Sky Blue FC Signs Spanish Striker Adriana

Adriana has been a top goal scorer for her native Spain (Photo courtesy of Anton Maksimov).

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Team Announces Final Preseason Roster

Sky Blue FC of Women’s Professional Soccer (WPS) confirmed on Thursday the signing of 24-year-old Spanish striker Adriana Martin Santamaria, more commonly known on the international circuit as simply Adriana. A highly credible goal scorer for the Spanish National Team and also at the club level, Adriana will look to provide additional offensive prowess to Sky Blue FC as it embarks upon its third season of play.

“Adriana is a proven goal scorer in the Spanish League, UEFA Champions League and with her national team,” Sky Blue FC head coach Jim Gabarra commented. “In looking at our team, there are a couple needs we have that will make us better as a team once they are filled. One of those was acquiring a truly physical target player who is going to score goals, and we think we have found someone to fulfill that role in Adriana. In addition to being a very good sized and strong player, she has a proven track record of scoring goals.”

With a strong rapport being built among the current players on the Sky Blue FC roster, Gabarra said that it was very important to him to find an offensive threat who could mesh well with the rest of the team.

“With the players we have, Adriana will be a very good fit,” he remarked. “She adds a dimension to our attack that will be very beneficial. I have been tracking her for years, but talks got a little more heated up recently. The opportunity to sign her became a reality, and we are very happy to have her now joining our team.”

Adriana has made a huge impact in qualifying matches for her native Spain, scoring 16 goals and adding an assist to the stat sheet in just eight games of competition. Four years ago, she tallied eight scores in eight matches during the qualifying phase for the 2007 FIFA World Cup, despite being just 20 years of age.

“Adriana gives us an exceptionally mobile target forward who also has good size and aggressiveness when going to goal,” Sky Blue FC assistant coach Rick Stainton said. “She has a good knack for finding the goal, and she knows how to put the ball away. That’s obviously something that is wanted by every team, and we are very fortunate to have found that with Adriana.”

Currently rostered by Rayo Vallecano of the UEFA Women’s Champions League, Adriana has registered three goals in just four matches, and she previously buried six knocks in six games for Espanyol to give her a total of 10 goals in 12 UEFA matches. Additionally, she has recorded three hat tricks (twice scoring four times) in her last eight games for the Spanish National Team. She was held scoreless in just one of those eight games.

With the addition of Adriana, Sky Blue FC now has its final preseason roster in place. The team had already cut below the league maximum of 24 players, so no moves were required to be made over the past few days to meet the WPS standard. In fact, the team roster is one below the maximum allotment, with 23 players currently set to wear the team kit. Rosters are still subject to USSF and WPS approval, and transactions can be made throughout the year. However, teams cannot surpass the 24-player limit at any point during the 2011 season of play.

FINAL SKY BLUE FC ROSTER

# Position/Player DOB Hometown
8 F Adriana 7/11/1986 Spain
18 F Eniola Aluko 2/21/1987 Birmingham, England
0 GK Kristin Arnold 7/25/1988 Centennial, Colorado
5 D Anita Asante 4/27/1985 London, England
1 GK Karen Bardsley 10/14/1984 Chino Hills, California
31 MF Carolyn Blank 3/23/1988 Toms River, New Jersey
23 GK Jenni Branam 10/8/1980 Placentia, California
2 D/F Kiersten Dallstream 3/5/1988 Fountain Hills, Arizona
19 D Carrie Dew 12/8/1986 San Diego, California
5 D Kendall Fletcher 11/6/1984 Raleigh, North Carolina
22 GK Erin Guthrie 12/19/1987 Sparta, New Jersey
17 MF Tobin Heath 5/29/1988 Basking Ridge, New Jersey
15 D Danielle Johnson 11/17/1987 Baton Rouge, Louisiana
7 D Lindsey Johnson 4/13/1988 Phoenix, Arizona
21 F Laura Kalmari 5/27/1979 Kirkkinummi, Finland
6 MF Angie Kerr 3/29/1985 El Cajon, California
10 MF Allie Long 8/13/1987 Northport, New York
33 F Alyssa Mautz 7/29/1989 O’Fallon, Missouri
27 F Casey Nogueira 2/23/1989 Raleigh, North Carolina
9 MF Heather O’Reilly 1/2/1985 East Brunswick, New Jersey
11 M Therese Sjogran 4/8/1977 Lund, Sweden
14 D Brittany Taylor 9/18/1987 Campbell Hall, New York
16 D Michelle Wenino 5/3/1987 Aurora, Colorado


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