They finally did it. Liverpool Ladies have possibly replenished their squad after announcing the signing of 7 new players, including a new goalkeeper, quite a few defenders, and a couple strikers. A couple midfielders would’ve been nice, but with 7 new players that we desperately needed, I guess beggars can’t be choosers.
Strap in, because this is going to get long.
Quite a few of the new signings came from manager Neil Redfearn’s former club Doncaster Rover Belles. Defender Sophie Bradley-Auckland joined Doncaster in 2017 after coming through the system at Nottingham Forest Ladies before switching to Leeds United Ladies in 2006 for four years. She then moved around to Lincoln Ladies and Notts County Ladies before eventually joining Doncaster, helping them win the FA WSL2 title last season.
Following Bradley-Auckland from Doncaster is Welsh international Rhiannon Roberts, another defender. Roberts started her career with Blackburn Rovers Ladies in 2009, before moving to Doncaster in 2013. Her experience was instrumental in leading the Belles to their FA WSL2 title.
The last defender from Doncaster joining the Reds is former captain Leandra Little. She joined Doncaster from Lincoln City in 2011, after spending five years and the start of her career with Lincoln. Little actually also previously played basketball for the England women’s national basketball team and the Sheffield Hatters from 2003 to 2007 before moving onto football! And that’s about all the information that’s out there on her.
That’s not all! Neil Redfearn brought in striker Christie Murray from Glasgow City. Murray previously played at Celtic FC, Arsenal Women, and Bristol City before moving to Doncaster in 2016 (just before Redfearn’s tenure there). The Scotswoman has also gotten 50 caps for her country but also brings the experience of playing the WSL 1 from Arsenal and Bristol City to the Reds.
THERE’S ALSO A GOALKEEPER! German international goalkeeper Anke Pruess joins Liverpool from Sunderland. The 25 year old previous played internationally with FCR 2001 Duisburg, TSG 1899 Hoffenheim, Frankfurt and Verona Calcio before joining up with the Black Cats in 2016. At least someone signed a new ‘keeper, amiright? (I’m actually #TeamKarius so that was in poor taste, sorry).
Joining all of these is Irish international Niamh Fahey, coming to the Reds from Bordeaux. Fahey previously helped Arsenal to a domestic treble in 2009 and Chelsea to a domestic double in 2015, so of the new signings she’s one of the only ones with experience in the WSL1. Her experience in midfield will be invaluable going forward.
Lastly, and maybe most excitingly and interestingly, Redfearn has ensured the signature of Everton striker Courtney Sweetman-Kirk. Sweetman-Kirk, who was also the top scorer for Doncaster Rovers Belles (shocking no one) in the 2017 Spring Series. She also finished as Everton’s top goal-scorer last season, proof she’s a proven striker in the top flight.
I know that’s a lot, so let’s take a breath. Four of these new signings come from Redfear’s previous club, comprised of a goal keeper, three defenders, a defensive midfielder, and two strikers. That brings their squad number to 22 players, which is finally great! They can finally play a full squad and a full bench of substitutes, which definitely came in handy for their first pre-season match on Sunday - a closed doors match against Casey Stoney’s Manchester United.
There’s still plenty of training to be done to prepare for the new season but these are good steps towards the remaking of an entire team.