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Spirit sign Bristol Academy foward Natasha Harding

The Washington Spirit announced today the club has signed Bristol Academy forward Natasha Harding. Per team and league policy, terms of the deal were not disclosed.

“I love Bristol and won’t forget what they have done for me but now I’m really excited to start this new chapter in my career and in my life,” Harding said. “I’m a winner and I believe Washington is the place for me to progress further and hopefully win trophies. I cannot wait to get started.”

The 25-year-old Welsh international joins the Spirit after eight successful seasons in the FA Women’s Super League (FAWSL). After a five-year stint with Cardiff City, Harding joined Bristol in 2012. In her three seasons with Bristol, Harding made over 50 appearances and scored 14 goals across all competitions.

Harding recently played a crucial role in Bristol’s 2-1 aggregate win over Barcelona in the UEFA Women’s Champions League, forcing an own goal in the first leg and drawing a penalty in the second leg. The win sends the FAWSL side to the quarterfinals of the tournament for the first time in the club’s history.

“Natasha is a great talent who will bring plenty of quality and pace to our front line”, Spirit general manager and coach Mark Parsons said. “She is a tireless worker with tremendous character and has the ability to make us very dangerous in the final third.”

Harding will join the Spirit in early March for the start of the 2015 NWSL preseason.