Therese Sjögran has signed to play for Sky Blue FC of Women’s Professional Soccer (WPS). Sjögran will be out on loan from Swedish club LdB FC Malmö, the 2010 Damallsvenskan champions. Sjögran has played for LdB FC Malmö since 2001 and has 63 goals in more than 200 appearances with the club. A member of the Swedish National Team since 1997, Sjögran has more than 200 caps and 18 goals for Sweden.“Therese Sjögran was one of the first players that I pursued the minute I accepted the Sky Blue Head Coaching position,” Sky Blue FC Head Coach Jim Gabarra said. “I believe that she will be one of the top midfielders in WPS. Her career achievements have been consistently exceptional culminating in being named the Swedish female footballer of the year.”
In November, Sjögran won the Diamond Ball, which is awarded by the Swedish Football Association (SvFF) and newspaper Sportbladet. According to UEFA, Sjögran has played in 30 UEFA competitions for Sweden, scoring four goals, her first coming in the 2007 Euro in a 7-0 win against Romania. With Malmö, Sjögran played in six games in the UEFA Champions League.
“I am extremely happy that LDB FC and Sky Blue FC have found this solution for me. This is something I have wanted for a long time, and LDB FC has supported me through the process,” Sjögran said. “The decision fell on Sky Blue (FC) thanks to Jim Gabarra’s interest in me as a player as well as both organizations desire to cooperate. Now I get the opportunity to play professional soccer, World Cup, Damallsvenska game, and Champions League all in one year. I look forward towards 2011 and the challenges that lay ahead.”
When LDB FC won its first Damallsvenskan championship this year, it was the team’s first in 16 years. Sjögran played a large part in the team’s success.
“Therese has during several years been one of LDB FC’s, Sweden’s, and Damallsvenskan’s best players,” LBD Head Coach Martin Sjögran said. “It feels good that we have reached an agreement with Sky Blue (FC) where we give Therese the ability to play in WPS. Therese has done a lot for LDB FC both on and off the field during her career with us. To (then) finally win the Swedish League with Therese, it feels right to give Therese the ability to pursue new challenges in a different league. Therese will return in August to finish of the Swedish League and to take part (in) our Champions League adventure. This is a great solution for all parties. Hopefully this is the first step towards a deeper and stronger relationship with Sky Blue (FC).”
Regarding the partnership between the two clubs, Gabarra said: “Sky Blue FC is elated to partner with Ldb Malmö and create this pioneering affiliation agreement. This is, if not the first, surely one of the first affiliation agreements between an established international club and a WPS club. We look forward to developing and growing this relationship so that both clubs and women’s football can continue to grow and achieve.”
Said LDB FC General Manager Niclas Carlnen: “LDB FC constantly works towards developing the organization and club. We look for new partnerships with organizations both nationally and internationally. That we now with Sky Blue FC, one of the best and most stable organizations in WPS both on the field and economically of the field can start a partnership on several levels is very interesting. Players and staff members will get the ability to experience new challenges through this partnership that will strengthen both organizations.”