The Orlando Pride announced today the signing of defender Kylie Strom to a two-year deal with an option for an additional year. Strom, 29, arrives in Orlando from Atletico Madrid after spending almost two years in the premier Spanish league. She joined Atleti in August 2019 and has made 29 appearances, scoring two goals and playing in the UEFA Women’s Champions League.
“Kylie is a player who will give us an added threat down the left side of the pitch and help us push toward our goals both this year and beyond,” Orlando Pride General Manager Ian Fleming said in a club press release. “We’ve watched her development during her time in Europe with a keen interest and her experience in the Champions League, as well as domestically in the Czech Republic and Spain, will help her settle into the rigors of the NWSL. We know she’s excited to be back stateside and in Orlando, and we’re excited to have her become a member of the Pride.”
Before joining Atletico Madrid, Strom played two years with Sparta Prague, where she scored 19 times in 36 appearances across two seasons with the Czech side, which she helped win a first-division title and the Czech Women’s Cup. Strom was named MVP of the Cup final in hir first season and helped Sparta Prague win both trophies again in her second year with the club.
“I’ve been abroad for four years now — two years at Sparta and then two years at Atletico Madrid recently — and it was time to come home, play in front of my family and friends, be back in the United States, and of course Orlando is an incredible team,” Strom said. “Just playing in the stadium in front of fans is going to be an absolutely incredible experience. I’ve heard such good things about this club. I’m super excited and honored to be a part of it. I’m going to give everything for this team and I can’t wait to get out there.”
The Endicott, NY native returns to the NWSL after playing for the Boston Breakers in 2016-2017, where she made seven appearances after signing in August of 2016. Strom played collegiate soccer at Boston University from 2010-2013, making 86 appearances for the Terriers, scoring 14 goals and earning NSCAA All-Region, All-Patriot League, Patriot League All-Tournament Team and America East All-Rookie Team honors at BU.
Internationally, Strom earned a call-up to the U.S. U-23 Women’s National Team camp in 2014.
What It Means for Orlando
Strom’s signing adds some depth on defense and provides some cover on the left side of the back line. Fleming’s remarks indicate she could be slotted in for Courtney Petersen, who was named to the NWSL Team of the Month in June. Strom’s presence in that spot would allow some flexibility. Orlando’s attack looks a little thin with some players on Olympic duty and Petersen, if needed, could play more of a left wing role.
The commitment to a multi-year deal means Fleming and Marc Skinner believe this is a player who can contribute. It’s never a bad thing to add depth to the back line and Strom has Champions League-level experience. That can only be a good thing for the Pride.