BOYDS, Md (Jan 25, 2017) – The National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) and the Canada Soccer Association (CSA) have announced the list of Canadian Subsidized Players for the 2017 NWSL season, which confirms defender Shelina Zadorsky and goalkeeper Stephanie Labbé will return to the Washington Spirit as subsidized players.
Zadorsky and Labbé were both new subsidized players for the Spirit in 2016, helping lead the Spirit to its first ever appearance in an NWSL Championship and the Canadian National team to its second consecutive Olympic bronze medal at the Rio Olympics.
“Both Shelina and Steph had excellent first seasons with the Spirit while winning an Olympic bronze medal with Canada,” said Spirit general manager and head coach Jim Gabarra. “We’re elated to have these two experienced players returning to provide continuity and leadership.”
Labbé started eight games for the Spirit in 2016 and recorded five clean sheets, a club record for a single season. In the first five matches of the season, the Edmonton, Alberta native and her defensive unit allowed just one goal against.
After earning her first cap with the Canadian National Team in 2008, Labbé was a member of the Canadian 2011 and 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup teams. She was the starting keeper for the 2016 Rio Olympic Games.
In her first year with the Spirit, Zadorsky played 11 regular season matches, starting 10, totaling 911 minutes in the regular season, plus all minutes in both postseason matches. The center back recorded an assist in the semifinal to give the Spirit the early lead before the team went on to qualify for its first ever appearance in the NWSL Championship. The 24-year-old was voted Washington Spirit Newcomer of the Year in 2016.
Zadorsky represented Canada at the 2012 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup and was a starter for the side at the 2016 Olympics.
The complete list of Canadian subsidized players:
Allysha Chapman, Boston Breakers
Desiree Scott, FC Kansas City
Janine Beckie, Houston Dash
Nichelle Prince, Houston Dash
Sabrina D’Angelo, NC Courage
Christine Sinclair, Portland Thorns FC
Diana Matheson, Seattle Reign FC
Kailen Sheridan, Sky Blue FC
Stephanie Labbé, Washington Spirit
Shelina Zadorsky, Washington Spirit
Washington Spirit 2017 season tickets are available now by calling 301-591-0927 or visiting our website.