Last week, the Thorns announced their decision to waive forward Mallory Weber. Weber, 25, was a member of the Portland’s 2016 NWSL Shield winning squad, and her regular season contributions helped the Thorns to the playoffs in the 2017 and 2018 seasons.
Weber made 45 appearances for Portland since her acquisition in 2016. While listed as an attacker, she’s played everywhere from striker to outside back and — while lacking high scoring or assist numbers — her composure and versatility have proved valuable in her time with the Thorns.
After being drafted 14th overall by the Western New York Flash in 2016, Weber was traded to Portland. She made an immediate impression, earning time for the Thorns in their first four games of the season. In her NWSL debut against the Orlando Pride, she worked to make her presence known, showing well for Portland in moments such as this takeaway from Steph Catley (though the cross that followed was unfortunately blocked):
Weber built on her early minutes and continued to put together strong performances for the Thorns. She spent significant time at outside back when Portland was missing players for international duty. Weber played 699 minutes for the Thorns in 2016, making seven starts. Although she didn’t record any goals on the season, she did see a couple of good chances:
In 2017, Weber continued to be a solid depth player for the Thorns, generally playing in the attack over her 17 appearances. She showcased her skill on the ball, highlighted by this spin to beat the Spirit defender and get a cross off to Savannah Jordan:
Weber also got a couple looks on goal, recording three shots on target on the season. Here, she settles the ball and takes a long-range strike:
She found the back of the net against Washington on July 22. Ashleigh Sykes beats her defender and crosses the ball to Weber, who gets on the end of it:
Early last season, Weber stepped up in Portland’s attack, making nine starts in her 14 appearances. She had success connecting passes in the offensive half, feeding balls into her teammates and creating chances. Here, she does well to hold the far post run on Ellie Carpenter’s cross and get on the end of an Alyssa Naeher deflection. She hits a good ball back to Ana Maria Crnogorcevic, who is unmarked in front of goal:
Despite not scoring any goals in 2018, Weber wasn’t without a couple good looks. She recorded five shots on the season, including this play against the Reign. Weber picks up a poor ball from Kristen McNabb and dribbles through Seattle’s backline, getting off a solid left-footed shot that almost puts Portland on the scoresheet:
Weber was picked up off the waiver wire by the Utah Royals. She is expected to fill in for the injured Taylor Lytle.
The Stumptown Footy staff wishes Weber (and her dog, Meeko) luck as she embarks in the next stage of her career.