De Souza Joins Barcelona

03.02.2004

UB Barcelona have strengthened their squad with the arrival of 21-year-old Brazilian international forward Erika de Souza.

De Souza has been added to the roster in an attempt to solve the problems in Barcelona's interior play caused mainly by the controversial departure of Bosnian Rajiza Brcaninovic earlier in the season.

"She is a young player and very strong," said Barcelona coach Carme Lluveras.

"She will give us some more intensity in out play under the basket.

"Erika is the first natural forward who has come since Brcaninovic's departure and because she is so young she will bring in energy and combativeness, although because she is young she does lack experience," Lluveras added.

Barcelona, second in Group A of the FIBA Europe League for Women, also trail Ros Casares by three games in the Spanish league.

Although De Souza is only 21, the last 18 months have seen her claim a WNBA with the Los Angeles Sparks, a Hungarian title with Mizo-Pecs and a Brazilian league crown with Sao Paolo/Guaru.

She took a silver medal in the World Under-21 Championships held in Croatia last year and gold in the American pre-Olympic event.

De Souza was in Brazil's 2002 World Championship squad in China, and she's expected to play a key role in the Olympics.


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