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Christine Sinclair and Tiffeny Milbrett sign at Vancouver Whitecaps

13 February 2006 13:15

VANCOUVER, Feb 13 (SW) - Vancouver Whitecaps Director of Soccer Operations Bob Lenarduzzi announced the signings of Canadian and US international forwards Christine Sinclair and Tiffeny Milbrett.

“We are extremely delighted to have two of the world's best attacking players come to Vancouver,” said Whitecaps Women’s Head Coach Bob Birarda. “To hear Christine Sinclair’s enthusiasm about coming home to play is a dream for a coach, and then to have an opportunity to add one of the most prolific goal scorers in US National Team history, Tiffeny Milbrett, is simply incredible.”

Christine Sinclair, 22, returns to Vancouver after a three year hiatus. The 5’9” native of Burnaby, BC last played for Whitecaps (then Breakers) in 2002 when she led the team in scoring with seven goals and two assists in only four games. Sinclair also played during the 2001 season contributing two goals and four assists in six games.

Prior to playing for the Whitecaps franchise Sinclair had become a feared striker on Canada’s National Team, a team she made her debut for on March 12, 2000 at the age of 16. Two years later Sinclair was a prominent figure on Canada’s 2002 Gold Cup and U-19 Teams. During the Gold Cup Sinclair helped Canada to a second place finish co-leading the tournament with seven goals. Also in 2002, as a member of the inaugural FIFA U-19 Women’s World Championship, Sinclair was awarded the Golden Boot as top scorer and the Golden Ball as MVP after scoring a tournament leading 10 goals which helped Canada to a second place finish. To date Sinclair has accumulated 71 caps (6th all-time), and netted 53 goals (2nd all-time) for Canada’s National Team.

At the collegiate level Sinclair recently completed her four-year career at the University of Portland where she graduated with a 3.75 grade point average in Life Science. While attending Portland Sinclair was also in top form on the pitch, leading the Pilots to an undefeated season and the national championship. In her senior year, Sinclair scored 39 goals, breaking the previous single-season record of 37 set in 1987. For her efforts Sinclair received the Missouri Athletic Club’s (MAC) Hermann Trophy – awarded to the top female and male Division 1 college soccer players – for the second consecutive year. The four-time All-American was also named the West Coast Conference (WCC) Player of the Year for the third time in her career. Sinclair finished her career at Portland with 110 career goals and 252 points which ranks her second and fourth in NCAA history respectively.

Also in 2005, Sinclair was named Canada Soccer’s Female Player of the Year, made the short list for the 2005 FIFA Player of the Year, and was a finalist for the Lou Marsh Award – given to Canada’s top athlete of the year.

Tiffeny Milbrett, 33, comes to the Whitecaps as one of the most productive goal scorers in US National Team history. The 5’2” native of Portland, Oregon, has amassed 204 appearances (fifth all-time), 100 goals (fourth all-time) and 61 assists (third all-time) with the US Women’s National Team.

Prior to her international success, Milbrett attended the University of Portland from 1990-1995 where she majored in Communications Management and minored in German. As a member of the Pilots Women’s Soccer Team, Milbrett was a finalist for the MAC Hermann Trophy in 1991, 1992 and 1994. She was also a three-time NSCAA All American and was the WCC Offensive Player of the Year in 1992 and 1994. Upon graduation Milbrett was the institution's all-time leader in goals with 103, assists with 40 and has since been named to Soccer America's College Team of the Decade for the 1990s.

Milbrett, who was a member of the US U-20 team that won the International Women’s Tournament in Montricoux, France in 1993, played a handful of games for the senior club up until 1995 when she earned 21 caps and helped the USA Women’s World Cup team finish third in the FIFA Women’s World Cup. In 1996, she became a bona fide starter for the US team that won the 1996 Olympic gold medal in Atlanta, scoring the game winning goal in the gold medal game against China. In 1999, she was the leading scorer on the US team that won the World Cup, and in 2000 she helped the team obtain silver in the Sydney Olympic Games.

In 2001, Milbrett was one of three nominees for the first-ever FIFA Women’s Player of the Year. And in the 2003 Women’s World Cup, Milbrett played in all six matches including the third place game against Canada in which her goal helped secure the win for the U.S.A.

Milbrett began her professional career in Japan playing with the Shiroki Serena of the Women’s J League from 1995-1997. In 2001, Milbrett played an important role in the start-up of the New York Power of the Women’s United Soccer Association (WUSA). In WUSA’s first year, Milbrett led the league in scoring with 16 goals and was named the league’s Most Valuable Player as well as Offensive Player of the Year. During the league’s three year existence Milbrett led the Power in scoring every year and was the leagues all-time leading scorer when the league folded in 2003 with 31 goals and 15 assists. Last summer Milbrett suited-up for Sunnanå SK of the Swedish First Division.

Sinclair and Milbrett are slated to travel to England next week to join Chelsea LFC of the F.A. Women's Premier League for the remainder of their season. They are then scheduled to join the Whitecaps in May.

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