Tottenham Hotspur Women may have lost their American international loanee, but they’re gaining some additional defensive help from home. Today, Spurs Women announced the loan signing of Manchester United and England defender Abbie McManus through the end of the 2020-21 season.
McManus, 28, is a seasoned professional footballer and England international. She played 12 seasons for Manchester City before leaving for United in 2019, and has featured in various roles across the back line, mostly as a central defender. She’s played in two Champions League finals with City.
McManus was displaced this season in United’s lineup by Millie Turner and Amy Turner. This season at United she’s made only five starts for about 400 minutes of action, averaging about 2.2 T+I/90.
McManus was a member of the 2019 England World Cup team under Phil Neville, making three appearances in that tournament. She has 17 caps overall for the Lionesses.
This loan is quite obviously in order for McManus to get first team minutes in order to keep her place in the England squad under... well, whoever is taking over for Neville, and that’s to Tottenham’s benefit. McManus has history with Rehanne Skinner, having worked with her in the England setup, and she will almost certainly walk into Spurs’ starting lineup, though I couldn’t tell you with certainty which of Shelina Zadorsky or Karrys Harrop she would displace. Regardless, McManus will be Tottenham’s first England international that I’m aware of, and that’s pretty exciting.
In a statement on Spurs’ website, McManus had this to say about joining Spurs:
“I’m really excited to be joining Tottenham Hotspur, a big club with big ambitions.
“The team is in great form, winning three games on the bounce, and hopefully we can continue to build on those performances in the next few games and get into the top half of the table.
“I worked with Rehanne recently when she was Assistant Coach for England and I’m looking forward to working with her again. I’m excited to be here and can’t wait to get started.”
There are still ways that Spurs can improve under Rehanne Skinner — they still need a boost in central midfield — but this is a pretty exciting development. Welcome to Tottenham, Abbie!