W-LEAGUE: Get to know Megan Oyster

Number 4 for Newcastle Jets Women is American import Megan Oyster.

The 24-year-old has been devoting her love and passion to the beautiful game for the last “20 years and counting”.

Her football career has included a considerable amount of travelling over the past 20 years, including visits to England, France, Brazil, Japan and Germany. Her travels began at seven years of age, playing for the Windy City Pride, her local team in her home town in Chicago, Illinios, or as Megan explains the “mid-west part of America”.

In 2011, Oyster began University in Los Angeles and played football for the University of California (UCLA) at the age of 17.

“I chose to go there because it is one of the top Universities for soccer in the country,” Oyster said.

“There are previous soccer players who graduated from UCLA and are members of the USA team and play in the in the Professional Soccer League (National Women’s Soccer League [NWSL]).”

“I knew UCLA would give me everything I needed to take me to the next level,” she explained.

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And take her to the next level it did. In 2013, following her early graduation from UCLA with a degree in Social Sciences, Oyster was drafted for a NWSL signing with Washington Spirit, just as she had hoped and worked for.

Megan first heard about the Westfield W-League from her Washington Spirit teammates, Angela Salem, Tori Huster and Katherine Reynolds --- all previous players of Jets Women. With their help, she was able to contact coach Craig Deans and make the dream happen.

Oyster was signed for the 2015/16 Season and couldn’t wait to come back this campaign.

“I like playing for the Jets because I love the coaching staff and the girls,” Oyster said.

“They’re so welcoming and it’s a great environment to be in, I also really love the city.”

“We were so close last year to making playoffs and with a year more of experience for this young team we will have a better chance of achieving this season.”

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Deans was equally as eager to get Oyster back in his squad for this season.

“Obviously, I wanted her back this year for her character and her persona --- last year Megan brought a lot to the team on and off the pitch.”

“I enjoy working with her --- she’s determined to get better, she’s always asking questions and it’s clear that she wants to improve as a player and I want to help her achieve this goal,” Deans concluded.

ON THE FIELD:
Positioned as the Jets centre back, Oyster remains cool, calm and collected at any point in the game, which is imperative to her role, particularly when it comes to organising her teammates. Her confidence in her position and strength on the ball is often on display.
Megan also has the ability to put away a beautiful free kick. She showed this skill last season and has already proved she’s still got it as seen in round 2 against Melbourne Victory when Oyster placed a swift goal into the back of the net from a free kick.

OFF THE FIELD:
Oyster is an avid traveller --- “I love exploring new cities. It’s always fun to find a new, unique coffee shop or restaurant,” she explained. When Megan is in Newcastle she loves to spend her time “taking advantage of the weather and going to all of the beautiful beaches!”