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Down Under! Ireland international O'Sullivan seals move to Australia after stellar campaign in North Carolina

Cork midfielder Denise O’Sullivan has joined Canberra United as the club’s guest player for 2018/19.

O'Sullivan celebrates winning the National Women's Soccer League in September.
O'Sullivan celebrates winning the National Women's Soccer League in September.

FRESH OFF HELPING North Carolina Courage claim the National Women’s Soccer League in the United States, Ireland international Denise O’Sullivan will make a switch Down Under.

The Cork native has signed a deal with Australian side Canberra United in the nation’s capital, joining as a guest player.

O’Sullivan enjoyed one of her most successful seasons to date in 2018, helping NC Courage to a league title, as well as being named her side’s Most Valuable Player (MVP) for her commanding performances in midfield.

Last month she helped the US side to a 3-0 victory over Portland Thorns to secure the title, meaning O’Sullivan had claimed league championships in all of Ireland, Scotland, and the United States.

Denise O'Sullivan and Jackie Groenen O'Sullivan in action for Ireland against Holland in a European Championships qualifier. Source: Bryan Keane/INPHO

The 24-year-old Cork native joined the club in July 2017 following stays at Peamount United, Cork City and Glasgow City, moving to North Carolina following one season with Houstan Dash.

Australia becomes the fourth country the 24-year-old Ireland international has played in since 2011. “Delighted to have signed with @CanberraUnited as a guest player for the @WLeague 2018/19 season. Excited for this opportunity,” the player tweeted on Thursday.

O’Sullivan has made over 60 appearances for Ireland since making her international debut in 2011, with the player arriving in Canberra this week.

I’m really excited to have signed for Canberra United,” she said. “I have heard great things about the club from players who have been here in the past and I am looking forward to the experience.”

“Speaking to Heather Garriock [head coach] before my arrival I got a really good feel for the club and am confident it will be a good fit for me, and I’ve heard plenty of good things about Canberra as a place to live too.”

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Screen Shot 2018-10-18 at 08.13.57 O'Sullivan won a league title win NC Courage in 2018 and was named the club's MVP.

The midfielder said she hoped to build on her league-winning campaign in North Carolina earlier this year.

“This season has been amazing with the Courage,” she said, “and I’m hoping to bring my form and continue it here, and to test myself in another major league.

“I have been a part of the senior national team since I was 17 years old and have played for a number of clubs as well.

“I’ve played with and against some of the best players in the world and have learnt a lot from top coaches, and I’m excited to bring those experiences to Canberra and make an impact while also learning more from new people in the Westfield W-League.”

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Aaron Gallagher

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