A loan deal that would have brought a centerback from English Women’s Super League side Chelsea FC Women to the Orlando Pride was shot down by the National Women’s Soccer League, a club source confirmed to Pro Soccer USA.
Both clubs agreed to the terms of the loan deal, but the league decided last week it would not approve the transaction due to a recall clause in the deal, the source said.
NWSL has not yet responded to an email from Pro Soccer USA seeking comment.
Pride GM Erik Ustruck told Pro Soccer USA in a previous interview he was working to get a loan deal over the line and had been doing so since the end of March.
Chelsea (12-6-2, 42 points) finished in third place in the Women’s Super League and allowed just 14 goals, second-fewest in the league.
The NWSL transfer window closes Thursday.
The Pride (0-5-1, 1 point) are hurting for centerbacks at the moment. Starting centerbacks Shelina Zadorsky (Canada) and Alanna Kennedy (Australia) are gone for the 2019 Women’s World Cup. Morgan Reid, who is in her first season with the Pride, and Toni Pressley, who is recovering from injury, were the starting centerbacks in the Pride’s 3-1 home loss to the Portland Thorns on May 11.
Ustruck told Pro Soccer USA last week he was working on “three or four things” domestically ahead of the close of the transfer window.
Orlando will at least have the services of forward Caitlin Farrell in the near future. She’s finished with school at Georgetown and was present for training on Tuesday. Farrell scored 18 goals to go with three assists in her final season with Georgetown.