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 NJ/NY Gotham FC

NWSL Standout Sinead Farrelly Announces Retirement

June 7, 2024 - National Women's Soccer League (NWSL)
NJ/NY Gotham FC News Release

HARRISON, NJ - National Women's Soccer League standout and Republic of Ireland midfielder Sinead Farrelly today announced her retirement from professional soccer.

Farrelly has been placed on Gotham FC's season-ending injury due to post-concussive syndrome that will require rehabilitation to resolve. The midfielder was advised by a neurologist to cease playing soccer due to the cumulative head injuries that she has sustained throughout her career, leaving her vulnerable to additional head injuries if she were to continue to play.

"Thank you to Gotham FC and all its staff, my teammates, my family, my people and the fans who kept me on this path when I wanted to turn and run," said Farrelly. "I'd be nowhere without you all. I promise this ending is a gift, a blessing and just the beginning of something new. I am so grateful that this insane chapter even existed at all, let alone end in such a way where I am feeling so fulfilled and at peace. This truly has been so special."

After nearly eight years and announcing her retirement from professional soccer in 2016, Farrelly made a triumphant return to the game by joining Gotham FC as a 2023 preseason training camp non-roster invitee. She earned her way onto the roster and signed a contract with the club in March, then immediately became a game-changer for Gotham FC.

"Coaching Sinead has been one of the highlights of my career," said Gotham FC Head Coach Juan Carlos Amorós. "She is an exceptional player and person, she is a 'magician' on the pitch. She has helped us all to be better, and I am grateful she decided to join us for her comeback. She has proven that anything is possible and has changed the women's game and Gotham FC for the better. She will still be part of the team now and forever part of Gotham FC's history."

The midfielder earned key minutes with the club last season en route to the 2023 NWSL Championship. Across all competitions last season, Farrelly appeared in 23 games with nine starts, recording 1,039 minutes and one assist. In the 2023 NWSL Playoffs, she appeared in every game for the club, playing 68 minutes and recording a successful tackle rate of 72.4%.

"Sinead is truly an exceptional person and we are incredibly grateful to be a part of her journey," said Gotham FC General Manager and Head of Soccer Operations Yael Averbuch West. "It has been one of the greatest honors of my time at Gotham that Sinead chose our club to make her comeback. We are happy to support her and very excited to see her next chapter."

Additionally, her impressive play for Gotham FC last season earned her a spot on the Republic of Ireland National Team for the 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup, where she made her World Cup debut. During the tournament, Farrelly started in all three matches of the group stage, recording 216 minutes.

Prior to making her return with Gotham FC, Farrelly previously played for Kansas City in the league's inaugural season in 2013 season and with the Portland Thorns in 2014 and 2015.

Collegiately, Farrelly excelled at the University of Virginia, where she was twice named a semifinalist for the MAC Hermann Trophy, awarded to the nation's top college soccer player. In her senior season, she recorded 12 goals and 7 assists in 22 games. Among several honors she received that year, Farrelly was named ACC Offensive Player of the Year, NSCAA First Team All American, and the University of Virginia's top female athlete for the 2010-11 season.

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