KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Debinha is coming to Kansas City.
Ten days after Sporting Kansas City was linked to one of men's soccer’s biggest stars, the Kansas City Current landed one of the biggest names in the women’s game, announcing the signing of free-agent midfielder Débora Cristiane de Oliveira.
Known simply as Debinha, the 31-year-old Brazilian star signed a two-year deal through 2024 with a third-year option, the club announced.
“We are thrilled to welcome Debinha to Kansas City,” co-owners Angie and Chris Long said in a statement Monday. “Debinha is one of the most talented, accomplished, and well-known players in the world. Her name is synonymous with excellence. We can’t wait for Kansas City to have the special opportunity to watch Debinha play and cheer her on.”
Debinha has scored 42 goals in 115 appearances for the North Carolina Courage from 2017-22 and also has netted 57 goals in 129 appearances for Brazil’s national team. She’s competed in the Olympics twice and the FIFA Women’s World Cup once.
“As a professional athlete, I always want to get better and to be on a competitive team that fights for titles, with excellent professionals,” Debinha said in a statement from the club. “I'm sure it will help me in that goal and Kansas City showed that last season. The plan that the club has shown me left me really motivated, because of the entire training facility and the construction of a stadium for a women's team. All of this made me want to be part of it and made me think about being here today. I'm happy for this new journey that is just beginning.”
Debinha was a 2022 NWSL Best XI pick and made the NWSL Second XI in 2018. She was the NWSL Championship Game MVP in 2019 and won NWSL Challenge Cup MVP each of the last two seasons.
After signing Debinha, the Courage reached the NWSL Championship Game in three consecutive seasons from 2017-19, winning titles in the final two seasons.
Fellow midfielder Sam Mewis and forward Lynn Williams, who the Kansas City acquired via trade before last season, were Debinha’s teammates on those Courage teams.
The Current finished as the NWSL runner-up last season in the club’s second year of existence.
“Debinha is one of the best players in the world and we are so excited to have her in Kansas City,” Current general manager Camille Levin Ashton said in a statement. “She's a force on the pitch and has shown that over the last decade. She will be a tremendous contributor to the team, and we are happy to have her on our side."
Debinha also has played professionally in her native Brazil, Norway and China.