Striker makes record transfer to ChelseaReading Women’s striker Fran Kirby has today signed for Chelsea for a British record transfer fee.
It is a proud moment for the Club that Fran, having come through our setup since the age of 8, has become the most expensive player in the history of British female football.
Fran has earned this move following years of continued goalscoring for Reading, and then her performances on the biggest stage in the Women’s World Cup. Upon her return from the tournament, a number of clubs made offers for her ahead of this week’s transfer deadline, and the Club felt that Fran deserved the opportunity to make the move she wanted, to the current WSL league leaders and FA Cup finalists, who also have Champions League football later in the year.
All of the money received will go towards keeping our ladies team progressing in their current manner. For a player to have come through our youth system and move for a British record is testament to Fran, and all of the players and coaches she has worked with here in Berkshire. Our team are currently top of WSL2, having ended last season very strongly in our first year at that level, and Fran’s record move is potentially another important step in the Club’s progression.
Manager Kelly Chambers said, “I truly wish Fran all the best for the future and may her successes continue.
“Of course there is sadness to see Fran leave the club that she has been at for 15 years. I have been lucky enough to have worked with her in all the time she has been here. I have seen her develop as a person as well as a player. It was a really hard decision for me to let Fran go but it is something that I felt I needed to let Fran do. I have a squad that is strong enough to still try and achieve promotion and they have proven this in the first half of the season.
“This will always be Fran's home and she will forever be part of this club. I know she will be missed but this club is very close to Fran's heart, so I know she won't be a stranger.
“Fran is an extremely talented player who has years ahead of her to build on the successes she has already achieved at the age of 22. We all wish her well.”
The Club would also like to end by wishing Fran the best of luck at Chelsea and for England. We know she will thrive in WSL1 and we will watch her progress with affection.
The Royals also look forward to our supporters’ continued backing in WSL2, starting this Saturday at home to Durham, kick off 6pm at Farnborough. The women’s game is on a real high at the moment – long may it continue.
For more information on our Women's team go to reading.fawsl.com