Portland Thorns FC today officially announced the signing of French midfielder Amandine Henry. The agreement is effective after Henry’s contract with Lyon expires. A source told The Equalizer that Henry is expected in Portland on or about June 1.
“Amandine is a proven, world-class player with demonstrated success at both the club and international level in France,” said Gavin Wilkinson, GM/president of soccer for Thorns FC. “Her accomplishments speak for themselves, and we are very pleased to add a player of her caliber to an already talented Thorns club and to the NWSL.”
Henry, 26, spent nine seasons at Lyon. During that time the club won eight French titles, four Women’s French Cups, and the UEFA Champions League twice. Currently Lyon are seven points clear of Paris Saint-Germain who have a match in hand. Henry needs two more appearances to reach 200 from all competitions for Lyon.
“Amandine is one of the very best in the world, and I am delighted she is joining us in Portland in her prime,” said Thorns FC head coach Mark Parsons. “Her ability to control the game in the center of midfield helps everyone else do their job better. She has exceptional passing range, is very intelligent on and off the ball and can score special goals, as she proved in the World Cup last year. Amandine brings a winning mentality to a talented group and I believe she will play an important role in supporting our team chemistry and culture, on the field and in the locker room.”
The World Cup is where Henry became known to soccer fans around the globe. Playing as a deep-lying midfielder, Henry orchestrated things for a French team that many felt wast he most attractive side to watch. Their tournament ultimately ended on penalty kicks after a 1-1 draw to Germany in the quarterfinals. For her efforts, Henry was awarded the Silver Ball.
The addition of Henry adds to a wild offseason in Portland. The club assuaged to Alex Morgan’s request for a trade to Orlando and acquired the rights to Adrianna Franch, Lindsay Horan, and the top pick in the Pride expansion draft plus the first overall pick in the college draft. Those picks turned into Meghan Klingenberg and Emily Sonnett who have started together on the backline for the United States. The Thorns also acquired the No. 2 pick and flipped it to Sky Blue for Nadia Nadim. A subsequent acquisition of 17-year old Mallory Pugh via the new allocation process went astray when Pugh altered course and decided to go to UCLA.
Henry missed France’s trip to the United States for the SheBelieves Cup due to a calf injury.