We’re just under a year out from the 2021 NWSL Draft, but it’s never too early to look ahead at which players could be selected and jumpstart their professional careers.
This past version saw two players with ties to New England picked, as well as a third who transferred out and enjoyed a prominent career at national powerhouse Stanford. Of the 36 players selected across all nine NWSL clubs, that comes out to just over eight percent of the total picks, largely given the strength of Division 1 soccer elsewhere.
The players selected, more often than not, are seniors whose collegiate careers have been fast-tracked to graduate in three-and-a-half years. There are exceptions, such as Sophia Smith (Stanford) and Ashley Sanchez (UCLA), non-seniors who were top-five picks in 2020.
As those trends unfold, here’s our look at 11 NWSL Draft prospects either from New England or playing at schools in the region. They’ll all be seniors next year, and a professional career could be in the cards domestically or overseas.