all scores

Projecting Angel City, San Diego rosters after NWSL Expansion Draft

Tony Quinn/ISI Photos/Getty Images

Angel City FC and San Diego’s rosters are beginning to take to shape, with the dust now settled on Thursday’s NWSL Expansion Draft.

Both California expansion clubs prioritized bolstering their backlines, selecting reliable defensive players during the draft.

Angel City was awarded the first selection Thursday night, picking OL Reign defensive midfielder Dani Weatherholt, adding an experienced No. 6 to their roster. Orlando forward Claire Emslie, Dash forward Jasmyne Spencer and Washington Spirit defender Paige Nielsen rounded out ACFC’s remaining selections.

San Diego Wave selected Dash midfielder Kristie Mewis before trading her to Gotham FC in exchange for $200,000 in allocation money. In a post-draft trade, San Diego also acquired the rights to Christen Westphal and Amirah Ali from the Portland Thorns. The team officially traded Angharad James and $275,000 in allocation money in exchange for Alex Morgan as well, after previously announcing the deal this week.

OL Reign defender Kristen McNabb and Racing Louisville defender Kaleigh Riehl were selected fourth and ninth overall by San Diego, with the club passing on their sixth and eighth pick in what appears to be a pre-determined handshake deal.

So, how do the new selections fit with ACFC and San Diego’s growing rosters?

Here are where the lineups stand after the 2022 NWSL Expansion Draft.

Angel City:

  • Goalkeeper: Didi Haracic
  • Defenders: Sarah Gorden, Paige Nielsen, MA Vignola
  • Midfielders: Dani Weatherholt, Julie Ertz, Cari Roccaro, Katie Cousins
  • Forward: Simone Charley, Tyler Lussi, Claire Emslie, Jasmyne Spencer, Christen Press

San Diego Wave:

  • Goalkeeper: Kailen Sheridan
  • Defenders: Abby Dahlkemper, Tegan McGrady, Kristen McNabb, Kaleigh Rieh, Christen Westphal
  • Forwards: Amirah Ali, Makenzy Doniak, Katie Johnson, Alex Morgan, Jodie Taylor, Kelsey Turnbow

With little in the way of midfielders, it would appear all but certain that San Diego is setting themselves up to select Jaelin Howell of Florida State University in Saturday’s 2022 NWSL Draft. As a two-time NCAA Champion, Howell has proven herself as a reliable No. 6.

Angel City’s attack is looking stronger than ever after Thursday evening, adding Jasmyne Spencer, who should complement Christen Press and Simone Charley nicely up top in Los Angeles.

Teams will continue to fill out their rosters during the 2022 NWSL Draft, airing on CBS Sports on Saturday at 2 p.m. ET.