The NWSL has authorized all teams to begin Phase Two of the leagues return to play policy starting May 25.
Phase Two permits teams to engage in voluntary “small group training”, which is defined by the NWSL as up to eight players working with a coach or other member of a team’s technical staff.
“Following the advice and counsel of our medical advisors, the NWSL is pleased to be taking the next steps to safely return to competition,” said NWSL Commissioner Lisa Baird.
PRE TRAINING TESTING
As part of the Phase Two protocols, all players must complete a Pre-Training Assessment (PTA) and have a daily symptom and temperature screening prior to entering a team facility. In Small Group Training, clubs are permitted to use weight rooms, training rooms, and meeting rooms. Essential staff authorized in Phase 2 are coaches, athletic trainers, sports scientists, team physicians, and equipment managers.
All players and staff members are required to take both an Antigen polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test and an Antibody (IgG) test prior to being present at any group trainings.
Beginning Saturday, May 30, 2020, teams may progress to Phase Three—Full Team Training—provided that five (5) days of Small Group Training have been completed and doing so is not in violation of applicable state or local restrictions.
Throughout Phases Two and Three, players are required to arrive in their training gear and wear masks when arriving and departing the facility; shared water bottles will not be permitted, and staff will perform a thorough cleaning after each groups’ use of the facilities.
OL REIGN COULD RELOCATE PRACTICE SITES
Although the NWSL has enabled teams to begin Phase Two of its return to play protocol, at this time Washington State and Pierce County guidelines will not permit OL Reign to begin small group training at Cheney Stadium in Tacoma. As a result, OL Reign will travel to a nearby county that is in Phase Two of the Washington State process for reopening businesses. This move will permit OL Reign to train with up to five players and a member of the technical staff.
OL Reign is evaluating plans for moving into NWSL’s Phase Three, which may require the club to train outside Washington State.
“Everybody in the club is excited to finally be back out on the pitch to train, if only in a limited capacity for now,” said OL Reign CEO Bill Predmore. “We are taking things slowly and carefully to ensure that we keep our players, staff, and members of our community safe. We expect to share our plans for Phase Three later this week.”
ABOUT OL REIGN
OL Reign (originally Seattle Reign FC) was established in 2012 as a founding member of the National Women’s Soccer League. The nine-team NWSL is widely considered to be the most competitive women’s professional soccer league in the world. Over its first seven seasons the club twice captured the NWSL Shield while making four appearances in the NWSL postseason. In 2019 the club was acquired by Olympique Lyonnais, one of Europe’s most iconic football clubs. OL Reign plays its home matches at Cheney Stadium in Tacoma, Washington and can be found on the web at olreign.com and on social @olreign.