Following yesterday’s announcement of the signing of Sam Kerr, the official Chelsea website spoke to women’s football writer Kieran Theivam from The Athletic who shared with us what fans can look forward to seeing from the Australian star forward…
The 26-year-old is joining on a two-and-a-half-year deal in the transfer window and according to the vastly knowledgeable women’s football writer, in the second half of the season we will have a complete player the type of whom is hard to find…
‘What you’re getting is a natural goalscorer,’ Thievam tells us.
‘Her records speak for themselves. You have a player who has been able to achieve back-to-back top goalscorer awards in two different leagues in the same year and that highlights in itself what type of player Chelsea is signing.‘What puts Sam in a very unique select group of players is her ability to score in so many different ways. She can score with her right foot, her left foot and she’s ridiculously good in the air.‘She has been very open about modelling her heading technique on Tim Cahill [the former Everton and Millwall player who won over 100 caps with Australia], so she has an incredible leap. She’s not the tallest but can leap higher than most defenders which means she’s a real threat in the air as well.
‘She’s very quick, plays on the shoulder of defenders but will come looking for the ball if she is not as involved and she will work hard. That’s probably what most Chelsea fans will look forward to the most, she will work for the team and will expect high standards from those around her.‘Sam will want the team to do everything they can to win matches because she will be doing that exact same thing.’With silverware and qualifying for Champions League football huge focuses for Emma Hayes’ Chelsea, Theivam explained what qualities the three-time NWSL golden boot winner can bring to the side.
‘‘There are very few players like Sam Kerr and we don’t get many players like her anywhere in the world. She absolutely has the capability to take Chelsea to the next level because she frightens defenders, she scores goals in any team that she plays for, whether it was Perth, Chicago Red Stars or Australia.
‘Sam has the capability to create something from nothing, she’s got skill, pace and she can score in so many different ways. There are some amazing players that can do some of those things, but Sam can do all of them.‘I am certain that’s why she has joined Chelsea, she has probably looked at the squad and thought that with my goals and the team around me, we can absolutely achieve Champions League and push onto the next level.’
Prior to her move to the Blues, the Matildas captain proved her goalscoring capabilities in America’s NWSL and the Australian W-League having bowed out by achieving the honour of being the all-time leading goalscorer in both leagues, and The Athletic writer believes now is a perfect time for Kerr to make the move to England.
‘Sam will get game time at Chelsea and there are things to achieve there,’ he said. ‘Chelsea haven’t won the Champions League, they haven’t established themselves as the best team in England, they are one of the best along with Arsenal and Manchester City.‘Everyone recognises Lyon as the best team in France and in Europe. There are teams to dethrone and there are challenges for her. The first one is to dethrone Arsenal as the champions of the WSL and then if they do that they get into the Champions League and then the aim is to dethrone Lyon as the champions of Europe.
‘I’m sure that Sam will have some individual aims herself and will want to be classed in the same breath as Ada Hegerberg and Vivianne Miedema who have scored a lot of goals in Europe, she will want to join them in doing the same.‘Sam will come to England knowing that Arsenal will give them a test, Man City will give them a test and so will Reading, West Ham and Manchester United. The WSL is a full-time professional league and is attracting some of the best players around and I’m sure that’s why Sam has come here.‘She has the opportunity to open up a new audience. There are audiences in Europe that might not know a huge amount about her because they don’t watch the W-League or NWSL, so by coming to the WSL it’s a new audience she’s exposing herself to, and people will see the real quality that she’s got.‘It will attract other players because Sam’s profile alone will have people watching the league and taking an interest.’
Read: Emma Hayes on signing Sam Kerr