Alex Morgan weighed in on the NWSL expansion draft discourse Monday, saying the draft “should not exist.”

Her reaction came after her now-former San Diego Wave teammate Rachel Hill, who was selected in the expansion draft by Bay FC, posted to social media, thanking the Wave and their fans.

“Did not think I’d be sitting here writing this after only one season,” wrote Hill, who had chosen the Wave in free agency last season and signed a two-year contract through 2024. “I’ve loved every second I had in San Diego and I’m sad it’s come to an end like this.”

Morgan shared Hill’s post to her own Instagram, writing: “The NWSL expansion draft should not exist. Period. If you reach free agency and choose the club and city you want to play for, you deserve the [opportunity] to see that through. It was torture watching the expansion draft, really.”

The USWNT and San Diego Wave forward isn’t the only person to criticize the process. Multiple head coaches have done so in the last week, including Wave head coach Casey Stoney, who wrote: “We have to find a different way!!!! It can be done because I have done it!!!!!!”

Meanwhile, Laura Harvey of OL Reign, who lost two players to the expansion draft, wrote: “I’d just like to make it official. I dislike the expansion draft. I also dislike that I chose to be in England whilst it was on, so now it’s 1.30am and I’m wired. Thanks very much!”

North Carolina Courage head coach Sean Nahas also was critical of the process. Seven players were selected, five by Bay FC and two by Utah Royals FC. Of those players, two already have been traded, as San Diego brought back Sierra Enge – who had been selected by Bay FC – with the help of Houston while also trading with Utah for former OL Reign forward Elyse Bennett.

“I don’t think people actually realize the damage that is created by this process and what it does to players, clubs and those relationships,” Nahas wrote Saturday. “We should be protecting the league and not 9 players per roster. There needs to be another way.”

Before the draft, North Carolina and San Diego engaged in trades with the new teams to try and limit their losses in the draft and to maintain more control over the future of their lineups. OL Reign did not make any trades with either Bay FC or Utah Royals FC.

Utah Royals sporting director Kelly Cousins conceded after the draft that the process of expansion should change.

“When you get to draft day, it’s not nice for anyone, even for us, being in it,” Cousins said. “You’re picking a player, and a new player finds out in the moment, live on telly, that they go to another club. For us, that doesn’t sit well, I think it is something that probably should change because you’re saying a player could be uprooted. We’re a week away from Christmas, and now they might have to move to the other side of the country.”

But Bay FC general manager Lucy Rushton called the expansion draft “imperative.”

“I think it’s essential because I think without it, it would have been very difficult for us to amass a roster from within the NWSL,” she said. “Is it the nicest mechanism through which to acquire players? No, probably not, not for the players and it’s tough. I certainly think it’s essential and especially now, having gone through the process, it scares me to think what some of the numbers might have looked like that teams might have asked for to trade their players.”

The league will go through an expansion process again in a couple of years, with Boston and one other team set to begin play in 2026.

Canadian superstar Christine Sinclair scored a dazzling goal against Chicago on Saturday, marking her fourth this season for the Portland Thorns.

But the Red Stars rallied to beat the Thorns, 2-1, handing Portland their second loss in their last three games.

Sinclair, 38, scored in the 24th minute to open the scoring for both sides. Surrounded by defenders, Crystal Dunn was able to tap the ball to an open Sinclair outside the box. On a one-time shot, the veteran forward sent the ball off the inside of the far post and into the net.

The Thorns goal was quickly answered with an equalizer from Kealia Watt of the Red Stars in the 25th minute.

Neither team was able to edge ahead until Rachel Hill scored the eventual game-winner in the 65th minute off an assist from Mallory Pugh.

Up next, the Thorns host the second-place OL Reign on Saturday, Oct. 2, in a match-up with major playoff implications.

The Red Stars shutout North Carolina 1-0 on Saturday to secure the club a critical home win.

Chicago put the Courage under pressure early, with Mallory Pugh and Kealia Watt stretching North Carolina’s back line. Pugh looked to be in top form, charging at the Courage’s defense and creating chances in the final third.

Knocking on the door for much of the first half, Chicago scored the game’s lone goal in the 29th minute off a Red Stars’ corner. Rachel Hill got on the end of a redirected cross from Tierna Davidson, punching the ball past Casey Murphy to put Chicago up 1-0.

The Red Stars continued to shut down North Carolina’s midfield throughout the second half, quieting the typically explosive Courage. Even with the second-half substations of Kristen Hamilton and Hailie Mace, North Carolina was never able to find its groove against Chicago.

Both teams will have some time off before the Red Stars host the Spirit on June 19 and the Courage host OL Reign on the same day.

First off, how has coronavirus impacted both your life and your training? How have you dealt with all the uncertainty around the delay? 

