Morgan Brian and Olympique Lyonnais have parted ways just five months into her 2.5 year contract, Kieran Thievam at The Equalizer is reporting. Brian originally signed with Lyon at the beginning of 2018, with the deal expected to run through June 30, 2020. Now Brian will return to the United States, where the Chicago Red Stars hold her rights after acquiring them in a trade with the Houston Dash.
Brian spent a lot of her 2017 season with the Dash managing an injury, never quite getting a full 90. Fans speculated that the club was mismanaging her health, and that the move to Chicago might help her finally get to 100%. But the return to regular full 90’s never materialized in France with Lyon; Brian played four games for them and didn’t even get to dress for their Champions League final against Wolfsburg. She’s been on and off the bench mostly for the national team as well, last playing a full 90 on March 4 against France during She Believes. Brian faded out over the course of that game and has only been having 15-to-30 minute spells since. Lyon head coach Reynald Pedros told Equalizer that Brian has been injured on and off during her time with Lyon as all.
It’s honestly a shame that Brian hasn’t found a more permanent place to get healthy and get solid minutes. At her best, she’s a savvy playmaker, a good pass completionist, who can also drop into a more holding role if necessary. She can be a quiet difference-maker at both the club and country level - if only she can make that injury rehab stick.
Still, sixth-place Chicago could probably use her, even for 30 minutes at a time, and she’s listed on the latest USWNT roster for their two upcoming friendlies against China. Will Brian actually get minutes on the field, or is she more being evaluated in a camp environment? We can only hope for the best.