Laura Harvey’s recruitment of Kim Little to Seattle Reign FC has taken the American National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) by storm!
Kim Little is a very recognisable name in the United Kingdom, her game-changing impact on the pitch and award winning achievements have quickly catapulted the Scottish international as one of the best female footballers of our day.
Notably, Kim Little was named the inaugural winner of the Professional Footballers’ Association Women’s Player of the Year award. She was also a member of the Team GB Olympic women’s football team that reached the quarter-finals of London 2012.
Her success in America is not surprising, but maybe the speed in which the midfielder has adapted to the playing style of the American league is.
The talented Scottish international’s immediate impact has already seen her make league history by becoming the first player to earn the Army National Guard Player of the Month award on multiple occasions as well as in back-to-back months.
Little is currently the leading National Women’s Soccer League goalscorer with 11 goals.
Obviously it takes more than one player to make a successful team and that is where, in my opinion, you have to thank the tactical mastermind of Seattle Reign head coach Laura Harvey.
The player recruiting rules are a lot different in the US compared to say Europe and in Laura Harvey’s first season I do not believe she was in America during the player drafts? Also if I remember correctly, some of the top players who were allocated to her squad were either committed to another club or missed the majority of the season due to injury. So for me the first season was more of a learning one for Harvey, a chance to see her squad and work on who and what would improve it. Move forward to the 2014 season and Laura has surpassed all expectations, her player recruitment has been spot on, introducing players who compliment each other’s style of play and creating a team spirit which is so important in creating match winners. Other notable players that have made a huge impact are Beverly Goebel and Nahomi Kawasumi, who have been as equally damaging to the opposition as they were when playing for Japanese champions INAC Kobe.
Despite their huge success at Arsenal Ladies, Laura Harvey and Kim Little have been previously overlooked for FIFA World Player and World Coach awards. The great thing about the NWSL is the wider audience the players and managers get to showcase their talents to. In return, I hope they will be recognised on a global level for their impressive season.
Former Brighton and Hove Albion and Sussex footballer. Working with Women’s Soccer United to increase awareness and promote the female game to a global audience.