Chelsea FC Women have added to our squad ahead of the 2020/21 season with the signing of attacking player Niamh Charles from Liverpool Women.
Charles, who celebrated her 21st birthday on Sunday, has agreed a deal with the Blues until the summer of 2023.
The England youth international came through Liverpool’s centre of excellence and development squad, before becoming a first-team regular. She made her Women’s Super League debut at just 16 and has since gone on to make 59 appearances, scoring 11 goals for Liverpool, with two coming against Chelsea.
We took a share of the points against Charles’ former team in December – one of only three draws for Chelsea in our 2019/20 Barclays FA Women’s Super League campaign.
Charles, fielded as a wide player, represented England at the 2016 FIFA Under-17s World Cup and her impressive form domestically continued to attract international recognition, having competed at the 2018 Under-20 World Cup where she helped the young Lionesses to bronze.
In 2018 she was also voted as the ‘Rising Star’ at the North-West Football Awards.
Charles said: ‘I’m absolutely delighted to be joining Chelsea FC Women. This is a really proud day for not only myself, but also my family.‘Emma Hayes is one of the most highly-regarded managers in our game. She was a huge part of my decision to come to the club. I know she will help me fulfil my potential and I will be working hard to make sure I give myself every opportunity to learn, develop and improve as a player. I can’t wait to get started.‘I’m joining the current WSL champions and this club regularly competes for trophies domestically and in Europe – something I can’t wait to be a part of.‘I want to say to the fans that I will always give my all and I’m really looking forward to playing in front of them at Kingsmeadow. The support Chelsea get is amongst the best in the league and I’m sure that together, we’ll enjoy lots of success.’
Hayes added: ‘Niamh is a player we have watched since her debut season. She is a tenacious and willing competitor that gives everything in her performance.‘Her abilities out wide will be utilised on both flanks and we know her best years are to come. She knows what it takes to succeed here and she has a great head on her shoulders.‘I’m excited to show the fans her pace and ability in one-v-one situations.’Charles will link up with her new Chelsea team-mates at Cobham when pre-season begins in the summer.