Houston Dash / National Women's Soccer League / Portland Thorns FC

Busy Monday for Dash, Thorns

With less than one week before the 2014 NWSL College draft, two NWSL clubs were busy signing and sending players.

The Portland Thorns announced the signing of German goalkeeper Nadine Angerer this morning.  The move, which had been widely speculated, was announced during the press conference prior to the FIFA Ballon D’or announcements this afternoon.

Angerer, who won the 2013 FIFA Ballon D’or  Monday afternoon, has won the World Cup twice as a part of the German squad in 2003 and 2007.  Most recently, she helped lead Germany to its sixth straight European Championship where she made a penalty kick save in each half of the 1-0 win over Norway in July.

She comes after spending time in Australia’s W-League, suiting up for the Brisbane Roar after a four-year stint at FFC Frankfurt from 2009-2013.  She has also spent time in Sweden’s Damallsvenskan with Djurgårdens IF and with 1. FFC Turbine Posdam from 2001-2007.

The signing was the first of three roster moves in Portland on Monday.

The defending NWSL champions sent goalkeeper Karina LeBlanc to the Chicago Red Stars in exchange for a 2015 second round pick.  LeBlanc is a veteran on the Canadian Women’s National team and was a part of the bronze medal winning squad in London.

The Red Stars now have four Canadians on their roster following an NWSL rule change on Jan. 10.  Allocated players may now be traded freely (meaning that there is no longer a mandatory allocated player for allocated player swap).

The final move of the day for the Thorns sent the club’s No. 16 selection in Friday’s draft to FC Kansas City in exchange for midfielder Sinead Farrelly.

Farrelly made 10 starts in 16 appearances for FC Kansas City in 2013 and scored once.  She is on loan with Apollon Limassol LFC (Cyprus) until the end of January.  She was drafted second overall in the 2011 WPS draft by the Philadelphia Independence — coached by Thorns head coach Paul Riley.

“Sinead is a versatile player and was one of the best box-to-box midfielders in WPS,” head coach Paul Riley said. “She is smooth, intelligent and has an engine second to none. Having coached her before, I know her strengths and she brings a lot to the table and will be a great addition to our 2014 team. She will relish playing in Portland’s atmosphere and she has the potential to be a fan favorite.”

The Thorns were not the only club making moves on Monday.

The Houston Dash bolstered their roster, acquiring goalkeeper Bianca Henninger from FC Kansas City.  In return, the Dash sent the No. 19 overall pick to Kansas City.

Henninger was originally drafted by the Philadelphia Independence in the 2011 WPS draft and played in WPSL Elite with the New York Fury.  She suited up twice for FC Kansas City in 2013.  She was also a member of the U.S. U-20 World Cup squad in 2010.

“We made a great trade in solidifying our goalkeeping needs,” said Dash head coach Randy Waldrum.  “Bianca played for me with our U-23’s, and she is one of the best young US goalkeepers out there.”

Henninger will battle with Canadian starter Erin McCleod for the starting spot with the Dash.

Houston also acquired forward Stephanie Ochs from the Washington Spirit in exchange for forward Danesha Adams.

Adams was drafted by the Dash in the Expansion draft on Jan. 10 and spent the 2013 season with Sky Blue FC where she scored three goals and added three assists.

Ochs played in all 22 matches for the Spirit and has spent the offseason playing in Australia’s W-League for Canberra United where she has tallied four goals in seven matches.  She was drafted as the No. 1 overall pick by the Spirit in the 2013 Supplemental Draft.

Ochs was also a member of the U.S. U-23s in which Waldrum coached 2012-2013.

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