FC Kansas City continued to round out their roster on Thursday when they chose six players in the NWSL Supplemental draft. The Blues added some depth at forward and defense, got their quality backup keeper and took a risk that could really pay off.
“Overall, very excited about the draft,” FC Kansas City head coach Vlatko Andonovski stated. “We took some of the girls that were very high on our list and the fact that we got another high quality goalkeeper just made the situation complete for us.”
In the first round FC Kansas City selected Courtney Jones, a forward/defender that gives depth on both lines. Jones won two NCAA National Championships with North Carolina.
FC Kansas selected Bianca Henninger in the second round. Henninger is a keeper from Santa Clara that has played with the U.S. U-20 and U-23 teams, winning the Gold Glove at the U-20 World Cup. She should be a great challenger to push expected starter Barnhart.
Merritt Mathias was selected in the third round. Mathias played for Texas A&M and is a forward that can create as well as score.
The next two picks are a gamble and may pay off if either one plays. FC Kansas City selected Casey Nogueira in the fourth round and Tina DiMartino in the fifth. Both players are experienced and would bring a lot to the team but there is a lot of uncertainty about their intention to play. There were reports shortly after the draft that DiMartino was saying she would not play.
Nogueira was rumored to be not playing as well but she has not communicated her intentions publically since the draft. FC Kansas City thinks there is a good chance she will play.
In either case the risk is outweighed by the reward. “It was a fourth round pick and it was just hard for us to pass up a player like Casey Nogueira,” Coach Andonovski explained. “She resides in Dallas and being that we are the closest one to Dallas, who knows she may decide to play. It was just a case of us risking the pick and we will know more in the next few days and then it is up to our general manager.”
The sixth pick in the draft saw defender Casey Berrier selected. Berrier is from the St. Louis area like fellow FC Kansas City defender Becky Sauerbrunn. In 2012, Berrier played with Finnish team PK-35. They won the league and advanced to the UEFA Women’s Champions League.
“We got exactly what we wanted in the first three rounds and we did what we planned in the last couple rounds,” Coach Andonovski observed. “Now it is on the general manager to do his thing.”