PORTLAND, Ore. – Portland Thorns FC today announced that the club has acquired goalkeeper Abby Smith and $150,000 in allocation money from KC NWSL in exchange for goalkeeper Adrianna Franch.
“We are grateful to AD for all her contributions to this club. She has been a critical part of our team’s success since her arrival not only on the field in helping us win a championship, but also off the field with her incredible commitment and passion for this community and city,” said Gavin Wilkinson, Thorns FC general manager and president of soccer. “In speaking with AD we came to the collective decision that the opportunity she has in Kansas City makes sense for both sides and we wish her all the best.”
Franch, 30, arrived in Portland ahead of the 2016 season after she was acquired by the club in a trade with the Orlando Pride. From 2016-21 with Thorns FC, Franch made 65 appearances (all starts), posting a 0.95 goals-against average and 26 shutouts while recording 198 saves. With Portland, Franch was named NWSL Goalkeeper of the Year in 2017 and 2018 and helped guide the club to an NWSL Shield in 2016, the 2017 NWSL Championship, and a second appearance in the title game in 2018.
A native of Salina, Kan., Franch began her NWSL career in 2013 with the Western New York Flash and was the sixth overall pick in the league’s inaugural NWSL College Draft out of Oklahoma State. She was unavailable during the 2014 NWSL season due to a knee injury and played for Norwegian side Avaldsnes IL in 2015 before returning to the NWSL.
At the international level, Franch won the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup with the U.S. Women’s National Team. She was named to her first Olympic roster for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, helping the USWNT win the bronze medal. Franch has made eight appearances for the United States at the senior level.
“AD has consistently been a key player and an important leader for us,” said Thorns FC head coach Mark Parsons. “She has grown with this team throughout its most successful years and we are all extremely grateful for her commitment to this club and the Portland community. I look forward to welcoming Abby to our team and seeing her develop within our environment.”
Originally drafted by the Boston Breakers in the 2016 NWSL College Draft, Smith, 27, who was born in Portland and grew up in Plano, Texas, has played 44 regular-season games across five seasons in the NWSL with Boston, Utah Royals FC and KC NWSL. During the 2016 and 2017 seasons with the Breakers, she logged 21 appearances. From 2018-20, Smith appeared in 17 games with Utah, while also making appearances in the 2020 NWSL Challenge Cup and Fall Series. With KC NWSL this regular season, Smith made six starts.
Birthdate: Oct. 4, 1993
Hometown: Plano, Texas
Previous Club: KC NWSL
College: University of Texas