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Carli Lloyd officially signs with Manchester City

Carli Lloyd puts pen to paper on a new contract to play for Manchester City Women (photo: Manchester City)

Carli Lloyd puts pen to paper on a new contract to play for Manchester City Women (photo: Manchester City)

Two-time FIFA World Player of the Year, Carli Lloyd has officially signed a short-term contract to play for Manchester City Women during the club’s abbreviated spring campaign plus the Women’s FA Cup and Champions League campaign where the FAWSL holders are through to the quarterfinals.

“I’m incredibly excited to be joining Manchester City, a Club which is leading the development of women’s football both on and off the pitch,” Lloyd said.

Lloyd confirmed in a tweet shortly after the announcement that she intends to rejoining the Dash after her short stay at Manchester City.

Lloyd joins U.S. teammates Alex Morgan and Crystal Dunn plus former U.S. teammate Heather O’Reilly in Europe. Lloyd is joining the reigning FAWSL champions, while Dunn (Chelsea) and O’Reilly (Arsenal) previously joined the only two sides to finish within 10 points of Man City. Morgan is currently with Lyon.

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Man City’s debut match in the Spring Series is April 23 against Dunn’s Chelsea side. Champions League play resumes March 23 with a trip to Denmark to face Fortuna Hjørring.

“Having played in the U.S. throughout my career, the chance to fulfill a long-held ambition to test myself in a new footballing environment, as well as playing in the Champions League, is something I am relishing,” Lloyd, 34, said.

Lloyd is the current FIFA World Player of the Year, an award she has won the last two years. Her most iconic moment was the first half of the 2015 World Cup final when she scored a hat trick in the opening 16 minutes in the United States’ 5-2 win over Japan. Lloyd repeated in 2016 despite the U.S. going out in the quarterfinals of the Olympics and a knee injury that cost her two months of the Dash season. She hit the gold medal-winning strike at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing and duplicated the feat four years later in London.

“We are a successful team but a young team too having only entered the Women’s Super League three years ago,” Man City coach Nick Cushing said. “Adding players to our squad with substantial experience is crucial to our development.
“Carli has had an incredible career and is recognized as one of the best in the world. There is much we can learn from her that will help us to improve as a team. We are all looking forward to working with her over the coming months”.

In four NWSL seasons with the Western New York Flash and Dash, Lloyd has 25 goals and 9 assists in 53 appearances. She was limited to 7 matches for the Dash last season due to her injured knee and the Olympics.

The Lloyd to Manchester City rumors began to fly late last week following a report in Times Sport. Jonathan Tannenwald of philly.com and Corey Roepken of The Houston Chronicle were among the first to confirm the move after chasing the story through the weekend. Tannenwald reported that Lloyd turned down offers from Lyon and an unspecified club in China. She is expected to be back in the United States next week for training camp with the U.S. ahead of the SheBelieves Cup.

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