The Boston Breakers have waived Norwegian international Emilie Haavi.
According to a statement released by the club, Haavi “struggled to adjust to life in America and was homesick.”
Haavi played 458 minutes with five starts in seven games for the Breakers and signed in the 2016 offseason as part of Matt Beard’s plans to revamp the roster and bring more options to the attack.
The Haavi waiver is a bit odd in that there’s really not much time left in the NWSL season. The Boston Breakers are not particularly playoff contenders and there are seven games left for them in the season, the last one being September 30. Perhaps Haavi simply was that homesick.
In that case this isn’t the first time Beard has worked something out in order to accommodate a player struggling off the field; the Breakers also traded McCall Zerboni to the WNY Flash when she was considering retirement in order to be closer to her fiance. “It gets to the point where you've got to think about the person's life,” Beard said of the Zerboni decision and that would seem to apply here as well.
Haavi’s ability to settle in with the club may have been interrupted by the Euros, as she was called up to the Norwegian women’s national team and was gone for several weeks in the midseason. When asked how long Haavi had been considering leaving, the team referred to the press release. “As much as we wanted her to stay, we mutually agreed it was best for her to return home to Norway,” said head coach Matt Beard in that release.
According to NWSL roster rules, clubs may waive players “based on performance” at any time before the roster freeze date of Tuesday, August 29, at which point a player may not be waived between then and the NWSL championship.
According to a team spokesperson, the Breakers do not have any immediate plans to replace Haavi and currently carry 19 players on their roster. Options to pick up the load on the left wing include Tiffany Weimer, who has seen more playing time recently, and possibly Adriana Leon, who often shifts from right to left to during a game. Perhaps the team will even consider bringing up draft pick Hayley Dowd, who is currently playing with the Breakers reserves, although at the moment the real need is for healthy defenders.
The Breakers’ next game is Wednesday, August 16 at 7:30 PM ET when they take on the Houston Dash at Jordan Field.