NWSL: Utah Royals Acquire USWNT Star Christen Press; Morgan Brian Makes U.S. Return

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It was announced Monday night that a pair of trades had been made in the NWSL between the Houston Dash, Chicago Red Stars and Utah Royals FC that will see the return of Christen Press to the NWSL.

The first trade involved Houston trading the rights to Press to Chicago and a 2020 NWSL College Draft conditional first-round pick in exchange for forward Sofia Huerta and midfielder Taylor Comeau.

The second trade consisted of the Red Stars then shipping the rights to Press and defender Sam Johnson to Utah for defender Brooke Elby, the 2019 NWSL College Draft No. 1 pick and an additional 2019 first-round pick. Chicago also received three conditional picks: a first and second-round pick in the 2020 NWSL College Draft and a 2021 first-round pick.

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This is the second time this year Press has been traded after she was originally traded to Houston in January but did not report to preseason camp amidst not wanting to play for the Dash. She then signed a short-term contract with Swedish club Goteborg F.C. in March, returning to the team she starred for in 2012. She now returns to the U.S. to play for Utah, where she recently played for the USWNT in a friendly against China PR.

A regular member of the USWNT, Press has registered 100 caps and scored 44 goals internationally while winning the 2015 World Cup. She is a four-time NWSL Best XI Team selection and has scored 35 goals in 60 matches in the NWSL, good for fourth all-time in league history.

Press looks to make an instant impact with her new club, who are currently sit fourth in the NWSL standings despite being seventh in the league in goals scored (out of nine teams). The addition of Press should help the Royals finish more goal scoring opportunities.

Morgan Brian returns to NWSL

After a failed stint at European power Olympique Lyonnais in France, USWNT star Morgan Brian is returning to the NWSL after terminating her French club contract, signing with the Red Stars today.

Brian was acquired last August in a trade with Houston, playing in two games with the Red Stars before departing to France.

Brian, the youngest member of the 2015 World Cup winning team, has struggled with injuries in 2017 and 2018, but looks to get back on track returning to the NWSL.

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