Julie Ertz has been the face of the Chicago Red Stars nearly as long as the club has existed. Now for the first time in her professional career, she will represent a different club.
Ertz was traded from Chicago to the NWSL expansion side Angel City FC earlier this month, as the team moves closer to the start of its inaugural season. While she has yet to formally sign her new contract, maintaining a pending status, Ertz is eager to kick off this new champter.
"Anytime somebody believes that you could be helpful and an impact on their team, it's a huge honor, and anyone that thinks obviously that you can come and be helpful is huge,” Ertz said in an interview with Insider. "I'm excited for the new franchise for what they've already accomplished, what they want to [do], and their plans to do that,"
One major benefit for Ertz in her move out to the west coast is her proximity to family in her home state of Arizona.
"For my entire career, I haven't really been able to see or share moments or even holidays with [my family]," Ertz said. "Coming back to where you're from, that completely is where my heart is. I feel like everyone feels like that. Where you grow up is just a piece of you."
Ertz is not the only major addition Angel City FC made ahead of its first NWSL season. The team made Ertz’s USWNT teammate Christen Press its first signing in August, and brought her Red Stars teammate Sarah Gorden in via trade.
Angel City FC founding investor and former USWNT captain Julie Foudy was “thrilled” with the move to acquire Ertz.
"I'm not surprised that Julie Foudy would be incredibly excited, especially with the incredible forward that Press is and the incredible defender that Sarah [Gorden] is," Ertz said. "Each one of them is incredible. And obviously [Angel City is] at a great start for that."
Ertz is set to make her Angel City FC debut when the Challenge Cup kicks off on March 19th, 2022.