It has put an interesting twist on preseason. I’m trying my best to have some structure throughout the days. Staying on a good eating schedule, as well as remaining active as much as possible has helped a lot. Maintaining fitness is my biggest focus right now, until we’re able to start training again. The delayed start to the season is obviously unfortunate, but it’s building up my excitement even more for when we do get to start.

Going back to the beginning: you were originally drafted by Portland, then traded to Orlando three days later. What was your mindset like knowing you were about to be playing with stars like Alex Morgan and Marta? 

It started out as a whirlwind. Like, drafted by Portland, yay. And then three days later, nope, nevermind, heading to Orlando. I was really excited to get picked up by any team, but joining a team with players like that was definitely a bit nerve wracking. And I went in late as well cause I finished school first, so everyone else was used to playing with each other and being in Orlando.

I’m pretty shy, so I didn’t really say anything for at least the first couple of days. Just kept to myself, did what I had to do, and listened. But the team was great and very welcoming, making sure I wasn’t too nervous. And as the days went on, I started to have more conversations off the field. Players like Chi [Ubogagu] and Dani [Weatherholt] took me under their wings and made sure I was comfortable with everything. It took me a couple of weeks to adapt to the speed and I definitely had to turn my brain on a bit more. I kinda just got thrown into games and just went from there.

You pretty quickly went from new kid on the block to being one of the team’s leading scorers. What allowed you to make such a big jump?  

So my first trip, I can’t remember the dates exactly, but it was only a couple of weeks after I had gotten there. I didn’t expect to travel with the team, but I did. I didn’t play at all in the first game in Seattle, but then the next couple of games, I saw a couple of minutes. And then maybe a month later, I started my first game against Boston. And that was just surreal. It was amazing to get that opportunity. As time went, I felt like I really fit in with the team and was just able to contribute and develop as a player, especially going from that first year to the next. I wasn’t a consistent starter, but when I did get in, I made the most of my minutes. Scored a few goals. And then the third year I became a consistent starter, which was one of my goals. I feel like just getting minutes and actually getting to play a lot is really what helped me.

A lot of players struggle with the transition from being a star in college to then having to restart the whole journey in some sense of first being a back-up again and then having to slowly work their way onto the field. How’d you handle that mentally? 

Like you said, going from college and being the star to not even starting or maybe not even traveling, it’s definitely tough. And I think that in the back of my mind, I was just never satisfied with the minutes I got or how I played and stuff like that. I mean, you got to the pros, but are you really where you want to be? I just tried to make the most of every minute I got. I continued to work my hardest and slowly build my confidence, even if I was only getting 20 minutes a game. I made the most of it while also never being satisfied with minutes I was given.

You were traded to Chicago in the offseason. What are your thoughts about changing teams? 

I love Orlando, love the sunshine, and I’m definitely going to miss that. The team was always great with us, treated us really well. And you know, everyone could see we had such a star-studded team on paper, but for some reason things just hadn’t really clicked with us there. After being there three years, I was pretty comfortable there and I was really happy. But I think for my personal growth, I needed a change and I needed to try something new and be put in a new environment to try and challenge myself. So in the end, I’m hoping the move will be really good for me in that I am able to grow and have new experiences with different players and a new coach.

What makes you excited about Chicago in particular as the next stop on your journey? 

Chicago’s obviously been really successful in the past, so I just hope that I can help build on that success. Before I was traded, I didn’t know all of them obviously, but just from what I had heard about the girls, it sounded like they were a really great group. Team players, really team-focused and team-driven. And that’s what I love to be a part of. It’s just a team that is really all together and you know, fights for each other and works hard for each other, but also, you know, can have a laugh and is really enjoying what they’re doing.

And then on the field, obviously they’re going to need someone to step in and fill all the goals Sam Kerr scored. Katie Johnson is still there, and then adding Kealia [Ohai] and Makenzy [Doniak] and myself, I think we have the potential to have a pretty lethal front line this year, and I want to do everything I can to be a part of that.

You’re going into your fourth year. How has the league evolved since you joined? 

I think it’s been really great just to see the development from my first year till now. Definitely a lot of steps in the right direction, including the new TV deals and the salary cap being raised. Now we have housing provided for year round. All those things make such a difference, and they really show you just how hard everyone is working in the league to make it better and to improve every step of the way.

There’s a lot of uncertainty surrounding the 2020 season, but what would be your goals on the field for yourself and the team?

Team-wise is to make a run in the playoffs. I think with the success they’ve had, the ultimate goal this year is to win the league. But just game by game, we will have to grow as a new group. And my personal goal is to do everything I can to fit in with that group and get the most goals that I can and just do whatever the team needs me to do. I love to score goals, so hopefully I’ll have a chance to get some goals this year. But overall, I just want to do everything I can, work as hard as I can, to help the team be the best that we can.