Chelsea Women have agreed a deal to sign Aniek Nouwen from PSV Eindhoven.

The 22-year-old Netherlands defender has agreed pre-contract terms on a three-year deal which commits her to the club until the summer of 2024. She will join up with Emma Hayes’ squad ahead of the 2021/22 campaign.

Nouwen made her professional debut in 2016 with PSV and has been a standout player for the team since with over 100 club appearances and 15 goals to her name. PSV have had an impressive track record so far this season and are currently vying for the top spot in the Eredivisie league play-offs and are also heading to the KNVB Women’s Cup final against Den Haag in June, having recently beaten Ajax.

The talented youngster arrives with significant international experience, having made her debut for the Netherlands senior national team against Poland in 2019 and since gone on to become an integral member of the squad, making 14 appearances for her home country. Nouwen’s first goal was scored in a 7-0 victory over Estonia which saw her side qualify for the Women’s Euros in 2022. Prior to this she was called up to represent the Under-20 team at the 2018 FIFA U20 Women’s World Cup, playing all of the Netherlands matches in the tournament, making it to the quarter-finals but narrowly missing out to England 2-1.

Nouwen also featured in the Under-19 team at the 2017 and 2018 UEFA Women’s Under-19 Championships, reaching the semi-final stages in 2017, as well as featuring in the Under-17 team in the 2016 and 2017 UEFA Women’s U17 Championship qualifiers.

On signing for Chelsea, Nouwen said: ‘There were other clubs who were interested, but I made my decision to join Chelsea pretty fast!

‘To play in the English league has always been a dream for me as it is the best competition and it provides the best opportunity for me to develop even more. I’m very honoured and proud to become a Blue and I can’t wait to be a part of this winning team. I want to win prizes and play in the big games.

‘I’m looking forward to joining up with the team, it’s all going to be very new but I’m really excited.’

Chelsea FC Women manager Emma Hayes commented: ‘Aniek really is an exciting addition to our squad. Not only does she bring a wealth of league and international experience for her age, she is also very composed on the ball and her physicality will certainly suit the English league.

‘I have no doubt Aniek is one of the best young defenders in the world and has a very bright future ahead of her with us. We cannot wait to welcome her to Cobham this summer.’

Nouwen hopes to be part of the Netherlands national team in Japan this summer at the Tokyo Olympics and will join the Blues upon her return, with her first chance of selection at Chelsea’s opening game of the 2021/22 season.

We will be getting to know Nouwen and bringing more exclusive updates when she joins us in the summer.