Portuguese international defender Matilde Fidalgo has signed a two-year deal to join Manchester City from July 1 after the departure of Abbie McManus.
Fidalgo, 25, will wear the number 35 shirt when she joins from SC Braga – the current champions of the Portuguese national women’s league – Liga BPI.
Fidalgo began her career at CF Benfica where she captained the team and won back to back league and cup double titles in the 14/15 and 15/16 seasons.
In 2017, she joined Sporting CP helping the team win the national league and Portuguese Women’s Cup that season before moving on to SC Braga last season.
The right back has 43 international caps for Portugual and was named the country’s best female player by Sindicato dos Jogadores Profissionais de Futebol (SJPF, the Portuguese Professional Football Players Union) aged just 22.
She was also named in the Portuguese Liga BPI Team of the Year at the Quinas de Ouro awards held by the Portuguese Football Federation in March 2018.
Commenting on her move to Manchester City, the current holders of the Continental Tyres Cup and SSE Women’s FA Cup, Fidalgo said:
“It feels like a dream coming true.
“I was overwhelmed when I heard that this was going to be a reality and I am really happy to be here.
“The league is super competitive and that’s something I was looking for and the team is huge.
“Everyone knows how big Manchester City is and I’m really happy to be here.
“I would really like to improve on my technical skills… [and] being able to play at a very high pace in every game is going to make me a stronger, more stable player.
“Playing in a big team like Man City, the targets are always winning every trophy that we’re going to play for.”
City Manager Nick Cushing added:
“Matilde came on our radar about a year ago we’ve been tracking her performances for a while now.
“She’s a committed defender with a strong desire to win every game she is playing in and that winning mentality will be key next season when we’re competing on all four fronts.
“We’re delighted to have her at Manchester City and excited to help take her game to the next level.”
Bernardo Silva welcomes his cousin Matilde Fidalgo to Manchester City
Fidalgo is a cousin of current men’s team midfielder Bernardo Silva – both share the same great grandparents – and Silva welcomed his cousin to the club.
Silva wished her good luck at the club, saying: “I’m very happy to have you at Man City with us. All the best and see you soon!”
City have missed the regular impact of a specialist right sided full back since the departure of Lucy Bronze in 2017, with Abbie McManus and Gemma Bonner filling in last season.
McManus recently joined newly promoted WSL rivals Manchester United while the club also today confirmed the departure of Scottish winger Claire Emslie who was out of contract.
Emslie will join Orlando Pride after the World Cup subject to visa.
Striker Nikita Parris has already left the club to join European Champions Olympique Lyonnais.