Orlando Pride add former USWNT legend, Michelle Akers, as assistant coach


Courtesy of Orlando Pride

The Orlando Pride have announced their 2022 coaching staff and a familiar face to the Orlando soccer scene will be joining.

U.S. women’s national team legend Michelle Akers will join new head coach Amanda Cromwell‘s coaching staff, alongside former UCLA assistant Sam Greene and current Pride assistant and former Orlando City player Seb Hines.

“I am incredibly excited to be a part of the Orlando Pride and work with my friend and USWNT teammate, Amanda Cromwell, as well as everyone on the staff,” Akers said in a statement. “I can’t wait to do everything I can to develop our players to their highest potential, both on and off the field, while becoming competitive as a team at the highest level in the NWSL. Personally, this is an exciting opportunity for me, one I’ve always wanted to explore, so when Amanda called and asked me to be on staff I immediately said ‘Yes! I am in.’ There’s a lot of good memories and old friends in Orlando; I’m looking forward to reconnecting and making new ones.”

Akers has deep roots in Orlando soccer throughout her lifetime. Not only is the field the Pride train on dedicated to Akers, but the USWNT legend played for UCF from 1985-1988, becoming the best player in program history. She also served as an assistant under Cromwell when she took over at UCF in the late ’90s.

Following her playing days in Orlando, Akers made her name becoming a two-time FIFA World Cup champion with the United States, winning in 1991 and 1999. She had 103 goals in 153 appearances with the U.S. team until her retirement in 2000.

Greene comes to Orlando after nine seasons with Cromwell at UCLA, joining her staff in 2013. According to the Pride’s press release, Greene will be Cromwell’s first assistant and will work primarily as an offensive strategist, game analyst, and talent acquisition advisor.

Finally, longtime Pride assistant coach Seb Hines will continue to be part of the Pride’s coaching staff.

Hines, who played for Orlando City from 2015-17, joined the Pride in 2018 as a volunteer assistant coach under Tom Sermanni but became officially part of the staff in 2020. Since then, he has served under Sermanni, Marc Skinner, and interim Pride coach Becky Burleigh, who took over midway through last season.

The goalkeeper coach position is still yet to be filled but sources say the club has someone in mind for the job and will announce the position soon.

Pride trade Taylor Kornieck and rights to Emily van Egmond to San Diego

Yesterday the Pride traded the rights to midfielder Taylor Kornieck and the rights to Emily van Egmond to the San Diego Wave FC for $125,000 in Allocation Money and a natural 2024 NWSL Draft Second Round selection.

“We would like to thank Taylor and Emily for their invaluable time with the club and wish them luck as they embark on a new opportunity that aligns with their personal goals and circumstances,” Pride General Manager Ian Fleming said in a club press release. “Our recruitment processes for 2022 and beyond continue, and the assets we’ve acquired will allow us additional flexibility in building a squad capable of sustained success in our league.”

Kornieck was drafted by the Pride in the 2020 NWSL Draft with the 3rd overall pick. In the only season she played for Orlando, she made 26 appearances with 17 starts, recording three goals and three assists.

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