The forward/defender served as a centerpiece of a big-time deal as she heads to Portland to be closer to family

U.S. women’s national team star Crystal Dunn has joined the Portland Thorns in a blockbuster three-team trade.

The forward/defender, a former NWSL MVP and Golden Boot winner, joins the Thorns after asking her previous club, the North Carolina Courage, to facilitate a move to Portland to be closer to her family.

In order to facilitate that trade, OL Reign were brought into the mix, initially completing a trade to acquire Dunn in exchange for goalkeeper Casey Murphy and allocation money.

The Reign then completed a deal to send Dunn to Portland as desired with the Thorns providing allocation money, an international roster spot for the 2021 season and their first-round pick in the 2022 NWSL College Draft to sign the USWNT star.

In total, OL Reign will receive $150,000 in allocation money immediately, $50,000 on January 1 and additional allocation money conditioned upon Dunn’s future playing status in the NWSL.

“We are delighted to add a world-class player to an already talented group,” said Gavin Wilkinson, Thorns FC general manager and president of soccer.

“Crystal has proven herself on the international level and been a dominant player in the NWSL for many years. Her professionalism and presence will reinforce and add to the strong culture we have in this club.”

Dunn heads to Portland after emerging as a legitimate star in the NWSL and with the USWNT. Dunn, who previously played for the Washington Spirit and Chelsea, won the NWSL MVP in 2015 along with the Golden Boot, scoring a league-best 15 goals, while also earning two Best XI selections throughout her career.

In total, Dunn has appeared in 89 games, recording 32 goals and 20 assists throughout her NWSL career.

While generally featuring in attack on the club level, Dunn has starred as a fullback for the USWNT, earning a total of 104 caps while providing 24 goals and 17 assists on the international stage.

She was a member of the USWNT”s 2019 Women’s World Cup squad, as she started six of the team’s seven matches en route to victory in France.

The Courage, meanwhile, bring in a much-needed goalkeeper in the 24-year-old Murphy, who joins after stints with Montpellier and OL Reign.

Murphy is a familiar face for the Courage, as the goalkeeper made a season-high and NWSL career-high 11 saves against her new club in the 2019 NWSL semifinals.

“Casey is a young, super talented goalkeeper,” said NC Courage head coach Paul Riley. “She has a ton of fantastic qualities and as she garners experience, we thoroughly expect her to be banging on the USWNT door.

“She comes to a team with a consistent, dynamic lineup and that will help her settle and grow into a bonified exceptional professional goalkeeper.”