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Tobin Heath And Christen Press Sign With Manchester United, Joining Fellow USWNT Stars In England

Sept. 09, 2020, 12:36 p.m. (ET)

Christen Press and Tobin Heath react after a goal against Costa Rica on Nov. 10, 2019 in Jacksonville, Fla.


Tobin Heath became the latest U.S. women’s soccer star to move abroad when the standout winger joined Manchester United on a one-year deal, the English club announced Wednesday. And before the day was done her national team scoring partner Christen Press had joined her.

Heath, a winger who has played in 168 games for the USWNT, signed with the club just hours before Press, a forward who has played 138 games for the U.S. Their moves follow those of U.S. teammates Rose Lavelle and Sam Mewis, who recently signed with Manchester City.

“Manchester United is an exceptional club and I’m thrilled to be joining them,” Heath said in a statement.

“I’m looking forward to the challenge of competing in England, playing with and against some of the best players in the world. I have big ambitions for this season and can't wait to get on the pitch with my new team and start this next chapter.”

The 32-year-old Heath, who played collegiately at North Carolina, is a creative force on a U.S. national team that’s loaded with offensive talent. Since making her national team debut in 2008, she’s scored 33 goals and added 40 assists while playing in three World Cups and three Olympic Games — winning two each.

She’s also been a star in the National Women’s Soccer League, playing the past seven seasons with the Portland Thorns and helping the team win the 2013 and 2017 championships. She was a three-time NWSL Best XI selection for the Thorns, who will retain her NWSL rights.

Press, 31, debuted with the USWNT in 2013, following a standout career at Stanford. She’s scored 58 goals and added 37 assists for the national team while helping it win the 2015 and 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cups. She was also part of the 2016 U.S. Olympic Team.

She joins Manchester United following 2.5 seasons with the Utah Royals in the NWSL. She was a four-time league Best XI selection, including in 2019 with the Royals, who will retain her rights

The dynamic USWNT duo are joining a Manchester United team that’s making a push in the increasingly competitive Women’s Super League. Despite the club’s storied history on the men’s side, Manchester United established its women’s team just two years ago, but in that time the Red Devils went from winning a second-division championship in their inaugural season to finishing fourth in the WSL in 2019-20.

“I feel blessed to have the opportunity to continue to strive to be my best and to compete for trophies this year,” Press said in a statement. “I look forward to this new challenge and I can’t wait to start training with the team.”

Chrös McDougall has covered the Olympic and Paralympic movement for TeamUSA.org since 2009 on behalf of Red Line Editorial, Inc. He is based in Minneapolis-St. Paul.

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