Utah Royals FC Acquires Elizabeth Ball From Portland For Becky Sauerbrunn
SANDY, Utah – Utah Royals FC announced that they have acquired defender Elizabeth Ball from Portland Thorns FC in exchange for defender Becky Sauerbrunn.
Utah will also receive $100,000 in allocation money from Portland and could receive additional money if future conditions are met.
This is the first time that allocation money has been used. Utah became the first team to use the money as a trade mechanism by sending $60,000 to Chicago Red Stars in exchange for the 8th overall pick in the 2020 NWSL Draft. Tuesday is the first time that allocation money has been traded in exchange for a player.
“We are so thankful for her contributions as part of the team and community, and we are happy we can grant her request to be home in a way that allows us to utilize resources in other avenues to better the team,” General Manager Stephanie Lee said.
Ball has made 23 appearances for Portland in her two-year professional career, 16 of which were made during her second season. She was undrafted in the 2019 NWSL College Draft but received a preseason invite before signing a contract with the Thorns.
— Utah Royals FC (@UtahRoyalsFC) March 3, 2020
“Elizabeth offers us real defending adaptability and options,” Head Coach Craig Harrington said. “She has shown in the past that she can play a variety of positions and her versatility allows us to be flexible to a lot of formations.”
Saerbrunn became the first-ever signing for Utah Royals FC when she came to the club in December 2017. She was quickly named captain of the team, a role in which she served for the past two seasons. During her time with the Royals, Sauerbrunn has scored one goal in 24 appearances and help the club to 13 clean sheets. She was named the 2019 National Women’s Soccer League Defender of the Year.