The Orlando Pride announced this afternoon the transfer of midfielder Emily van Egmond to Newcastle Jets FC of Australia’s Liberty A-League. The 28-year-old Australian’s NWSL contract with the Pride expires on Dec. 31.
Van Egmond originally joined the Pride in 2018, playing with the team through the 2019 season. After the global pandemic cancelled the 2020 NWSL, the midfielder went on loan to West Ham United in England, eventually signing permanently with the club.
On Oct. 7, the Pride signed van Egmond for the remainder of the 2021 NWSL season. The signing was meant to be a boost to the Pride’s midfield in an effort to reach the postseason. Van Egmond came off the bench in the team’s final two games of the season, playing 59 minutes as the Pride’s playoff push fell short. Her contract expires at the end of the calendar year.
Playing in part of three seasons with the Pride, van Egmond has made 27 appearances (19 starts) and recorded 1,785 minutes. She has two assists and has been booked three times in those appearances.
The transfer allows van Egmond to join Newcastle immediately and the Pride will retain her NWSL playing rights. Van Egmond made her debut for Newcastle when she was 15 years old and this will be her fifth stint with her hometown side over the course of her career. She last played for Newcastle in 2018 as she helped her team finish near the top of the league table.
What It Means for Orlando
Van Egmond’s contract was set to expire on Dec. 31 so they were going to have to re-sign the midfielder either way. Additionally, the regular season for the Australian league formerly known as the W-League currently runs from the first week of December to the first week of March, so it doesn’t interfere with the NWSL season.
The Pride could still re-sign van Egmond for the 2022 NWSL season if they feel it’s a good fit. While it’s possible that van Egmond could return in 2022, it’s unknown how likely that is with the Pride in the middle of a rebuilding project and the addition of Amanda Cromwell as the club’s new head coach.