New Thorns Tiffany Weimer and Casey Ramirez ready to contribute immediately
Weimer and Ramirez join the Thorns after just concluding the 2012-13 season together for Danish Elitedivisionen club Fortuna Hjørring, where they helped lead the club to a second place finish.
Thorns FC head coach Cindy Parlow Cone says they didn’t originally plan on acquiring two players from the same team, but it ended up being the perfect fit.
“We came to an agreement with Weimer before Casey Ramirez,” said Cone. “Then we were looking for another outside back, because I still want to be able to build out of the back a little bit more than we’re doing. I needed someone that was very technical and comfortable on the ball.”
Cone says Weimer and Ramirez are both very skilled players who bring flexibility to the Thorns.
“Tiff is a tremendous player,” said Cone of the veteran forward who scored 14 goals across all competitions with Fortuna Hjørring last season. “She’s got great mobility. She’s very good technically. She’s a very good finisher. She can play anywhere in our midfield or up front.”
WATCH: Tiffany Weimer Highlights
“Casey Ramirez is an outstanding outside back,” added Cone. “She could probably play in outside mid, as well.”
So far the transition has been a smooth one for the players, due in large part to an overwhelmingly kind welcome.
“It’s been great so far,” said Weimer. “The coaching staff, the players, the front office staff, everyone has been incredibly welcoming, including the fans. The fans have been amazing. You can’t really ask for a better welcoming to a new team, especially midseason. It’s not easy to come in, in general.”
It certainly helps that Weimer and Ramirez have played with several Thorns players in the past. Weimer played with Allie Long at Penn State University and Ramirez played with Courtney Wetzel, Jessica Shufelt, and Kat Williamson for the Ottawa Fury.
“It makes it a lot easier,” said Ramirez. “I felt like I had a group to start with and the girls have been so nice. It’s easy to mesh and it makes the transition and the nervousness a lot easier for me.”
Weimer says that was one of the factors she considered when making the choice to sign with Portland.
“Looking at the roster, they’re all players that are good players on the field,” said Weimer, “but they’re amazing people. Of course that weighs into your decision. Getting a chance to player with [Christine] Sinclair and [Rachel] Buehler and Allie again was something I really couldn’t pass up.”
They say they are quickly working on developing strong communication with their teammates.
“I didn’t even get to train with Sinclair and [Alex] Morgan before our first game,” explained Weimer. “I was trying to learn as we went. Obviously, we have a lot to work on together. I just want to get to know the players as quickly as possible and gel with the team on and off the field in hopes that it shows on the field more.”
While more training sessions and games with the squad, there’s one particular element that helps a great deal after spending last season in Denmark.
“The girls speak English so it’s a great step for me,” joked Ramirez.
Both players made their first appearance for the Thorns against Sky Blue FC on June 22nd. They will have one more road game this weekend against FC Kansas City before they will have the opportunity to play in front of the Thorns FC home crowd.
“I can’t wait,” said Ramirez. “It’s awesome. The fans are amazing and it just looks like a great atmosphere.”