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Servando Carrasco, Alex Morgan work to stay connected 2,500 miles apart

VANCOUVER, B.C – There aren’t many active husband and wife professional footballers, but they are out there. Alex Morgan and Servando Carrasco are among the most recognizable.

Morgan plays for the Orlando Pride in the National Women’s Soccer League, a team she joined in 2016 while Carrasco suited up for Major League Soccer’s Orlando City. The two celebrated being able to play in the same city. They bought a house in Winter Park, Fla., and made it their home. Then at the end of last season, Orlando City declined Carrasco’s contract option and the LA Galaxy selected him in the MLS re-entry draft. He signed with the Galaxy Jan. 11.

At best, it’s now a 5-hour flight across the country to see his wife. At worst, a more than 2,500-mile, two-day drive.

“It’s far from ideal to be that far from your wife,” Carrasco told Pro Soccer USA after playing the Vancouver Whitecaps last month. “We know that this is temporary. We’re only going to be able to play professional soccer for five to six more years. We’ve got to take advantage of this, and know that when we’re done playing we’re going to be together.”

While on opposite sides of the country, they make an extra effort to stay tuned in with each other.

“I support her fully. I saw her game today, and she came out with a concussion which sucked,” he said of the Pride’s March 24 matchup against the Utah Royals. “I watch her games, and she watches my games. We definitely make it work.”

Carrasco, a 29-year-old holding midfielder, was drafted 27th overall by the Seattle Sounders — then led by current Galaxy coach Sigi Schmid — in the 2011 MLS SuperDraft. He’s since played in 130 MLS matches with five different clubs, spending the last three seasons in Orlando. He has compiled two goals and six assists.

Reuniting with his wife is certainly on Carrasco’s mind. Playing in the same city again would be the best of both worlds, but it’s a challenge with both players in the prime of their careers and vitally important to their respective clubs. A long-distance marriage isn’t new to them. Last year, Morgan left to play in France for six months. Before they both landed in Orlando, Carrasco played in Seattle, Houston and Kansas City while Morgan bounced around with the USWNT and played with clubs in New York, Seattle and Portland.

“Ideally, yes,” Carrasco said on the topic. “But with this sport you never know, you take it day by day. Right now, she has a great setup at her current club and I’m doing well out here. We have to think about the right now. If at some point it kind of comes up that there’s a team in L.A., then great. As of right now, she’s happy there and I’m happy here. We’re going to try and keep on doing this for as long as possible.”

When they are together they like to spend time with loved ones and do everyday activities. Morgan’s achievements on an international level with the U.S. women’s national team do occasionally make it difficult for the couple not to be recognized while walking down the street.

“When we’re together we like to unplug from soccer,” Carrasco said. “We definitely talk about [the sport] a lot, and we like to watch soccer together. It’s also nice just to be normal, spend time with our family, nieces, spend time with our parents. Whenever she comes back to California we spend a lot of time with them. We go to the beach, we’re both normal people. We just try and be as normal as possible.”

The move back to the west coast has allowed the Tijuana-born, San Diego-raised Carrasco more time with family and friends he’s known all his life. While it’s good to see familiar faces again, it’s not quite a win for Carrasco’s matchday wallet.

“Being close to my family has been great,” Carrasco beamed. “They have the ability to come to games, whereas before they had to fly all the way to Florida, which is very difficult. I’ve been having to spend a lot of money on tickets, but it’s been really good. It’s always nice to be close to my family for sure.”

And though the couple eats, breathes and loves soccer. When they do take a break, they’ve got a guilty pleasure television show they can’t turn off.

“The last show that we’ve been watching is “This Is Us”, but she flew through both seasons pretty fast,” Carrasco said. “I couldn’t really handle it because it was a lot of emotions.”

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