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Houston Dash acquire Brazilian defender

Tiffany McCarty, Jessica McDonald head to Kansas City in exchange for Draft pics, international roster spot

Jennifer Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

In a move that Houston Dash managing director Brian Ching called not easy, but necessary for the growth of the team, the Dash have traded forwards Tiffany McCarty and Jessica McDonald to FC Kansas City in exchange for an international spot and the eighth overall pick in the 2016 NWSL College Draft. The news comes along with the signing of Brazilian defender Poliana, announced by the club Wednesday.

"We have been after Poliana for a while and actually acquired her rights last season, but were unable to bring her in due to Brazil going into residency for the World Cup," Ching said. "However, we are very excited that she will now be able to join us for the 2016 season. She is a versatile player that brings international experience and will strengthen our roster."

Poliana Barbosa Medeiros, commonly known as Poliana, has 34 caps to her name for the Brazil women's national team and has notched four goals at the international level during her time with the team. Twenty four years old, she was a part of the squad during the 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup in Canada, where she tallied one start and one substitution during the group stage. Poliana also has featured in Brazil's Pan American and International Tournament of Natal winning squads last year.

After Brazil's World Cup run, the defender was signed with Starjnan in Iceland, where she scored a goal in the team's Icelandic Women's Cup victory and five goals in the qualifying for the UEFA Women's Champions League. Just before joining the Icelandic team, Poliana made more than 50 appearances for the Brazilian club Sao Jose, claiming victories in the 2012 and 2013 Copa do Brasil, 2013 and 2014 Copa Libertadores, and the 2014 International Women's Club Championship.

In regards to the trade with FC Kansas City, the move gives Houston three selections in this year's draft, all in the first round of selection. The order of picks for the Dash are now Nos. 5, 6, and 8 overall. The 2016 NWSL College Draft will be held this Friday, Jan. 15, at the Baltimore Convention Center beginning at 9 a.m. CT.

As for McCarty and McDonald, Ching added, "We want to thank both Jessica and Tiffany for everything they have done for the club. This was not an easy decision for our club, but one that we thought was necessary as we continue to build our team. We would like to wish them the best of luck in the future."

Twenty-five-year-old McCarty was picked up by the Dash in the 2014 NWSL Expansion Draft. The forward tallied five goals and made one assist in 37 appearances (18 starts) in her two seasons in Houston.

McDonald joined the Dash after a trade at the 2015 NWSL College Draft. At 27 years old, the forward appeared in 20 games (19 starts) in 2015 for the Dash, scoring seven goals with one assist.

Poliana
Full name: Poliana Barbosa Medeiros
Position: Defender
International: Brazil
Date of Birth: February 6, 1991
Birthplace: Ituiutaba, Brazil
Height: 5’9"
Previous club: Stjarnan (Iceland)
How acquired: via discovery signing on January 13, 2016