National Sports

Alyssa Thompson Selected for Angel City F.C

By Ella Marrufo

Sports Editor

On Jan. 12, Angel City Football Club (FC) selected Alyssa Thompson — high school senior, soccer phenom, and No. 1 Draft Pick — for the National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL). Angel City’s general manager Angela Hucles described Thompson, saying, “She’s a player who can make an immediate impact, but she’s also young and can develop and look to be a player that we’re building a future off of, too.”

As an 18-year-old senior enrolled at Harvard-Westlake, a college preparatory school in Los Angeles, Thompson became the first ever player drafted straight out of high school. She was also the first high school player to sign a multi-year partnership with Nike in 2022, along with her sister, Giselle. The decision to join Angel City FC required her to revoke her college eligibility and previous commitment to play soccer at Stanford University on scholarship. Thompson noted that her “heart was beating so fast” during the Draft Pick, which she watched on TV surrounded by friends and family, but that she was mostly excited for the future.  

Thompson has been an extremely desirable player for several years now after she joined the Major League Soccer academy boys’ club, Total Futbol Academy, in 2020 and joined the US Women’s National Team (USWNT) in 2022. Thompson credits much of her current success to playing at Total Futbol Academy, stating that “it was super fast-paced and the [boys were] super physical as well.” Last year, she was a substitute on two different occasions for the National Team against England and Spain at only 17 years old, making her the youngest ever call-up for the USWNT and adding to her multitudes of accolades. 

 Since the draft, Thompson received words of encouragement and praise from Angel City coach, Frey Coombe. Coombe told The Athletic, “It shows a massive intent by the club in terms of being aggressive to trade up and get the No. 1 pick…We couldn’t be happier we’re getting a talented player who’s got a massive ceiling and who’s going to be able to make a difference, and obviously getting someone who’s so young and being able to develop the person is huge.” For Angel City which struggled with scoring and overall performance last year, Thompson will be a crucial addition to the team. 

Signing with Angel City — which is based in Los Angeles — was a relief for Thompson, who is a LA native and will be able to remain close to her family and friends. Despite remaining close to home, Thompson admitted, “This was the hardest decision that I’ve ever had to make in my life … There were so many back and forths about it, but in the end, I decided that it was the best for me.”

(Sources: CNN, The Guardian, USA Today, The Athletic)

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