Nasello signs first professional contract after NWSL fallout

Junior forward Sydny Nasello scored her ninth and tenth goals of the season in USF’s win Thursday. USF ATHLETICS PHOTO

Former USF women’s soccer standout Sydny Nasello signed her first professional contract with Spanish club UD Granadilla Tenerife after her NWSL player rights expired Feb. 1.

The Land O’ Lakes native is under contract until June with an option for two more seasons. The club, commonly known as UDG Tenerife, play in the Primera Divisíon, Spain’s highest tier of women’s soccer.

Nasello was the team’s final signing of the January transfer window in an effort to strengthen the squad for the second half of the season.

UDG Tenerife currently sit in fourth place in the Primera, just one point behind Atletico de Madrid in third. A top-three finish would come with automatic qualification to the UEFA Women’s Champions League for the first time in the club’s history.

In December 2021, Nasello was drafted by Portland Thorns FC before a swift fan backlash to her social media activity clouded her future in the league. Once the NWSL preseason began Feb. 1 with Nasello still not under contract, she was free to seek opportunities abroad.

Nasello spoke publicly for the first time since a draft-day apology tweet on a Jan. 27 episode of the Beckles & Recher show on 95.3 WDAE, reflecting on the consequences of her social media posts.

“I just learned that social media is a scary place,” she said. “Without social media, I’d be a professional athlete in the NWSL right now. So it’s like a dream that was kind of stripped from me just because I have different political beliefs.”

Nasello also mentioned in the interview her ultimate goal is to return stateside to play in the NWSL and is even open to returning to Portland if given the opportunity.