NJ/NY Gotham FC announced Tuesday that veteran goalkeeper and Queens, N.Y. native Michelle Betos has signed a two-year deal that will bring the New Yorker back to her hometown roots.
Gotham FC acquired her rights in December after Racing Louisville FC waived her.
“I can’t believe we managed to get Michelle here with us at Gotham FC,” head coach Scott Parkinson said in a statement. “She’s a competitor, has the highest standards professionally and will help us all understand what it means to play for and represent this community.”
After more than a decade-long career that has spanned multiple leagues both overseas and domestic, Beton finally will get the opportunity to play in front of a crowd much closer to home.
“I’m thrilled to be joining this club,” Betos said in a statement. “I have always dreamed of playing at home and Gotham FC just inherited 40-plus crazy Italian fans at Red Bull Arena every weekend.”
Betos joined Gotham FC after a season with Racing Louisville FC in which she started 20 matches, logged 1,800 minutes, and recorded 96 saves. The Racing captain finished second overall in saves despite being sidelined with an injury late in the season.
Prior to Racing, Betos spent her first seven seasons in the National Women’s Soccer League in the Pacific Northwest competing on both sides of the Cascadia Rivalry. After playing the inaugural season with then Seattle Reign (now OL Reign), Betos found her way to the Rose City, as she earned 2015 goalkeeper of the year honors and helped the Portland Thorns win the 2016 NWSL Shield. She was a teammate of Gotham FC teammate Allie Long.
In 2015, she scored an equalizer in the 95th minute against then FC Kansas City, becoming the first goalkeeper to record a goal in NWSL history. Betos played overseas in Norway for Toppserien side Vålerenga Fotball Damer in 2017 before returning to the Reign in 2018.
“I have such an incredible amount of respect for everyone in the organization from the top down, and I know their locker room is truly a special one,” Betos said. “The potential of this team is so exciting, and I believe we will achieve great things this season and beyond.”
Gotham FC begins preseason on Feb. 1, before kicking off the 2022 season on Saturday, March 19, with group play for the NWSL Challenge Cup. The cup will feature three groups of four teams, playing double round-robin matches, semifinals. The NWSL Challenge Cup Final on Saturday, May 7.