Update (Sept. 13, 7:30 AM PT): In a new story, Kathryn Batte of the Daily Mail is reporting that OL Reign and Manchester United are close to an agreement to see goalkeeper Phallon Tullis-Joyce depart Seattle before the WSL transfer window closes on Thursday evening, in a move that could surpass the prior record transfer of a goalkeeper of £100,000 (approx. $125,000). Tullis-Joyce is said to be en route to Manchester; The Equalizer’s Bella Munson noted that she was not outside with the rest of the Reign at training on Tuesday.
Original story (Sept. 7, 10:30 AM PT): Rumors arose on Thursday that Manchester United are interested in acquiring OL Reign goalkeeper Phallon Tullis-Joyce. The report, from Kathryn Batte of the Daily Mail, indicated that Tullis-Joyce would replace England international Mary Earps, for whom Arsenal has made two transfer bids, the latest of which would reportedly set a new record for a goalkeeper transfer.
According to the report, United are negotiating a transfer fee with OL Reign for Tullis-Joyce, but no agreement has yet been reached. The England transfer window closes on Sept. 14. United kick off the 2023/24 FA WSL season on Oct. 1 and enter the UEFA Women’s Champions League in the second round of qualifying in mid-October.
Tullis-Joyce started every league game for OL Reign for the past two seasons until she moved to the backup role in favor of Claudia Dickey for the team’s match against Angel City FC on Aug. 28. Dickey also started the following league game against Orlando. Reign head coach Laura Harvey indicated the decision was made in part because of Dickey’s success in keeping three clean sheets during the NWSL Challenge Cup group stage.
Should Tullis-Joyce be transferred, the Reign have the option of either retaining her NWSL playing rights in exchange for the league keeping the entire transfer fee, or they can relinquish her rights and keep 85% of the fee as allocation money, with the remainder going to the league. Ride of the Valkyries has reached out to the Reign for comment but did not hear back at the time of publication.