Sun | Sep 19, 2021

‘She deserves it’

Busby sees Shaw’s Man City move as reward for three-year growth

Published:Friday | June 18, 2021 | 1:08 AMDaniel Wheeler/Staff Reporter
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National senior women’s football team head coach, Hubert Busby Jr, says that striker Khadija Shaw’s move to Women’s Super League (WSL) side Manchester City is the culmination of the strides she has made over the last three years. The club...

National senior women’s football team head coach, Hubert Busby Jr, says that striker Khadija Shaw’s move to Women’s Super League (WSL) side Manchester City is the culmination of the strides she has made over the last three years.

The club officially announced the signing of Shaw, 24, yesterday on a three-year deal subject to her getting her work permit and international clearance.

Shaw, who was at French club Bordeaux for the last two years, made her departure official last Friday after a strong campaign last season, finishing as the league’s top scorer with 22 goals.

“It’s a great move for her and it’s an accumulation, obviously, for all the hard work and what she’s done over the last three years; obviously, the World Cup and then the two great years she had in France,” Busby told The Gleaner. “And so, she is rewarded with a move to one of the best and biggest clubs in the world.”

In her two seasons in France, Shaw scored 32 league goals, including 10 in her debut year in 2019-20. Her performance last season put her on City’s radar after they finished the last WSL season as runners-up.

Shaw said that it is a move that she relishes, having grown up as a fan of the club.

“I wanted to be tested and there is so much experience in the team here, so I know I will learn a lot from everybody around me,” Shaw said on the club’s website. “I’ve always watched the English game and it’s something that I’ve always wanted to be a part of. The Barclays FA WSL is growing and developing tremendously and I feel as though this is the perfect move for me.”

MOTIVATION FOR THEYOUNGER GENERATION

Busby says Shaw’s arrival signals championship intent from Man City for both domestic and continental honours next season. But for him, it not only represents a milestone in her career, but is also giving motivation to the next generation of players that the pathway to the elite level in the women’s game is possible.

“The reality is that this current crop of players, just like the ones before them, are currently pioneers for the next generation,” he said. “They are leading the way and obviously, this move continues to speak to that.

“Here’s a girl from Spanish Town heading to Manchester City, one of the biggest, if not the biggest, club in the world. Anything is possible, so why not dream big? It’s just remarkable for all young girls, and all young players in Jamaica in general.”

Man City Managing Director Gavin Makel says that he is confident that they will get the best out of Shaw, whom he described as “one of the most exciting up-and-coming talents within the women’s game”.

“Her goalscoring record over the last couple of seasons is up there with some of the best in the world, and we hope that she will continue that in the sky blue of Manchester City,” Makel told the club’s website.