PHILADELPHIA, Pa – Former US Women’s National Team goalkeeper, Jill Loyden, has joined former teammate Heather Mitts on the Philadelphia Women’s Pro Soccer leadership team. Loyden was part of the 2011 silver medal World Cup team and an alternate for the 2012 Olympic gold medal team. She works as a color analyst for the NWSL and at this summer’s Women’s World Cup.
“Jill is one of the highest character, most grounded, inspiring and genuine people I have ever had the pleasure to be teammates with,” said Mitts. “Her leadership will be the foundation for our player pathway. One that prioritizes the mental well-being and character development of our players, if not more so than their performance on the field,” continued Mitts.
While the group’s vision is to build a similar development program to that of the Philadelphia Union, it will be built specifically for the unique needs of the female athlete, will support multi-sport athletes and disrupt the financial barriers for soccer participation in the United States.
Loyden played collegiately at Villanova University, where she earned Big East Goalkeeper of the Year honors for three consecutive seasons as well as NSCAA First-Team All-America her senior year.
A native of Vineland, New Jersey, Loyden went on to play professionally in the NWSL for Sky Blue (now Gotham FC) where she also coached. Loyden was drafted by Saint Louis Athletica of the WPS, which was the predecessor to the NWSL. In 2014 Jill retired from playing professional soccer and began her coaching career when she opened The Keeper Institute headquarters in summer of 2015. Jill has worked with our youth US National Teams as a goalkeeper coach, and also served as a color analyst for ESPN.
Not only does TKI have a team of experienced and knowledgeable goalkeeper coaches, but also leadership developers, strength coaches, and sports psychologists who are all available to provide students with the tools to grow, learn, and perform at their highest level.
Loyden spoke of her involvement in this Philadelphia women’s soccer club, “I am so excited to be part of this lofty endeavor. I believe in this project. I believe in this leadership. I believe this is the perfect collaboration that will bring a lasting impact on players’ lives in the greater Philadelphia area. I look forward to treating people well, developing the person and the player, and keeping joy at the forefront of sport.”