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NWSL concludes investigation into racial profiling allegation, sparking more questions


The NWSL announced on Tuesday that no disciplinary action would be taken following an independent investigation into Red Stars defender Sarah Gorden’s allegations of racial profiling by a security guard in Houston.

The league initiated the investigation on April 13 after Gorden tweeted that she and her boyfriend, who are Black, were “targeted” by security after the Red Stars’ game against the Houston Dash on April 9.

The NWSL said it conducted the investigation based on the protocols set forth in its Anti-Harassment Policy for a Safe Work Environment.

“Following multiple interviews with witnesses and a review of the venue security footage, the investigation was closed,” the league said in a press release.

The NWSL’s public statement confirmed it would have no further comment on the matter.

Some on social media compared the Houston investigation to a 2020 league inquiry into Utah Royals owner Dell Loy Hansen after reports of him making racist comments emerged.

Women’s soccer writer Steph Yang hit on a point of concern for many following the NWSL’s statement — the league’s perceived secrecy on internal matters.

As Meg Linehan of The Athletic pointed out, perhaps there is a legal policy that restricts the NWSL from speaking further, but the consistent lack of transparency from the league has manifested in a lack of trust among fans.

This investigation and the league’s subsequent response have renewed questions about NWSL policy that, to many, remains opaque and unclear.