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Ashlyn Harris and Ali Krieger reflect on 2022 NWSL season

The 2022 NWSL campaign saw figures Ali Krieger and Ashlyn Harris undergo several new challenges. 

In a shocking move just months shy of the new season, NJ/NY Gotham FC acquired the defender and goalkeeper duo from the Orlando Pride in exchange for a 2022 NWSL Draft first-round selection, a 2023 NWSL Draft natural third-round pick and $50,000 in Allocation Money. 

The two departed the Florida team after recording over 80 appearances each, ready to take on a new adventure in New York. 

“At some point you have to put your career in your own hands. I think everyone hits their max, at one point. I was there for seven years, and I feel like at some point you’re trying to push an organization to go one way, and if they continue to go in a different direction, you kind of put your hand up. You can’t make all the changes, especially when you are a player. Sometimes you just want to show up and do your job, and that is to play, and all the business side shouldn’t be something that you have to constantly fight for,” Harris explained. 

“We went in different directions. I wanted something different for the club, my home club, the team I grew up playing for. And constantly, each year, I was being let down. Sometimes you just have to take a leap of faith to somewhere new. New York City was so attractive. It was a good move for me, for our family.”

But the season did not go as planned. NJ/NY Gotham FC concluded the campaign in last place on the table, with just 13 points in 22 games and a record of 4W-17L-1D, while Harris watched from the sidelines after suffering a knee injury. 

The lack of consistency on the field propelled a roster overhaul,  seeing the departure of head coach Scott Parkinson, inclusion of interim manager Hue Menzies and several new targets for the offseason. 

Ali Krieger did not hold back when reflecting on the previous year, labeling it “one of the toughest” of her career. 

“I think it’s been one of the toughest years of our career. Coming in last place is definitely new to us, and foreign to us and how we expected the season to go. We obviously hold a high standard, and are addicted to winning, that’s what we are used to. But it was definitely humbling. We know there’s a lot of work that needs to be done, and we’re definitely willing to stick it through, roll our sleeves up and keep it pushing,” Ali Krieger said. 

“We were very vulnerable throughout the year, and we were hiding how tough it was but there’s a lot of work that still needs to be done and we’re willing to help in any way that we can to make this club and the NWSL one of the best in the world. That is our goal now. We have a new opportunity to be better than we were this past season for the next year. So, we’re excited about that.”

With months to go until the 2023 NWSL, Gotham FC has begun acquiring new figures to help the team improve. The team announced former Houston Dash leader Juan Carlos Amoros as their new head coach, while adding other prominent figures to leadership roles. 

“Team officials, alongside Harris and Krieger, have proved their commitment to improving Gotham to be among the best.” 

“It’s a club that’s really investing in becoming a global brand, and we want to be a part of that. We don’t want to be charitable, ‘we want to stay above water,’ no. Gotham has the ability to become a multi-million dollar business and we want to help it get there. That’s what we are excited about as well. Investing in women, incredible things can happen. We are seeing it worldwide right now,” said Harris. 

“We want to continue to grow that and be a part of that.”

In partnership with P&G and Align Probiotics.

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