WPS Holds International Draft

SAN FRANCISCO, CA (Sept 24, 2008) WPS -- Women’s Professional Soccer announced the results of its WPS Initial International Draft on Wednesday, officially assigning the WPS-playing rights of those selected by the individual teams. Each team was allowed to draft four international players, providing teams with the opportunity to begin a formal negotiation process with each selected player upon receiving permission from that player’s current club. For the 2009 season, teams will ultimately be allowed to sign up to five international players per roster. The results of the draft included the selection of 10 players from Brazil, four from Japan, three from Australia and three from Canada.

WPS Initial International Draft

1st Round
Bay Area: Formiga (Brazil)
Boston Breakers: Kelly Smith (England)
Los Angeles: Marta (Brazil)
St. Louis: Daniela (Brazil) Trade with Washington
Chicago Red Stars: Cristiane (Brazil)
Washington Freedom: Homare Sawa (Japan) Trade with St. Louis
Sky Blue FC (NJ/NY): Sarah Walsh (Australia)

2nd Round
Bay Area: Christine Sinclair (Canada)
Boston Breakers: Fabiana (Brazil)
Los Angeles: Aya Miyama (Japan)
Washington Freedom: Sonia Bompastor (France)
Chicago Red Stars: Heather Garriock (Australia)
St. Louis: Renata Costa (Brazil)
Sky Blue FC (NJ/NY): Rosana (Brazil)

3rd Round
Bay Area: Eriko Arakawa (Japan)
Boston Breakers: Maycon (Brazil)
St. Louis: Lotta Schelin (Sweden) Trade with LA 4th Rd
Washington Freedom: Lisa De Vanna (Australia)
Chicago Red Stars: Karen Carney (England)
St. Louis: Melissa Tancredi (Canada)
Sky Blue FC (NJ/NY): Ester (Brazil)

4th Round
Bay Area: Erika (Brazil)
Boston Breakers: Shinobu Ohno (Japan)
Los Angeles: Han Duan (China)
Washington Freedom: Louisa Nécib (France)
Chicago Red Stars: Caroline Jonsson (Sweden)
Los Angeles: Margret Lara Vidarsdottir (Iceland) Trade with St. Louis 3rd Rd.
Sky Blue FC (NJ/NY): Kelly Parker (Canada)

The draft does not reflect any intent or commitment on the player’s behalf to sign with this team or that any offer has been made to the player. Rather, it signifies the beginning of the process by which each team will move forward according to the FIFA Regulations on the Status and Transfer of Players. These regulations govern the relationships between players and clubs around the world.

The first step will begin with a formal notification from that WPS team to the respective player’s club regarding their interest in this player and serve as a notification of their intent to enter into negotiations with the player. Teams will only be allowed to move forward with a formal negotiation process once it has been confirmed that the player is in the last six months of her contract or if her respective club grants access to the player if her contract extends beyond the six month window. From this point, each team will work with the player to negotiate a mutually acceptable contract.

“The international draft was created to allow an equitable opportunity for the individual WPS clubs to develop their teams, by assigning the WPS-playing rights to the seven franchises that are beginning play in April 2009,” said Commissioner Tonya Antonucci. “Now they can go out to the market -- and after receiving permission from the player’s clubs -- put together the most competitive team they possibly can based on their selections.”

"Today's draft showcased interesting selections and last minute trades. Clearly there is a keen interest in Brazilian players, who bring a creative and dynamic rhythm of play," said Antonucci. "And more broadly, from Asia to Australia, Europe to the Americas, it's exciting to see our teams looking to sign players from across the world to play in WPS in 2009."

The order of selections was based on a weighted ranking voted on by league coaches following the U.S. Women’s National Team allocations on Tuesday, September 16. The WPS Initial International Draft will be followed on October 6 by a general draft of domestic players and remaining international players.

Courtesy of Women's Professional Soccer

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