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NWSL faces potential leadership void following Duffy’s departure

NWSL president Amanda Duffy (Credit: NWSL)

The National Women’s Soccer League faces a potential leadership void following confirmation that Amanda Duffy is stepping down as league president.

Duffy is leaving the NWSL on February 15 when she will take up the position of executive vice president of NWSL team Orlando Pride. In her new role, Duffy will head all operations related to the Pride, both front office and technical, reporting directly to Orlando City SC CEO Alex Leitão and representing the Pride on the NWSL Board.

The NWSL is currently going through the process of hiring a commissioner, but it is unclear if one will be appointed by the time of Duffy’s departure. It is also unknown who would lead the league on an interim basis should there be a delay, though NWSL executive committee chair and North Carolina Courage owner Steve Malik would be an obvious candidate.

“It has been an honor and a privilege to be a part of the growth and development of the NWSL,” Duffy said. “The league has made significant strides over the last three years and I look forward to its continued development as the global destination for our world class athletes and passionate fans.

“I have enjoyed a long-standing relationship with the leadership of Orlando City SC for more than a decade, and have watched its rapid growth trajectory into a global brand with admiration and respect,” Duffy added. “As this position came into the club’s plans, and as I learned more about the broader goals of the collective organization, it was clear to me that the club is prepared to invest deeply in the women’s game, and in the Pride specifically.  This investment, combined with the chance to work with Alex’s leadership, a world-class roster, and intensely passionate fans, made the decision to come to Orlando one of tremendous excitement and an immense honor.”

Malik said in a statement: “We thank Amanda for all of her efforts on behalf of the NWSL over the past three years and are pleased that she will continue to play an important part in the league in her new role with the Orlando Pride. We will continue to build upon Amanda’s work of elevating the league’s footprint – competitively and commercially – as the league cements its position as the global leader in women’s soccer.”