The Orlando Pride posted an announcement on social media today, announcing that head coach Amanda Cromwell and assistant coach Sam Greene have been placed on temporary administrative leave pending an investigation.
This decision came at the recommendation of the National Women’s Soccer League and the NWSLPA, which has been conducting an investigation into “alleged retaliation in violation of the NWSL Policy to Prevent and Eliminate Workplace Discrimination, Harassment, and Bullying.” The league added that the investigation remains ongoing and no final decisions have been reached.
The Pride named assistant coach Seb Hines as the interim head coach while the investigation continues. Hines is a former English Premier League player who also played for Orlando City until 2017. He has been an assistant coach with the Pride since 2020.
The NWSL also froze any roster movement for the Pride, according to The Athletic’s Meg Linehan.
“Providing a respectful environment and adhering to all league policies are of the utmost priority for the Pride, the team said in a statement. “The Club is committed to fully cooperating with the Joint Investigative Team through the conclusion of this process. As this is an ongoing investigation, the Club will have no further comment at this time.”
While it’s unclear exactly what happened with the Pride, the phrasing “retaliation” in NWSL’s recommendation likely alludes to a specific kind of violation laid out in the league’s policy:
NWSL also prohibits reprisal or retaliation against anyone for filing a good faith complaint under this policy; supporting or assisting, in good faith, someone else in pursuing a complaint; objecting to misconduct; or filing, testifying, assisting or participating in any manner in any investigation, proceeding or hearing conducted by a governmental enforcement agency. NWSL will not, and will not allow a Team to, retaliate against anyone for exercising any rights under this policy. Retaliation is a violation of this policy. Prohibited retaliation includes, but is not limited to, termination, demotion, suspension, failure to hire or consider for hire, failure to give equal consideration in making employment decisions, failure to make employment recommendations impartially, adversely affecting working conditions or otherwise denying any employment benefit.