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  • Writer's pictureTone Rasmussen

A Summer Transfer Window to Remember

This summer has been pretty hectic as a women's football supporter. With summer coming to an end also means that the summer transfer window is closed. This is the window that usually falls in a lot of leagues off-season. The summer window tends to have many big changes and signings. Most leagues around the world are in season or just about to start, and a lot of stars have gotten a new home ground.

Chelsea Lands Big

We all know the reigning WSL and FA Cup champions, Chelsea, have been very active during the summer. They have three big new signings: Mia Fishel from Tigres, Ashley Lawrence from PSG, and Catarina Macario from Lyon. They also secured the signings of Lionesses goalkeeper Hannah Hampton from Aston Villa and Belgium international Nicky Evrard.

One of Chelsea's newest recruits, Mia Fishel in her USWNT debut against South Africa on September 24, 2023 in Chicago, Illinois. Photo by Ely Garcia for WSX.

On the opposite side, Magdalena Eriksson said goodbye to Chelsea at last and made the move back to Frauen Bundesliga after spending six years with the London club. This was probably the most bittersweet farewell this season. Eriksson won the league 4 times, the FA Cup four times, the League Cup twice, and also has a Community Shield to her name. She has also been the captain for the past three seasons and will go down in Chelsea history. Ahead of the 19/20 season, Pernille Harder arrived at Kingsmeadow and contributed to 44 goals in 79 appearances. The pair will switch the blue out for red for the upcoming season having signed with Bayern München.

The Gunners Reload

Alessia Russo made headlines in January when Arsenal put in a record-high bid for the striker. Manchester United then declined the offer but eventually had to see her go on a free to one of the biggest WSL rivals. Russo signed for The Gunners in July, right before the start of the World Cup. She has already made her debut for the Gunners in the defeat to Paris FC in the Champions League qualifying rounds.

Arsenal also made headlines when they secured the signature of Australian international Kyra Cooney-Cross from Swedish side Hammarby IF. Cooney-Cross was a part of a dynamic Matilda midfield that saw the Matildas make history in the World Cup and finished fourth. Many big clubs such as Manchester United and Chelsea were in talks with the midfielder but the Australian decided on the Gunners. Arsenal also secured World Cup winner Laia Codina from Barcelona on deadline day.

A World Champion and a Golden Boot Winner to Manchester

Manchester United saw a bunch of players leave during the window. Ona Battle was a foreseen transfer back to her childhood club, Barcelona. Maria Thorisdottir and Sophie Baggaley went to Brighton and Alessia Russo turned down a new contract.

Despite what seemed like a mass exodus from the Red Devils, they were one of the most active clubs in the last week of the window. Manchester United added a World Cup winner in Irene Guerrero and also secured the signature of the Golden Boot winner, Hinata Miyazawa. Brazilian striker Geyse also joined the Red Devils from Barcelona. On the very last day of the transfer window being open, Phallon Tullis-Joyce joined the Red Devils from OL Reign, where she has been incredibly successful. Tulli-Joyce is expected to battle for a starting spot with Lionesses goalkeeper Mary Earps.

The Ebb and Flow of NWSL Internationals

The NWSL saw several other internationals leave and arrive in this window. Brazilian defender Rafaelle Souza left Arsenal at the end of her contract and signed with Orlando Pride. Arriving at the club with several years of international experience and will provide stability to the Orlando backline. Aston Villa will be adding even more firepower to their loaded attack of Rachel Daly, Adriana Leon, and Lucy Staniforth, with the addition of Ebony Salmon. Salmon decided to go back home to England after spending two years in the United States.

NJ/NY Gotham FC might be the club that shocked people the most when they announced the arrival of World Cup winner Esther Gonzalez from Real Madrid. Gonzalez is Real Madrid's all-time goalscorer and will add attacking powers to Gotham. She has already started to make her impact, with a brace against the Washington Spirit to secure three points for Gotham.

Movement in France

People who have followed either PSG or Lyon for a couple of years know they tend to switch a player every now and then. This is not weird considering they are the two best teams in France and they also perform well in the Champions League.

PSG already lost one of the best fullbacks in Ashley Lawrence. Attacker Kadidiatou Diani was on an outgoing contract with PSG hoping they would come to an agreement. Instead, the Paris club had to see one of their best players leave for their league rivals on a free transfer.

Despite losing Lawrence and Diani, PSG signed Australian defender Clare Hunt from Western Sydney Wanderers FC. Hunt comes from a stellar World Cup debut with the Matildas and is an exciting player to watch.

Signings that Might Have Gone Under the Radar

Eredivisie saw two of the league's biggest stars leave for international experience. Goalkeeper Daphne Van Domselaar who got her breakout during the Euros of summer 2022 signed with WSL side Aston Villa. 20-year-old Esmee Brugts has spent the last three seasons with PSV. After having a great season with the national team chose to sign with the reigning champion league winners Barcelona.

Another Dutch star who moved clubs during the summer was Jill Roord. Manchester City announced that they had signed Roord on a three-year deal. The midfielder has spent the last couple of seasons with Wolfsburg and was linked to Barcelona at one point but eventually decided to return to the WSL.

A club that had a great transfer window that might have gone under the radar is Liverpool. The Meyerside club added Australian goalkeeper Teagan Micah signed from Swedish side Rosengård FC. Katie Stengel decided to return to the States and signed for Gotham FC after her loan ended. The club brought in Sophie Roman Haug to replace her. The Norwegian won the Italian league with Roma last season and had a great World Cup despite Norway getting eliminated in the Round of 16. Roma overall had a pretty good window and will look to have a deep run in the UWCL this season. To help reach that goal, they secured Laura Feiersinger from Eintracht Frankfurt on a free transfer.


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