Nadia Nadim and Manchester City head coach Nick Cushing. (Photo courtesy fo Manchester City)

MANCHESTER, England — Portland Thorns and former Sky Blue FC striker Nadia Nadim has agreed to join the Manchester City women in January.

Nadim, who performs for the Denmark national team, has scored 22 goals in 74 international appearances. She helped the Danes reach this summer’s UEFA Women’s Euros.

“I am so excited to join Manchester City and for me there wasn’t really any other choice,” Nadim said in a statement. Manchester City has done so much for women’s football and I want to be a part of the history they are making. Their ambitions to grow the game and win trophies reflect my own and I’m ready for the new challenge, especially when it comes to challenging for the Women’s Champions League trophy.

“The City Football Academy is massive and the knowledge and professionalism of everyone at the club is something I’ve never seen before. I always want to improve as a player and I’m confident that I can do that here. I only hope I can contribute to helping the whole team achieve even more this season.”

Originally from Afghanistan, Nadim arrived in Denmark as a refugee at the age of 12 and her passion for the game has flourished ever since beginning with her time at local community club GUG Boldklub. She signed her first professional contract with IK Slovbakken in 2006 and later played for Fortuna Hjørring with whom she had her first taste of Champions League action.

In 2014, Nadim moved to the National Women’s Soccer League to play for Sky Blue FC before joining Portland, where last season she was the team’s top goal scorer netting home nine goals helping the club secure the 2016 NWSL Shield.

Nadim will finish out the NWSL season with Portland.

“Nadia is somebody who has been on our radar for a while now,” Manchester City head coach Nick Cushing said in a press release. “Her physical attributes and her presence as a striker are really going to bring our team on and really improve us.

“We speak consistently about the type of person we want to bring in and that’s no different with this signing. Nadia is a very bubbly character, somebody who loves the game and I think her story shows the desire and the real drive she has to succeed as a football player.”

Last season, Manchester City lifted the FA WSL Continental Tyres Cup trophy, became champions of the Women’s Super League and won the SSE Women’s FA Cup for the first time in their history. The team also made its debut in the UEFA Women’s Champions League reaching the semifinals.

Front Row Soccer editor Michael Lewis has covered 13 World Cups (eight men, five women), seven Olympics and 25 MLS Cups. He has written about New York City FC, New York Cosmos, the New York Red Bulls and both U.S. national teams for Newsday and has penned a soccer history column for the Lewis, who has been honored by the Press Club of Long Island and National Soccer Coaches Association of America, is the former editor of He has written seven books about the beautiful game and has published ALIVE AND KICKING The incredible but true story of the Rochester Lancers. It is available at