West Ham United sign defender Maz Pacheco
West Ham United is delighted to announce the signing of defender Maz Pacheco.
The 21-year-old moves to the Hammers after two seasons with fellow Barclays FA Women’s Super League side Reading and becomes the Irons’ second new acquisition in less than 24 hours, after goalkeeper Mackenzie Arnold joined on Thursday.
“I’m very excited to join West Ham,” Pacheco told whufc.com. “West Ham is a brand-new team that is still very much at the start of their journey, and I think that’s like I am as well.
“I really like the idea of growing together with the Club and giving everything I can for this shirt. With the players already here, it’s going to be a great group to be around and I can’t wait to get started.”
Head coach Matt Beard, who gave Pacheco her senior debut as a teenager at Liverpool in 2015, is looking forward to working with the left-back at West Ham.
Beard said: “Maz is, first of all, a great person with a fantastic personality. When I was at Liverpool, I gave Maz her debut at 16-years-old, and she was good enough then to play at the top level.
“She is a great attacking full-back and I’m looking forward to continuing her development as a player here. She’s a great talent already and there is a lot more to come from her as well.
She’s young and comes with a lot of WSL experience. We’ve got ourselves a young, English, elite player. The ambition for her now is to get into this West Ham team, play regularly, and hopefully we can help her fulfil her international ambitions too.”
Born in Ormskirk, West Lancashire, Pacheco spent her formative years as a footballer with Liverpool, where the defender was handed her WSL debut as a 16-year-old in March 2015.
The full-back made a further 11 outings for the Reds before joining Doncaster Rover Belles on loan in 2016. Twelve showings and a goal during her loan convinced the Belles to sign Pacheco on a permanent deal in 2017.
Pacheco would make 26 showings across the 2017 and 2017/18 FA WSL 2 seasons for Doncaster, with 30 outings in all competitions, helping the Belles to lift the Women’s Super League Two title.
A transfer to Reading followed for the then-19-year-old in July 2018. Pacheco would play 20 times in all competitions in her debut campaign for the Royals, including 16 outings in the Barclays FA WSL, before adding a further 16 in all competitions last campaign.
At international level, Pacheco has represented England up to Under-21s level and helped the young Lionesses to a third-place finish at the 2018 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup.
Pacheco played in England women’s Under-21s most recent fixture, playing 62 minutes in the 2-0 victory over France at St George’s Park in March.
Everyone at West Ham United would like to welcome Maz to the Club and wish her every success in Claret and Blue.