Moore ‘proud and delighted’ to join United
England international Jade Moore couldn’t help but smile as she described the feeling of signing for Manchester United in her exclusive first interview with the club.
The experienced midfielder was one of the Reds’ three additions on last month’s WSL deadline day, in a move that sees her reunite with Marc Skinner, who she has previously worked with at both Birmingham City and Orlando Pride.
Having most recently applied her trade in the US with the Pride, Jade is now returning to a league that she knows well while continuing to work her way back from a serious knee injury suffered at her previous club.
Her road to recovery is something that she discusses in our sit-down chat, as is her eagerness to help her new team-mates both on and off the pitch, among several other topics, as you can see in the full interview below…
Jade, welcome to Manchester United. How does it feel to sign for this football club?
“Proud, really. I think given what has happened over the last year-and-a-half and what I’ve gone through with my injury - I’ve contemplated retirement with the injury - to be sat here now, having signed for a massive club like this, I’m proud and delighted to be here.”
Talking about your injury, since you mentioned it, how are you?
“Very well. I’m 12 weeks post-surgery, so I’ve still got a bit to go, but I’m in a really good place. My body’s feeling good, mentally and emotionally I’m feeling really good, so fingers crossed the body holds up!”
“Not a lot really, I think he just gives me the confidence that he believes in me. I went over to Orlando to play with him, had a great experience there but we actually never really got started – I worked out we only really had about 12 weeks together – so when the call came and it was something that was put in front of me, I jumped at the opportunity to come to a massive club and continue where we left off, really.”
You’ve been in the WSL before, most recently with Reading, but how do you think the game has changed since you’ve been away?
“I think first and foremost Sky Sports getting involved is a massive, huge win for women’s football. It’s now on in pubs, it’s spoken about a lot more, so I think that’s a huge jump from where it was when I left it, because it wasn’t there then. And just the progression of the women’s game, it’s slowly on that really, really steep arc and it’s only going to get better. So, I think the more teams like United that are involved, the more money that gets pumped in, the game’s only going to grow. It’s an exciting project.”
Tell us about yourself as a player. What can you bring to United?
“I think one of the biggest things that Marc spoke to me about was experience. Obviously, the team’s young, and so my experience of being involved in this league for around ten years [means] I know what it takes to win. I’ve been in some teams not-so much at the top, so I have that underdog mentality, the fight to win and upset big teams. Probably the conversation I had with him is that up to this point in my career, I’ve always been at those teams where every game you have to be at the top of your game, you’re fighting, slogging your guts out. For me I’m probably at that point when I’m thinking about longevity, and how I start to enhance my career and make it last as long as possible. Coming to a big club, where there’s a bigger player pool, they want to bring more talent through, and probably pick and choose games for me as a player, with the injury history that I have. I can use that to my advantage more than anything. I’m really looking forward to altering that side of my perception of having to get through games at 70 per cent, rather than playing games at 100 per cent.”
And in the dressing room, what do you think you can bring to that environment?
“Experience, professionalism. I’ve been in the game a long time – 50 caps for England – and I’ve been in international tournaments, so all of that wealth of experience, and probably just that know-how and nous of how to win, that’s one of the biggest things I can bring to the team. Y’know, the ugly side of the game, what they call the dark arts!”
You come to a team that’s flying in the Women’s Super League and which went unbeaten in December and January. It must be great to come into a side which is in such great form…
“Yeah, definitely. To be honest with you I don’t think it would have mattered for me right now where the form was at with the girls, I think the prospect of the club is a big enough pull. But to come in and to know that the environment’s good, it’s healthy, it’s thriving, that’s something that’s really positive.”
“Yeah, definitely. I think you do have to step back from your career at times and reassess and think, in five years’ time if you’ve retired, where would your regrets have been, and for me it would have been to not have played at a top team in England and I think that’s why this was a big pull for me.”
The United fans are a passionate bunch. What would they expect to see from you, and what would your message be to those fans?
“I think they’ll have seen it, having seen me play against them, and I’ve definitely heard them, so I know how vocal they can be! I think they probably are up there with the best fans in the league, home and away, I think that’s the pull. I think they’re the 12th man. But for me, it’s determination, give 100 per cent, I wear my heart on my sleeve, and I don’t back out of any 50/50 tackles.”