, 17 of the 18 players selected to the 2008 Olympic team participated in US Youth Soccer Olympic Development program, click here to learn more. 
"The excitement for WPS allocation has been building for months as fans, coaches and even the players have been speculating about which athletes will be dispersed to each WPS market," said Antonucci. "This is a big day for Women's Professional Soccer, as teams now have Olympic gold medalists from Beijing allocated to their home cities along with other talented national team players. These are the first building blocks for the teams as the league begins the countdown to the inaugural 2009 WPS Season."
"Today has been a truly exciting and important day for the League and for the entire sport of women's soccer," said Nash, who, along with former Yahoo! President and Chief Operating Officer Jeff Mallett, joined WPS as a part-owner and investor last February. 
"The number of close games during the Olympics were a fantastic showcase of how the women's level of competition continues to grow globally," continued Nash.  "And here in the United States, we're lucky to have such talented players to call our own.  As a soccer fanatic and father of twin girls, I personally feel fortunate to be here at the ground level, playing a role in launching the League that will set the standard for women's play around the world."
Following this week's U.S. Women's National Team allocation will be the international draft of top global stars the week of September 22, which will assign teams the rights to negotiate with four premiere international players. That will be followed by a draft of remaining players in early October and again in January. The order of the international draft will depend on the weighted rankings voted on by teams following the U.S. Women's National Team allocation with the weakest-rated team selecting first and the strongest-weighted team selecting last.
"The allocation process was developed to give players the chance to provide their input on where they wanted to play, allow for dialogue between league and teams about marketing potential and to give the best opportunity for a level playing field among teams come April 2009 and the start of the WPS Season," said Antonucci.
How the Allocation Process Worked
The allocation process began with members of the U.S. National Team player pool submitting their city preferences to the League.  After reviewing the athletes' lists, the teams likewise forwarded their player preferences to the League. 
A WPS committee examined both lists and considered League and team marketing initiatives before sending an allocation recommendation to the teams.  Prior to the Sept. 16 announcement, the WPS Board of Governors held a 48-hour closed-door meeting in New York City to determine the final allocation results.  During this time, the Board of Governors consulted with players, teams and league in order to accomplish the best possible dispersal for all parties.
At the conclusion of the closed-door meeting, the Board of Governors forwarded its allocation decisions to Commissioner Antonucci for final approval.



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