July 17, 2016
Breakers sign England forward Dowie
The Boston Breakers have signed England forward Natasha Dowie, the team announced Sunday.
Dowie played two years for Liverpool Ladies FC under Breakers coach Matt Beard. In three seasons at Liverpool (2012-2015), Dowie scored 45 goals in 42 games and was named the FA Players Player of the Year in 2013, leading Liverpool to its first FA Women’s Super League title.
“Tats is an infectious person,” Beard said. “Her attitude on the pitch is fantastic, and with her personality, I think she’ll be a great lift to the team, but secondly, she’s a good, honest professional. She works hard, and I think that will rub off on some of the players. The players won’t get a rest when she’s in training and in games, but the most important thing is, I know if you get her in goal-scoring situations, she’ll score goals. Obviously that’s been our problem all season. We’ve got ourselves in some real good goal-scoring positions, but we just haven’t taken our chances, and at this top level, you get punished if you don’t take them. For me, it’ll be good to work with her again.”
Dowie, 28, is the niece of former Northern Ireland international and Premier League forward Iain Dowie.
The Breakers traded their lowest second-round pick in the 2017 NWSL College Draft to the Western New York Flash for an international roster spot for the remainder of the 2016 season.
“We were surprised she became available when she did,” Breakers general manager Lee Billiard said. “She was a player who we wanted to go after in the offseason. To have her become available now, we had to jump and secure her before she signed a long-term contract elsewhere. To be able to bring her over for the remainder of this year and plan for 2017 with Natasha on board is positive for us.”
Dowie, who had a stint with the Melbourne Victory in the Westfield W-League in Australia in 2015, played four matches for Doncaster Rovers Belles in the FAWSL, scoring one goal this year. Dowie also played for Fulham, Charlton Athletic and Everton, scoring the winning goal against Arsenal in the 2010 FA Cup Final.
Dowie, who earned 14 caps for England, made her debut with the Lionesses as a substitute in a 3-0 win over Turkey in a Women’s World Cup qualifier in November 2009. She played for England in the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup qualifiers and scored her first international goal in a 6-0 win over Belarus in 2013.
“I am delighted to be signing for Boston Breakers,” Dowie said. “I have always had a strong interest in playing abroad, and this was strengthened more so after my short loan spell in the Australian W-League last year. I have known Matt Beard since the early days of my career at Charlton FC when I was 17-years-old, and we have cemented our relationship since then with a successful spell together at Liverpool. He knows my game well and is a manager who believes in me, and we work well together. I am looking forward to joining up with former teammates Libby (Stout), Lollo (Louise Schillgard), Whitney (Engen) and Brooke (Elby), and I'm sure having them around will help me to settle in easily. I am hoping I can add something different to the squad, help them improve on their current league position, connect well with the fans, and also looking forward to getting to know the beautiful city of Boston.”
Dowie played with Stout, Schillgard and Engen at Liverpool and with Elby at Melbourne.