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Boyds, Md. (1/14/20) – With the 2020 NWSL College Draft just one day away, take a look at what Spirit Head Coach Richie Burke had to say about the Spirit’s plan heading into draft day.
“It’s a different process for player acquisitions this year for us,” said Burke. I would say it’s general consensus that we won the draft last year, but in doing so, we gave away the farm.”
The Spirit made a big splash at the 2019 draft, making four picks in the first round. The 2020 draft may tell a different story, as the Spirit hold only pick number 23 and 32 in the third and fourth round, respectively.
With the Spirit’s draft positioning in mind, Burke has made it known that Washington might make a move on draft day, saying: “We’re going to try and negotiate to bump up the order… allocation money is a trading tool, future picks and international roster spots are all methods that we can convince another club to give us a pick.”
Late picks have paid dividends in the past for NWSL clubs. Most recently, 2019 fourth-round pick Marisa Viggiano made 19 appearances for the Orlando Pride last season. Lo’eau Labonta, drafted 38th overall by Sky Blue in 2015, contributed two goals and two assists in 22 appearances for the Utah Royals in 2019.
No matter what happens on draft day, Burke says he knows what type of player he wants to bring in, saying: “We’re looking for players who embody our culture and can come into our dressing room and our football club and really help us become a better team.”