Thorns FC

Portland Thorns FC sign two-time FIFA Women's World Cup winner Becky Sauerbrunn to one-year extension

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Sauerbrunn: “I’m thrilled to be continuing my career with the Thorns as we enter a new era for the club.”

PORTLAND, Ore. – Portland Thorns FC have re-signed free agent defender Becky Sauerbrunn to a one-year contract, keeping the two-time FIFA Women’s World Cup winner in the Rose City through 2024, the club announced today.

“I’m thrilled to be continuing my career with the Thorns as we enter a new era for the club,” Sauerbrunn said. “And as we welcome new ownership and investment, I’m thankful for the opportunity to play for the city and supporters that have always made being a Thorn such an unrivaled experience.”

In her first 11 seasons in the National Women’s Soccer League Sauerbrunn has cemented herself as, arguably, the top defender in the league, winning a league-best four Defender of the Year awards (2013, 2014, 2015, 2019) and a league-best eight selections to the NWSL Best XI and Second XI (2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2022). Sauerbrunn is a three-time NWSL Champion, twice with the now defunct FC Kansas City (2014, 2015), and again with Portland Thorns in 2022. Additionally, she helped Portland win the 2020 NWSL Community Shield, the 2021 NWSL Challenge Cup, and the 2022 NWSL Shield, making her one of a few players in the history of the league to win every possible title, as well as the 2021 Women’s International Champions Cup.

“We are delighted to be able to bring Becky back to Portland for this upcoming season, her leadership, on and off the field, her professionalism, and quality on the pitch will be paramount to what we are hoping to achieve this year as a team and in this new era as a club,” General Manager Karina LeBlanc said.

Since joining Thorns FC ahead of the 2020 season, Sauerbrunn has appeared in 42 matches, 39 of which have been starts, bringing her NWSL career total to 164 games played, totaling 14,071 minutes. In June of 2022 Sauerbrunn recorded her first and only goal as a member of Portland, finding the back of the net on the team’s way to a 6-0 victory over Orlando Pride. In total, Sauerbrunn has scored three goals in her NWSL professional career, scoring once for every club she has played for.

“Becky’s experience and presence, speaks for itself, and we are so pleased that this presence will continue in a Thorns jersey for the season ahead,” Head Coach Mike Norris said. “She has the ability to set standards and she continues to have an open mind for growth and excellence, this combination will be a great asset for us in 2024.”

As a member of the United States Women’s National Team, Sauerbrunn has won the FIFA Women’s World Cup in 2015 and 2019, secured two medals at the Summer Olympics, including a Gold Medal in 2012 and a Bronze Medal in 2020, and sits ninth all-time with 217 caps.