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Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Washington Spirit players show ‘full support’ over dismissal of head coach Kris Ward

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Following the Washington Spirit’s 2-2 draw against the Houston Dynamo, co-captain Andi Sullivan used the press conference to speak on behalf of the team about the dismissal of head coach Kris Ward.

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“We would like to start off with a statement on behalf of the players. Firstly, we are frustrated that this is necessary given our history. Secondly, we are angered by Kris Ward’s answers in the piece by The Athletic. We know the idiom that there are two sides to every story, but that is simply not the case in this scenario,” she said.

“We know his interview to be a completely inaccurate recollection of a serious situation and furthermore the apology offered to us last Friday demonstrates a misalignment in his words and actions towards the team. The players fully support the decision of the club to relieve him of his duties as head coach and we have every intention of cooperating in a proper course of action as it relates to circumstances like this one. We will no longer take any questions regarding his dismissal or make any further comments on it at this time. We are focused on our current performances and the rest of our season and moving forward as a group.”

The club provided no further explanation into his dismissal, simply announcing on Twitter that Ward had been “relieved of his duties.” Ward then took to The Athletic to explain his point of view, before ultimately apologizing for the situation.

“This is the first time where I just kind of used volume instead of pulling a player aside by myself and going through it,” Ward said, admitting he would handle the situation differently given the opportunity.

But the matter has yet to be resolved. The Washington Spirit and NWSL have yet to announce whether an investigation into the matter will be conducted.

Ward’s dismissal also came after a string of negative results that saw the Washington Spirit slide to 11th on the table with just 13 points in 17 games. The team has yet to win since their season opener on May 1, going on a 16-winless streak that includes 10 draws and six losses.

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