Second-round draft pick Sydny Nasello will not play for the Portland Thorns during the 2022 NWSL season, according to The Athletic’s Meg Linehan.
The Thorns selected the University of South Florida forward 13th overall in the 2022 NWSL Draft in December. The decision sparked immediate controversy because of views Nasello had shared on Twitter in the past.
Sources have informed me that @ThornsFC draft pick Sydny Nasello will not join the team for the 2022 season. Thorns decided shortly after the draft, and have been working to find other options for the player. #NWSL— Meg Linehan (@itsmeglinehan) January 7, 2022
Sources have informed me that @ThornsFC draft pick Sydny Nasello will not join the team for the 2022 season. Thorns decided shortly after the draft, and have been working to find other options for the player. #NWSL
Nasello’s social media activity drew the ire of fans, most notably the Rose City Riveters, an organized group of Portland Thorns supporters.
“Fascism, racism, homophobia, transphobia- we are against these. We don’t support anyone who represents/espouses these views, full stop,” the group tweeted after the draft.
One of Nasello’s posts that resurfaced around the College Draft was a retweet of a message advocating for trans exclusion in sports.
First-year Thorns head coach Rhian Wilkinson said after the draft that the Thorns had not done the “work needed on the social media side” regarding Nasello’s signing. “I think it’s important that I state that this is an inclusive, open club that values its fans and knows what we stand for,” Wilkinson said.
Nasello apologized to Thorns fans after her selection but quickly protected her tweets, allowing only approved followers to view her account.
Linehan reports that Portland’s decision to part ways with Nasello was made shortly after the draft, and the team is working to find other playing options for the forward.