Thorns, Canada star Beckie (knee) to miss WWC

Football

Portland Thorns and Canada women’s national team forward Janine Beckie will miss the upcoming NWSL season and the 2023 Women’s World Cup after tearing the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in her right knee, her club announced Friday.

Beckie suffered the injury on Wednesday during a preseason friendly for the Thorns against the U.S. U-23 women’s youth national team. The 28-year-old will undergo surgery in the coming weeks, the Thorns said.

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“Heartbroken is an understatement,” Beckie said in a statement on social media. “Sadly yesterday doctors confirmed that during Wednesday night’s game I tore my ACL.

“Having worked so hard during off-season for what was set to be one of the biggest seasons of my career, defending the title for Portland Thorns and of course playing in the World Cup for Canada, being out for an extended period of time if a difficult pill to swallow.

“I’ll be supporting my team-mates for both club and country this season and it goes without saying I’ll be back better and stronger than ever.”

The former Manchester City player was part of the Canada team that won Olympic gold in Tokyo in 2021 and has scored 36 goals in 101 appearances at international level.

Beckie was also at the forefront of the team’s recent protest over pay equity and budget cuts before it was announced earlier this month that the players had reached an interim funding agreement with Canada Soccer.

She was set to be a key player in this summer’s World Cup, which will take place in Australia and New Zealand from July 20 to August 20.

The Thorns will begin the defense of the NWSL Championship it won last year at home to the Orlando Pride on March 26.

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