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Friday Freedom Kicks: Debinha leaving NC Courage, goalkeeper signings, NWSL draft list, and more

Keep warm with this hot news

Washington Spirit v North Carolina Courage Photo by Andy Mead/ISI Photos/Getty Images

Happy holidays from the frigid Midwest! Luckily, we’ve got some signing and other soccer news to catch up on while you’re staying warm inside.

The North Carolina Courage announced that Brazilian midfielder Debinha will not be re-signing with the team. Debinha has been a major force for North Carolina for six years, helping to lead them to two Championships and three NWSL Shields. In 2022, she came in 3rd place in the Golden Boot race and was a finalist for league MVP. As a free agent, Debinha is one of the hottest potential signings, but with no new home for her announced yet, it seems increasingly like that she could be leaving the league entirely.

Both Washington Spirit and Loudoun United FC have made deals to bring back goalkeepers. The Spirit have re-signed free agent and two-time Olympic gold medalist Nicole Barnhart; while former D.C. United Academy player Dane Jacomen will be joining Loudoun’s roster for the 2023 season.

The NWSL announced the current list of players registered for the 2023 draft. The NWSL Draft will take place at 6 p.m. on January 12 in Philadelphia.

Finally, FIFA is investigating how restauranteur Salt Bae gained access to the World Cup pitch — and the Cup itself — during Argentina’s victory celebrations. The internet celebrity and flamboyant steak-preparer has been criticized after being filmed and photographed kissing the World Cup trophy and speaking with Messi and other Argentinian players celebrating their win.