Dzsenifer Marozsán and Sarah Bouhaddi set to join OL Reign on loan this season
OL Reign and the rest of the NWSL are only days away from the majority of their players heading to pre-season training camp and kicking off the 2021 season, which will see the league play a second edition of the NWSL Challenge Cup in April before a full return to the NWSL regular season, which is currently slated to kick off in mid-May.
News of roster transactions has calmed down lately for OL Reign, but fans are anxiously awaiting who from parent club Olympique Lyonnais will come to the United States in the not-so-distant future. Back in December, amid having to respond to comments from minority shareholder Tony Parker in an interview about a possible future OL Reign relocation, the club have indicated that two OL players will join the club for the 2021 season.
When Ride of the Valkyries recently spoke with OL President Reign Bill Predmore, he couldn’t yet announce which OL players might come, but he clarified that such a loan would only take place. ‘after the end of Division 1 2020-21. Women’s season and UEFA Women’s Champions League tournament, currently scheduled to end in mid-May.
Predmore further noted that the team expects to have the necessary international slots for these moves – one of the five international slots held by the team for 2021 is already open, and the team anticipates that Quinn will be assigned by Canada Soccer for the coming season, release another. Two more international places could open soon, with Predmore revealing that midfielder Rosie White and full-back Celia Jimenez Delgado are each in the process of getting green cards.
Today, during a press conference where OL unveiled their latest recruit, USWNT striker / midfielder Catarina Macario, OL Groupe president Jean-Michel Aulas gave very clear on the OL players likely to come to Tacoma later this year.
Jean-Michel Aulas: “Players (from@OLfeminin ) will go next year (to @OLReign ) to go and win the title in the USA. “Perhaps Bouhaddi, Marozsan or Renard according to the Lyon president. Not the three, but probably two of them.
– Syanie Dalmat (@SyaneDalmat) 25 January 2021
Roughly translated, Aulas suggests goalkeeper Sarah Bouhaddi, midfielder Dzsenifer Marozsán and / or defender Wendie Renard could be loaned to OL Reign this season. He clarified that it probably wouldn’t be all three, but probably two of them. He further stated that OL intend to sign all three for new long-term agreements, and each contract will have a clause giving the player the opportunity to spend a year with the reign.
Ride of the Walkyries has separately confirmed to a source close to OL that the two players most likely to come are Marozsán and Bouhaddi. The pair was almost confirmed to join Utah Royals FC in early 2020, but the movements were canceled at the last minute due to the Covid-19 pandemic, much like everything else that looked like a sports season and normal operations.
While the duo would be brand new to the club and the league, they already have familiar faces to help them settle into their new surroundings – Megan Rapinoe spent parts of 2013 and 2014 with Bouhaddi in Lyon, and Jess Fishlock had a loan. with the German team of 1. FFC Frankfurt after the 2014 NWSL season where she played alongside Marozsán, in addition to her stint with the pair at OL during their 2018-19 campaign. OL head coach Reign Farid Benstiti also briefly coached Bouhaddi when the keeper first signed with Lyon in 2009.
It’s good to say that we don’t know at the moment and we won’t know until they play. Despite all the success they have had in Lyon, playing in the NWSL is still a big adjustment. Their individual talent should always be able to flourish in the United States, but this is where having a team with more than a few league veterans as they build the youth movement is invaluable. Marozsán and Bouhaddi would undoubtedly seek the advice of veterans like Fishlock, Rapinoe, Lauren Barnes, Allie Long, Kristen McNabb and Steph Cox to make themselves comfortable.
Their arrival will be the first example of the connection between OL Reign and Lyon by bringing players to Cheney Stadium, and obviously its success will be measured by what the team achieves on the pitch for this season and beyond. At the end of the day, two big names in women’s football arrive at the NWSL and it’s a cause for excitement.