Portland Thorns announced on Thursday afternoon that midfielder and 2022 Rookie of the Year finalist Sam Coffey had signed a three-year contract extension.
The Penn State graduate was selected by the Rose City club in 2021, but she didn’t play until the next year, after she signed a two-year contract.
In college, she played the role of an attacking midfielder, and former Thorns’ coach Mark Parsons described her as “someone who can be a big difference maker in the final third.”
Under coach Rhian Wilkinson, she’s had to change her role to a more defensive position, occupying the role of the six. Was it hard for her to adjust to it? It must have had its challenges, but Coffey seems like a quick learner because the quality she showed playing there was so high that it got her a nomination for Rookie of the Year. Moreover, it helped her get her first call-up to the USWNT in June, but she had to wait until September 6 to make her debut against Nigeria.
As a matter of fact, she is on camp right now. After helping Portland win its third championship on October 29th, she was in camp with the USWNT a week later, ready to prepare for the games against Germany.
How do you like your afternoon Coffey? ☕️ pic.twitter.com/X39FL1dCwy— U.S. Women's National Soccer Team (@USWNT) November 8, 2022
For the Thorns
Sam Coffey played 19 games for club and started in 18 of them. Amongst midfielders, she completed the most successful long passes (70) in the NWSL, registered 38 interceptions (third in the league), created 35 chances (fifth in the league), and had a 83% passing accuracy. Her first professional goal was on September 21 against Racing Louisville, and she registered two assists during the regular season.
About the contract extension, Thorns General Manager Karina LeBlanc said: “Our team’s mentality is to always exceed expectations, and Sam does that daily. She played a key role in our championship run this season, and will continue to be a part of our long-term plans to secure another title.”
Coach Rhian Wilkinson also said: “Sam was a rookie for one day; mature beyond her years. Her ability to lead from the back, to always be available, to manipulate the opposition and create spaces for her herself and her teammates, is impressive to see from someone so new to the professional game.”
With the news about Rocky Rodríguez, another Penn State graduate, signing her contract extension yesterday, the club keeps building toward next season.