PORTLAND, Ore. — Portland Thorns FC have signed international forward Genoveva Añonma, it was announced today. The Equatorial Guinea international will be added to the roster pending the receipt of her P-1 visa and International Transfer Certificate (ITC). Per league and club policy, terms of the deal were not disclosed.
The 10th-ranked goal scorer all-time in Frauen Bundesliga history and the 2012 African Women Footballer of the Year, Añonma, 25, who goes by Ayo, has played professionally in Germany since 2009. Añonma has appeared in 122 matches in the German league, recording 95 goals during her time with FF USV Jena and 1. FFC Turbine Potsdam.
“Ayo has a tremendous pedigree in front of goal and her goal scoring record is second to none in Europe,” said Thorns FC head coach Paul Riley. “She is bright on the ball, runs intelligently and has a knack for being in the right place at the right time. She is highly motivated to play in this country and her work ethic will be embraced by the Thorns faithful.”
Añonma began her career with USV Jena in 2009, leading the team in scoring both seasons before making the move to Turbine Potsdam in 2011. In her first season at Potsdam in 2011-12, Añonma became the first foreign player to lead the league in goal scoring (22 goals) as she guided the club to the Frauen Bundesliga title.
“Together Ayo, Alex, Christine and Jodie give our front line some depth and talent with ability to keep our forwards fresh, hungry and firing on all cylinders”, said Riley. “Ayo is an exciting addition and we look forward to seeing her further develop in our training environment.”
In UEFA Women’s Champions League matches, Añonma has scored six goals, helping Potsdam to the semifinals in the 2011-12 and 2013-14 editions. Notably, Añonma scored in a 4-2 loss to eventual-champions VfL Wolfsburg in the semifinal round of the 2013-14 tournament.
A member of the Equatorial Guinea Women’s National Team, Añonma has 32 international caps and 18 goals for her home country’s squad, leading her team to the African Women’s Championship title in 2008 and 2012. The African Women Footballer of the Year in 2012, Añonma competed at the 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup, scoring the team’s only two goals of the tournament in a 3-2 loss against Australia.
Añonma will join the team in Portland after her season concludes in Germany.
Genoveva (Ayo) Añonma
Born: April 19, 1989, in Kuso, Equatorial Guinea
Hometown: Kuso, Equatorial Guinea
Last Club: 1. FFC Turbine Potsdam (Germany)
Citizenship: Equatorial Guinea