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January 12, 2024

2024 NWSL Draft

The Chicago Red Stars head down to Anaheim, California for the 2024 NWSL Draft presented by Ally on Friday, January 12. Head Coach Lorne Donaldson and his staff will be choosing from a pool of incredibly talented college players looking to make the next step in their careers to build out the Red Stars’ 2024 roster. Draft coverage begins at 5 p.m. PT/ 7 p.m. CT and will be broadcast on ION and streamed on ION Plus. This page will also be updated as the club makes its picks and welcomes in a new batch of Red Stars.

 

Chicago Red Stars close out the 2024 NWSL Draft with the selection of Celia Gaynor

Celia Gaynor 

Michigan State University 

Defender 

Round 4, Pick 3 

 

Celia Gaynor is a defender from Michigan State University. In 2023, Gaynor proved to be a top defender in the Big Ten, earning First-Team All-Big Ten honors. She consistently played 90 minutes in 10 contests in 2023 and contributed in nine shutouts. In her time as a Spartan, she scored 5 goals and started in 42 of 43 matches played at MSU. This Midwest defender played three years of her collegiate career at Butler University. 

 

Chicago Red Stars Select Bea Franklin

Bea Franklin 

University of Arkansas 

Forward, Midfielder, Defender 

Round 3, Pick 13 

 

Bea Franklin is a versatile midfielder hailing from the University of Arkansas where she completed her final season as a Razorback clinching the title of SEC Midfielder of the Year. Franklin also led her team in goals (9), assists (9) and points (27) in 2023. Eleven of her 15 career goals with Arkansas have been headers, demonstrating her defensive skills and offensive tenacity. Prior to Arkansas, Franklin started her collegiate career at Notre Dame. 

 

Chicago Red Stars Select Hannah Anderson in the Third Round

Hannah Anderson 

Texas Tech University 

Defender 

Round 3, Pick 3 

 

Hannah Anderson is a defender from Texas Tech University. Over her career as a Red Raider, Anderson has proven to be a force on the field and cemented her status as the best center back in the Big 12 Conference and the nation. In the same season, the defender played and started in all 23 contests and recorded 2,041 minutes, on top of a career-best five goals and two assists. The Texas native finished out her 2023 senior season with notable honors such as Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year, United Soccer Coaches Association First Team All-American, First Team All-Midwest, First Team All-Big 12, and more. 

 

Chicago Red Stars Trade 17th Overall Pick in NWSL Draft 

The Chicago Red Stars have traded the 17th overall pick in the 2024 National Women’s Soccer League Draft to the Seattle Reign. In exchange the club receives $125,000 in allocation money.

 

Chicago Red Stars Select Jameese Joseph with the 15th Overall Pick 

Jameese Joseph 

North Carolina State University 

Forward & Midfielder 

Round 2, Pick 1 

 

Jameese Joseph is a midfielder and forward from North Carolina State University. The east coast native appeared and started in all 17 matches in the 2023 season recording three goals and one assist. Joseph finished her NC State career ranked eighth in stars in program history with 87 and sixth in shots with 237. She completed her collegiate career with 24 goals, 10 assists and 58 points and earned Third Team All-ACC honors in her senior year. Before joining NC State, Joseph was called up to the US Women’s Youth National Team camp in 2016.

 

Chicago Red Stars Select Leilanni Nesbeth in First Round of 2024 NWSL Draft

Leilanni Nesbeth 

Florida State University 

Midfielder 

Round 1, Pick 10 

 

Leilanni Nesbeth is a midfielder from Florida State University (FSU). As a Seminole in 2023, Nesbeth started in 21 games, scored two goals with five assists in 1,617 minutes of play. She is recognized as a leader in the midfield, helping FSU record 14 shutouts in 23 games. 

Throughout her career at FSU, she earned impressive accolades such as National Champion (2021, 2023), NCAA Tournament All-Tournament Team (2023), All-ACC Second Team (2022, 2023). 

Prior to joining Florida State, Nesbeth registered 4 caps for the Bermuda women’s national team where she scored 5 goals.  

 

Chicago Red Stars Receive 10th Overall Pick From North Carolina Courage 

The Chicago Red Stars have received the 10th overall pick in the 2024 National Women’s Soccer League Draft from the North Carolina Courage in exchange for $175,000 in allocation money.  

The Red Stars now have the 10th, 15th, 17th, 31st and 45th overall picks in tonight’s draft.

 

Chicago Red Stars Trade Defender Arin Wright to Racing Louisville FC 

The Chicago Red Stars have traded long-time Red Star, Arin Wright, to Racing Louisville FC for the 15th overall pick in the 2024 National Women’s Soccer League Draft and $125,000 in allocation money. The veteran defender returns to her home state of Kentucky.   

Wright was drafted by the Chicago Red Stars in the first round of the 2015 draft. Across nine seasons with the Red Stars, Wright has played in 173 matches, with 161 starts and scored three goals with 12 assists across all competitions. This past season Wright made her 141st regular-season start with the club, setting a new record for most starts in club history. Wright also served as team captain in 2023 while goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher was away from the team.  

This trade comes following a request from Wright to return to her home state and be closer to family. The Chicago Red Stars extend their deepest thanks to Arin for her years of service to the club and wish her the best in Louisville and the rest of her career.

 

Chicago Makes Trade with Washington Spirit

The Chicago Red Stars have traded the third overall pick in the 2024 National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) Draft to the Washington Spirit in exchange for stand-out defender Sam Staab.  

The 26-year-old Staab was a finalist for the NWSL’s 2023 Defender of Year award. Staab is also a three-time NWSL Ironwoman having played every available regular-season minute for the third time in her career. Early last season, Staab set a new league record for most consecutive regular-season starts after passing fellow Spirit teammate Amber Brooks whose previous record was 72 consecutive starts.  

The San Diego native earned Best XI of the month honors in March, April and May of last season and has now earned Best XI of the month five times in her career.  

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