American Central Defender Leah Scarpelli joins Roar

Brisbane Roar’s 2023/24 Liberty A-League squad has been boosted by the signing of exciting youngster Leah Scarpelli.  

Scarpelli or ‘Scarps’ as she is known, played college football for Penn State University for one year before joining Florida Gulf Coast University from 2020-2022. She then got the opportunity to play overseas for Portuguese giants Sporting Lisbon where she spent seven months.   

The 21-year-old will bolster the defence, after previous stints with the USA Women’s Youth National Team from the U15 team to the U19 team.  

Scarpelli brings versatility to the squad, having grown up playing central midfield and left midfield before eventually falling into a strong centre-back role.  

“I’m so excited, I have never been to Australia before, but I have talked to so many people who have and heard great things about it. I’m so excited to play in the A-League,” Scarpelli said.  

Through her time spent in college football and in Portugal, she believes these experiences have developed her as a player as she joins the Liberty A-League. 

“It was amazing, I am so grateful for the experience and Portugal was a beautiful country, I was grateful to be a part of their culture and also learn a bit of Portuguese along the way,” Scarpelli said.  

“I’ve played for a lot of different teams growing up, some club teams, academy teams, national teams, college teams, and every team that I’ve played for have had a different style of play. I think playing for multiple different teams growing up at different levels has helped me become the player I am today.”  

“I’m most looking forward to absolutely everything. I am so excited to meet all the girls, I’ve done a scroll through Instagram trying to get to know the team a bit more. I’m so excited, I just want to help the team any way that I can.” 

Head Coach Garrath McPherson looks forward to welcoming Scarpelli to the Brisbane Roar family.  

“I’m excited to see her integrate into our city and feel like part of our story. She has huge potential that has been recognised in selection in youth USWNT squads and a bright future ahead of her in the game,” McPherson said.  

“Leah has achieved success, winning trophies in her college career. This mindset has been a key factor in our recruitment strategy for this season. She will be an asset to our locker room.”