A Breakdown of the Women's Super League January Transfer Window
The January Women's Super League transfer window is now over, but not without its share of drama. Here's a breakdown of all the moves you may have missed:
Tottenham was busy during this window. Rehanne Skinner's team started the new year off by breaking the British transfer record with their purchase of Chelsea's Beth England. It's estimated that the final price was around 250,00 pounds, trumping the previous record of 200,000 pounds, the price paid by Chelsea to Manchester United for Lauren James.
With Tottenham struggling to score goals this season, the addition of England will be very welcome. She's a seasoned striker, as she was Chelsea's top goal scorer in the 2020-21 season. The move was also in England's favor as she looks to secure a spot on the Lionesses' 2023 World Cup roster. It's also likely she'll receive significantly more playing time under Skinner than what Emma Hayes gave her the past season.
Another shocking announcement by the Spurs was the signing of Mana Iwabuch on a loan deal until the end of the season from their across-the-city rival, Arsenal.
Speaking of Arsenal, long-time Gunner Jordan Nobbs ended her 12-year spell with the club with a move to Aston Villa. The midfielder won three WSL titles during her time there and has 69 international caps for England. Along with England, Nobbs is looking for more consistent playing time to try to break into the Lionesses' World Cup squad. Nobbs´contract with Aston Villa is an 18-month deal with the option to extend. Aston Villa also secured the signature of Manchester United midfielder Lucy Staniforth on a free transfer. like Nobbs, Staniforth is joining on an 18-month deal.
Kathrine Kühl and Victoria Pelova both signed for Arsenal while Gio Queiroz was called back by the Gunners from her loan at Everton. Fran Stenson returned after her loan spell at Birmingham City ended. Sabrina D´Angelo joined on a permanent transfer from Vittsjö GIK. After losing both Vivianne Miedema and Beth Mead to long-term injuries, Arsenal was in need of reinforcements and depth.
The Gunners also made headlines when they made a world record bid on Manchester United's Alessia Russo one day before deadline day. The bid is alleged to be around 500,000 pounds and several Arsenal forwards were also offered in exchange for the forward, who is out of contract in the summer. However, Manchester United declined the offers and Head Coach Marc Skinner said he is hopeful that she will sign a new contract.
Manchester United also added three new international players to its roster. It signed Canadian defender Jayde Riviere, an Olympic gold medalist with the Canadian national team in 2021. Estelle Cascarino joined the club on a loan deal for the rest of the season from PSG, and Norwegian midfielder Lisa Naalsund signed a three-year contract to play with the Reds from the Norwegian league champions SK Brann. Naalsund was in high demand from several other European clubs, but Marc Skinner was able to get her signature for around 160,000 pounds.
Leicester and Brighton & Hove Albion F.C.
There was a lot of shuffling on the bottom half of the table as Leicester and Brighton & Hove Albion F.C. added several new players to their roster. The newly appointed manager for the Seagulls, Jens Scheuer, stayed busy during the January window. Two Americans, Zoe Morse from the Chicago Red Stars and Brianna Visalli from the Houston Dash joined from the NWSL. Norway defender Guro Bergsvand was the first signing of the window as she joined from SK Brann. Bergsvand was accompanied by her Toppserien rival Dejana Stefanovic from Vålerenga, who came second in the Norwegian league behind SK Brann. Australian goalkeeper Lydia Williams also signed from PSG.
With the new signings, Scheuer has made reinforcements in every position on the field as Brighton looks to steer clear from the relegation spot and build a stronger team. Scheuer stated that the additions of Morse and Bergsvand are particularly important as they both helped their former teams immensely by stabilizing the defense and managing a low record of goals allowed in a season.
