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February 15, 2019

Five Red Star players named to W-League Team of the Season

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Chicago boasts four players in the Starting XI and one on the bench

CHICAGO — Ahead of tonight’s Grand Final between Perth Gloy and Sydney FC (11:30 pm C.T. on ESPN+) the Professional Footballers of Australia (PFA) announced the Team of the Season for the 2019 Westfield W-League campaign. Chicago Red Stars players Sam Kerr, Nikki Stanton, Katie Naughton, and Yuki Nagasato made the starting eleven, with Danielle Colaprico named to the squad’s bench.

Kerr was the obvious choice in the striker position. Fresh off winning her second-consecutive Golden Boot for the National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) in Chicago, the Aussie won the award in the W-League for the 2019 campaign. In 11 regular season games, Kerr scored 13 goals, including four multi-goal games and a hat-trick against Western Sydney Wanderers. With the hat-trick she became the all-time leading goal scorer in the W-League, holding that honor in the leagues of her native Australia and the NWSL. Kerr scored another hat-trick against Premiere winner Melbourne Victory in the semi-finals, making her the first player to do so in a Grand Finals Series.

Kerr is joined by Perth Glory teammates Nikki Stanton and Katie Naughton on the team. Stanton made 11 appearances this season, becoming the veteran leader of a young Perth midfield. She led the team in tackles won with 33 with a 63% tackle success rate and was efficiently distributing the ball with a 78% passing accuracy. Her performances have helped Perth Glory reach their second Grand Final in three years.

In her debut season with Perth, Naughton started in all 13 games for the team, playing an impressive 12,000 minutes on the season. Defensively, she had a 78% tackle success rate with 51 clearances and 17 interceptions. Naughton also managed to get on the scoresheet, scoring a goal against Western Sydney Wanderers in Round 13.

Nagasato joined the Brisbane Roar for her maiden season in the W-Leauge and immediately became their key offensive threat. Making 11 starts for the team, she ranked second in goals scored with four and added two assists. Her consistency in the passing game didn’t drop in Australia, as she completed 373 passes with a passing accuracy of 76%.

Colaprico’s season was shorter than her Red Stars teammates due to international duty with the U.S. Women’s National Team, but that didn’t stop her from placing in the top 10 for both assists and chances created in the W-League. One of her three assists came in last week’s semi-final, helping Sydney FC reach the Grand Final for the second-consecutive season. Colaprico’s 27 chances created placed her fifth overall in the W-League despite playing in three fewer appearances than the three players above her and two fewer than Kerr, who leads the league in the statistical category. Colaprico also scored a goal this season against her former team, Adelaide United.

All five Red Stars players played in the Grand Finals Series this season, with four players featured in tonight’s Grand Final. Fans can watch Kerr, Stanton, Naughton, and Mautz against Colaprico tonight at 11:30 pm C.T. on ESPN+.


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