It’s been a busy week for the Thorns. Just on Thursday, Portland has announced the extension of Christine Sinclair as well as the (temporary) departure of Lindsey Horan. Here’s everything from those two moves.
Lindsey Horan to Leave the Thorns on Loan to French Side Olympique Lyonnais
Horan’s departure is one that will be brutal for fans. Her six years with the Thorns have been extraordinary. She scored the lone goal in their 2017 NWSL Championship victory over the North Carolina Courage. Throughout her career, she was named the NWSL MVP (2018), NWSL Best XI (2018, 2019) and MLS Best XI Second Team (2017, 2021).
She leaves for Olympique Lyonnais after scoring 25 goals for the Thorns, and adding nine assists.
Her move to France will be the second time Horan plays in the Division 1 Féminine. Before joining the Thorns, she played four seasons with Paris Saint-Germain.
“Firstly, I want to thank the Portland organization for supporting me in following a few of my career aspirations, this would not be possible without the club and for that I am forever grateful!” Horan said on Twitter. “I wish the team and my teammates nothing but the best this season!”
Firstly, I want to thank the Portland organization for supporting me in following a few of my career aspirations, this would not be possible without the club and for that I am forever grateful! I wish the team and my teammates nothing but the best this season! @ThornsFC pic.twitter.com/NAB3q99uJp
— Lindsey Horan (@LindseyHoran) January 27, 2022
Horan’s impact reached further than just Portland. For the United States, she has made 108 caps. Within those 108 appearances, comes 25 goals and 34 assists. Most recently, she was voted as the 2021 U.S. Soccer Female Player of the Year.
Though she will be with Olympique Lyonnais until June of 2023, she did sign a contract extension with the Thorns through 2025. While she is gone for now, there will be a party in Portland when she returns.
Christine Sinclair Extended
The good news came when Thorns legend Christine Sinclair reached an agreement with the club to keep her in the Rose City through 2022. There is an option for the 2023 season.
This was good news that many hoped for. Sinclair’s legacy in Portland speaks for itself. The Canadian forward leads the Thorns in all-time games played (143), games started (140), minutes played (12,404) and goals (54). Throughout her nine previous seasons with the club, she has helped the Thorns earn plenty of hardware. This includes two NWSL Championships (2013, 2017), the NWSL Fall Series (2020), the NWSL Challenge Cup (2021), the Women’s International Champions Cup (2021) and two NWSL Shields (2016, 2021).
“Sinclair is a player who has proudly represented the Thorns organization since day one of the NWSL,” Thorns Head Coach Rhian Wilkinson said. “Her ability to maintain the very top professional standard for as long as she has, her understanding of the game, her finishing ability, and her leadership make her a player we could not be prouder to have represent us.”
Sinclair has scored 31 goals in 62 appearances for her country. More recently, Sinclair led Canada to win the gold medal at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, including a goal in their opening match against Japan.