Newly promoted Liverpool F.C. started their campaign off with a 2-1 win against current champions Chelsea and are currently sitting eighth on the table. Matt Beard went shopping in the NWSL and came back with three new additions: Miri Taylor from Angel City F.C., Fuka Nagano from North Carolina Courage, and Gemma Bonner from Racing Louisville. Bonner was the captain at Racing Louisville and may replace Gilly Flaherty in terms of leadership. Danish youngster Sofie Lundgaard also joined on a permanent deal from Fortuna Hjørring while Natasha Dowie was signed on loan from Reading until the end of the season. The Australian fullback scored three goals in the 2022 Damallsvenskan season. Fellow Australian Remy Siemens has also been recruited on a permanent deal. Siemens is a striker from Sydney F.C. Having recruited three defenders and a striker, Leicester manager Willie Kirk has also brought in reinforcements in the goal as Janina Leitzig joins the club on loan from Bayern Münich until the end of the season. Kirk has assembled a young team and is positive that they will improve during the second half of the season and stay in the top flight.
Newly promoted Liverpool F.C. started their campaign off with a 2-1 win against current champions Chelsea and are currently sitting eighth on the table. Matt Beard went shopping in the NWSL and came back with three new additions: Miri Taylor from Angel City F.C., Fuka Nagano from North Carolina Courage, and Gemma Bonner from Racing Louisville. Bonner was the captain at Racing Louisville and may replace Gilly Flaherty in terms of leadership. Danish youngster Sofie Lundgaard also joined on a permanent deal from Fortuna Hjørring while Natasha Dowie was signed on loan from Reading until the end of the season.
Full list of transfers
IN: Maika Hamano (INAC Kobe)
OUT: Bethany England (Tottenham Hotspurs), Charlotte Wardlaw (Lewes)
IN: Fran Stenson (Birmingham, loan ended), Sabrina D'Angelo (Vittsjö GIK, permanent) Gio Quieroz (Everton, loan ended), Kathrine Kühl (Nordsjælland, permanent), Victoria Pelova (Ajax, permanent)
OUT: Jordan Nobbs (Aston Villa, permanent), Mana Iwabuchi (Tottenham, loan)
IN: Lucy Staniforth (Man Utd, permanent), Jordan Nobbs (Arsenal, permanent)
OUT: Izzy Goodwin (Coventry Utd, permanent), Olivia McLoughlin (Birmingham City, loan)
Brighton Hove & Albion
IN: Lydia Williams (PSG, permanent), Zoe Morse (Chicago, permanent), Brianna Visalli (Houston, permanent) Dejana Stefanovic (Vålerenga, permanent), Guro Bergsvand (SK Brann, permanent)
IN: Sara Holmgaard (Fortuna Hjørring, loan ended), Clare Wheeler (Fortuna Hjørring, permanent)
OUT: Gio Quieroz (Arsenal, loan ended)
IN: Georgia Eaton-Collins (free agent, permanent), Courtney Nevin (Hammarby IF, loan) Janina Leitzig (Bayern, loan), Remy Siemsen (Sydney F.C., permanent)
OUT: Connie Scoffield (Coventry United, loan), Natasha Flint (Celtic, loan)
IN: Miri Taylor (Angel City, permanent), Fuka Nagano (North Carolina, permanent), Sofie Lundgaard (Fortuna Hjørring, permanent), Gemma Bonner (Racing Louisville, permanent), Natasha Dowie (loan)
Out: Gilly Flaherty (retired)
OUT: Ruby Mace (Leicester, loan), Khiara Keating (Coventry United, loan)
IN: Lisa Naalsund (Brann, permanent), Jayde Riviere (AFC Ann Arbor, permanent), Estelle Cascarino (PSG, loan)
OUT: Jade Moore (Reading, loan), Grace Clinton (Bristol City, loan), Lucy Staniforth (Aston Villa, loan)
IN: Jade Moore (Man Utd, loan), Esther Mayi Kith (permanent)
IN: Beth England (Chelsea, permanent), Mana Iwabuchi (Spurs, loan)
OUT: Esther Morgan (Sunderland, loan), Gracier Pearse (Bristol City, loan)
IN: Amalie Thestrup (PSV, loan), Anouk Denton (Louisville Cardinals, permanent), Amber Tysiak (Oud-Heverlee Leuven, permanent), Shannon Cooke (Louisiana State University, permanent)
OUT: Grace Garrad (Stabæk, permanent), Claudia Walker (Birmingham, permanent), Alex Hennessey (free agent, permanent), Thea Kyvåg (LSK Kvinner, permanent)