General views of Academy Stadium Manchester City Women v Chelsea Women - SSE Women's FA Cup Semi Final football match, Academy Stadium, Manchester, UK - 14 Apr 2019 Photo: Lynne Cameron for The FA

Manchester City’s new signing Abby Dahlkemper praises ‘world-class’ opponents in England

Ahead of facing Canada at the 2021 SheBelieves Cup, United States international Abby Dahlkemper hopes that her recent move to Manchester City will help her improve further on the international stage.

The 27-year-old, who joined Manchester City in the January transfer window, has admitted that she has been thrown into the deep end upon her arrival in the Barclays Women’s Super League. The Cityzens centre-back has started the last three games for her new club which included a pulsating Manchester derby.

Speaking in the United States’ pre-match press conference ahead of the Canada game, in which FAWSL Full-Time were present, Dahlkemper praised the challenges on offer in the Barclays FA Women’s Super League.

“I’m very thankful to be given the opportunity to play over in England with Manchester City” she said.

“I can’t say enough good things about the team, the environment and the coaches.

“It has been good, there’s world-class players on so many teams over there, so each game presents a new challenge.

“I’m just really excited to be there and have gotten minutes with my new team and for us to be getting results is huge and it’s going to be a really good title race, hopefully down to the end.”

Dahlkemper has previously stated the importance of joining the club to help her develop her footballing abilities in terms of ball possession and as a centre-back playing a crucial role in building attacks from the back. United States head coach Vlatko Andonovski is hoping to turn The Stars and Stripes in to a sophisticated attacking side with Dahlkemper being a key part of that vision. The defender was asked by FAWSL Full-Time whether the move across the pond will help extend her international career and bring more success to the United States.

Dahlkemper said “I’d like to hope so, I’m striving to be the best player/person I can be and playing oversees presented a new challenge for me, that was exciting and a challenge I couldn’t pass up. I’m learning a lot.”

At yesterday’s England media day, Dahlkemper’s Manchester City teammate Alex Greenwood was discussing the issues surrounding the responsibility of social media firms in dealing with online abuse. Dahlkemper wanted to reaffirm the importance of addressing such issues.

“Having conversations with teammates and becoming educated, continuing to learn about the social injustices is really important” she said.

“Hopefully I try to use my platform as best as I can, and speak up about things I feel strongly about.

“The most important thing is that we are having hard conversations.”

In a world pandemic, moving between club and country isn’t easy. The centre-back believes that her athletic mindset has helped her deal with the tough conditions imposed across the world, allowing her to reflect positively about her experiences.

“Being challenged and pushed out of your comfort zone on and off the field is a good thing” said Dahlkemper. “I have experienced that in the WSL.

“Hopefully when COVID is a little bit more under wraps, I am able to experience the European life.

“I’ve definitely had to adjust in many ways, but I’m just looking at that as a growth and developing a better mindset. ”

Dahlkemper and the United States will begin their SheBelieves Cup campaign against Canada at midnight tonight.

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