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MLS Draft, Edison Flores has D.C. United physical, Sullivan & Bledsoe re-sign, and more: Freedom Kicks for 1/10/2020

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Your local pro teams are so close to getting back underway

Caitlin Buckley

Yesterday was MLS SuperDraft day, which means it really feels like we’re starting the 2020 season now. The NWSL draft is six days away. D.C. United made picks, Edison Flores is reportedly in town for his physical, and more moves are coming. It’s happening! We’re doing this again!

MLS Draft 2020: D.C. United select Temple goalkeeper Simon Lefebvre | Black and Red United
I get the skepticism around United drafting an international goalkeeper when they’ve got 3 on D.C. contracts and another on a Loudoun deal, but a) Simon Lefebvre trained with United this past summer and b) swapping one fairly late allocation order spot for another is close to the most innocuous MLS trade possible.

MLS Draft 2020: D.C. United select Loyola Greyhounds forward Josh Fawole | Black and Red United
We all like to see DMV players getting their shot with United, and there’s plenty of room at the moment for Josh Fawole to develop with Loudoun, and maybe even get some looks with D.C. in the preseason.

D.C. United adds 6-foot-9 goalkeeper in MLS draft as it nears high-profile signing | Washington Post
Per Steve Goff, Edison Flores has arrived in the District for his physical, and we could be moving this one from “any time now” to “official,” uh, any time now.

2020 MLS SuperDraft Grades | MLSsoccer.com
Travis Clark gives United a C+, mostly based on where he rated Lefebvre among the available goalkeepers. It sounds like he thinks Fawole can get the job done at the USL Championship level.

MLS Draft | SB Nation
Want to catch up with what other teams did yesterday? Here’s a list of posts from all over SB Nation’s MLS sites.

Let’s move on. How about Washington Spirit defender Sam Staab and former Spirit midfielder Amy Harrison learning how to make pizza?

Andi Sullivan, Aubrey Bledsoe ink new deals with Spirit | WashingtonSpirit.com
There was no major threat of departure hanging over Andi Sullivan or Aubrey Bledsoe, but it’s still good for the Spirit to sign last year’s best defensive midfielder and best goalkeeper to new contracts. That’s a thing you want to do when you’re a soccer team.

Midge Purce is a smart addition to Sky Blue FC’s ongoing refresh | The Equalizer
I’m not quite as ready to buy on Sky Blue being a truly good team as some of my fellow NWSL writers (at the moment there’s a clear top 5, and despite improvement Sky Blue is not on that list yet), but I do think Midge Purce is going to be a really dangerous player for them.

On a team where Carli Lloyd draws so much defensive attention, Purce — whether she plays as a 9 or wide right — is going to have a ton of space to get out on the run.

Their next step? Well, this trade cost them an absolutely crucial central midfielder in Raquel Rodriguez, and they do not have anyone even sort of cut out to replace her. So that’s probably the move.

Breaking down the NWSL’s first flurry of trades as pre-draft preparation begins | The Athletic
We’re less than a week from the NWSL draft, and the trade blitz has already started. Purce and Rodriguez traded coasts, Emily Sonnett’s in Orlando, the #1 pick (probably Stanford forward Sophia Smith) is now Portland’s to use, and Kealia Ohai got a requested move to the Chicago Red Stars. A lot is going on.

Alright that’s it, I need to go out into the world. Enjoy your weekend!