Sky Blue FC Add Dutch
National Team Captain Daphne Koster

Koster is the first Dutch player to play in WPS (Photo courtesy of Dick Tuit, Sport-Promotion)

Koster is First Dutch Player to Play in Women’s Professional Soccer

Somerset, N.J. (Wednesday, October 21, 2009) – Defending Women’s Professional Soccer champion Sky Blue FC made official today the signing of Dutch National Team captain Daphne (Daf-nuh) Koster, becoming the first Dutch player to play in WPS. Koster adds another proven champion to the Sky Blue FC defense, as the central defender has been a member of nine championship clubs in her native Netherlands.

“Daphne Koster is internationally experienced, and she will be a great addition to our defensive line,” Sky Blue FC head coach Pauliina Miettinen commented. “She played extremely well at the European Championships and was one of the backbones of the Netherlands defense, overall one of the best defenders in the tournament. Daphne is very versatile player with an ability to read the game well, and she is also a leader on and off the field.”

Koster began her soccer career at the age of six with SVA in Assendelft, where she played until turning 19 years old. The Den Haag native then joined Ter Leede in Sassenheim and was a winner of four national championships, two KNVB Cups and the Super Cup once. Following the 2002-03 season, she was named the runner-up for MVP of the Dutch Hoofdklasse (Premier) League before winning the award the next two seasons. She has since spent the past two years with AZ in Alkmaar, winning another pair of league championships.

“It has always been a dream to play in the USA, and I am very delighted that this dream comes true at Sky Blue FC,” Koster said of the signing. “I think WPS is the best competition in the world at this moment, and I look forward to the challenge of playing with and against the best players in a professional setting.”

Koster first played for the Dutch National Team at the age of 16 and has since capped 91 times. She has enjoyed a 12-year career with her native national team and currently serves as its captain.

"From all reports by Pauliina, who scouted this talented player in the recent women's European Championships this past August, Sky Blue FC is getting a solid defender with tremendous ability and extensive international experience,” Sky Blue FC General Manager Gerry Marrone stated. “The fact that Daphne is the captain of her country's national team is also testimony of the respect from her teammates, in addition to her leadership skills."

This signing marks the second in what has been an exciting week for Sky Blue FC after the team announced this past Monday that it has agreed to terms with U.S. National Team midfielder and New Jersey native Carli Lloyd. The team recently announced Miettinen as its head coach, and her assistant coaching staff was unveiled last week.

"This has been an exciting month for Sky Blue FC,” Marrone continued. “We have put together a high-quality and well-rounded coaching staff, as well as announced the signing of two top players. We look forward to building on the momentum that carried us to the 2009 WPS Championship."

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