Rose Lavelle says she hopes to make her hero and mentor Neil Bradford proud, by achieving success in England.

The United States star and World Cup winner is about to embark on a new chapter of her career, making the move overseas for the first time to join City.

Ready to take the FA Women’s Super League by storm, the midfielder says she is relishing the challenge of testing herself in a new country with an unfamiliar culture and playing style, especially in the homeland of her very first coach.

Former Bristol City player Bradford coached Lavelle at junior level back in her hometown of Cincinnati, Ohio, playing a key role in the playmaker’s development, light-heartedly insisting his student would play for England one day!

Of course, Lavelle would go on to taste international glory with her native America but sadly, Bradford passed away before he could see his protégée don the famous Stars and Stripes.

Although she will not be sporting the iconic white of the Lionesses, Lavelle says she would love to flourish in England in tribute to her coach and friend.

“I said this before but when I was growing up, he would always say I would play for the English national team,” she explained, “but I was like: ‘I can’t!’


“He gave me a whole England warm up tracksuit, so it seems fitting I am playing in England.

“I messaged his parents before the news got released and they were super excited. I hope he is proud.

“I think I knew at some point I wanted to go overseas. I just didn’t know when. Then this opportunity with Man City came up and it felt like a great time to go.

“Pandemic or not, Man City is a great place to be at. It’s an opportunity I didn’t want to pass up.”

One of the stars of the USA’s World Cup success last summer and a scorer in the Final, Lavelle has been the talk of women’s football.

Although she could have had her pick of clubs, the 25-year-old asserted she always felt City was the right fit for her.

“The Club is one of the best in the world,” she added.

“The resource they put on both men and women’s teams definitely drew me there. There’s a lot of resource and support - that’s a great environment and something I felt I needed.

“I spoke to Gareth [Taylor] about how he wants us to play, how the girls are and how he sees me fitting into the equation. He will push me to reach my potential and get better. I am excited to play under him.

“I like to think I’m a creative player. I hope I can bring some flair and playmaking in the final third.

“There’s a lot of great attacking players I hope I can combine with. The midfield is really fun - Jill Scott, Keira Walsh, Caroline Weir… it’s going to be fun.

“I’ve had the opportunity to play against them on the international stage. I’m excited to play with them.

“It’s a talented team and by no means am I going walk in and play immediately – I have to earn that spot.

“I think the FA WSL is a league that’s getting better each year. The clubs are investing in women’s game.

“We are seeing that all over the place too. Overall it’s an exciting time for women’s soccer. For me I wanted to experience a different challenge, a different league and playing style - this felt like the perfect fit.

“And the Champions League and chances to win lots of titles, was another factor. I feel like growing up and watching the Champions League, I never felt I could play myself but the opportunity presented itself. It’s a huge challenge. To win it would be incredible.

“So, with the resources they provide, the training environment and the competitions, that seemed like the complete package.”

Lavelle’s signing announcement follows in the footsteps of compatriot and fellow World Cup Winner Sam Mewis’ arrival = and City’s newest recruit is thrilled by the prospect of experiencing the journey with her best friend.

“Me and Sam definitely kept each other in the loop,” she explained. “I don’t think it was the deciding factor – but to have a familiar face is nice. In fact, not just a ‘familiar face’ – she’s one of my best friends.

“I talked to [former City player and US star] Carli Lloyd too, who has had nothing but good things to say about her time at City.”


Asked of her Manchester knowledge, Lavelle added she is excited to explore her new city – but is not quite prepared for the weather!

“I heard about the rain!” she laughed. “I have one rain jacket I think - I might need to buy a couple more!

“I honestly do not know much about the city. I feel I will get to experience this huge football culture where everyone lives and breathes soccer. I’m excited.

“I have a lot of exploring to do when I get there! I’m sure I’ll look stuff up as I get closer. I have no clue – I have to learn!

“I’m excited about the whole experience. Honestly I’m really excited for the training environment: getting to train with those players, with those facilities...

“Once I get over there and adjust, I will definitely be most excited about the games but right now I want to get training.”