It’s been over a month since the Washington Spirit, speaking to media following the NWSL College Draft, said that they were planning on adding two internationals to their roster. Today, those plans are apparently close to reality, as the Washington Post’s Steve Goff is reporting that those players are Australian midfielders Chloe Logarzo and Amy Harrison, both currently with Sydney FC in the Australian W-League.
Per the report, Logarzo’s move would be a loan, while Harrison’s would be an outright full transfer. Both players are currently teammates with Spirit goalkeeper Aubrey Bledsoe, who has spent the last two winters on loan with Sydney.
Update 7:45pm: Shortly after this article was published, the Spirit confirmed both the loan deal for Logarzo and the full transfer for Harrison. In a team release, Spirit head coach Richie Burke said “Adding two quality players of proven International pedigree like Chloe and Amy is huge for our club... I believe they will make a huge impact with our team and in our league.”
Logarzo, 24, has 37 caps for the Matildas and figures to be a regular starter for Australia at this summer’s World Cup. She has 6 goals for the national team, 5 of which came in 2018 (including a strike against the USWNT in the Tournament of Nations). She has spent the majority of her pro career playing for Sydney, who will take on Perth Glory in the W-League’s Grand Final this weekend. This season, Logarzo has started every game for Sydney, posting 3 goals and 2 assists while adding 12 key passes from the heart of the midfield.
At 22, Harrison is somewhat less well known internationally. She has 8 caps for Australia, but has not appeared for them since 2017. Harrison has spent her whole professional career with Sydney, debuting as a 16 year old in 2012, though she lost a full season in 2016 due to a torn ACL. This season, Harrison has 9 starts and 10 total appearances in the short W-League season.
Both players are historically midfielders, but Harrison has made some appearances at left back for Sydney this season. That could just be a case of Sydney having to fill a problem position any way they can, but with Washington in dire need of defensive additions, it’s worth paying attention to. After drafting Tegan McGrady and signing Megan Crosson in the past month, that’s the one position on the Spirit’s back line that is well-stocked. However, Harrison appears to be comfortable using both feet, and may be able to switch over to right back, which could cover for the loss of Taylor Smith, who will miss much (or possibly all) of the season due to a torn ACL.
Adding Logarzo and Harrison brings the Spirit up to 11 players under contract. 7 more players (Arielle Ship, Meggie Dougherty Howard, Francisca Ordega, Joanna Lohman, Cheyna Matthews, Tori Huster, and Ashley Hatch) were given contract offers during the offseason but remain officially unsigned.
However, reading between the lines from Washington’s advertising and social media posts, it seems likely that those players are returning. Burke mentioned Huster and Hatch by name as players he plans on building around, for example. While more signings from outside the NWSL remain a real possibility, bringing back the out-of-contract group while adding Logarzo and Harrison would leave the Spirit with just 4 remaining roster spots to distribute among their 5 draft picks. A new league policy has added 4 additional spots that essentially give clubs a non-roster “practice squad,” which the Spirit seem very likely to take advantage of due to the number of internationals they’ll be missing during the World Cup.