There has been a mass exodus from a number of clubs following the conclusion of the Women’s Super League, including Tottenham Hotspur, West Ham, Aston Villa and Birmingham City. As a result, a number of star players have been left without a team for next season.
GiveMeSport Women runs through the top five names who are currently unattached. Surely they will be snapped up by a top team soon?
Iwabuchi is not only the best player on this list, but also one of the biggest names in the WSL. The Japanese star is a World Cup winner, triumphing with Japan in 2011.
She joined Aston Villa in January, returning to Europe after a three-year stint at INAC Kobe Leonessa. The 28-year-old was crucial to Villa’s survival in the WSL, appearing 18 times for the club and scoring two goals. This included a stunning long-range effort against Spurs.
It is widely thought Iwabuchi is leaving Aston Villa to sign for Arsenal, where she will link up with former Bayern Munich teammates Vivianne Miedema and Lisa Evans. The North London club are looking for a player of Iwabuchi’s ilk after Jill Roord departed to Wolfsburg.
Another player linked with Arsenal is midfielder Kenza Dali, one of eight players to depart West Ham.
The French star still managed to impress despite West Ham’s disappointing season, topping the team’s assist standings with six in total. She also scored four times for the Hammers.
Dali first joined West Ham in 2019, having previously played for Lyon and PSG. She is also starting to establish herself in the French national squad, earning call-ups against England and the United States last month. Her experience will make her an asset to any WSL team.
Martha Thomas is another to ditch the claret and blue of West Ham, having also joined in 2019. The 24-year-old enjoyed a formative period at the London club, earning her first call-up to the Scottish national team in 2019 as a result of an impressive start in the WSL.
Thomas struggled this season, however, only netting once for the Hammers before April. But her potential was on full display last month – she scored a stunning hat-trick in a 5-0 victory against Reading. Such an eye-catching display right at the end of the season may improve her stock in the transfer market.
Tottenham Hotspur announced a grand total of 11 players would leave the club before next season, including emerging talent Rianna Dean.
The 22-year-old forward was integral to the club’s promotion to the WSL in 2019, before scoring 10 times in 37 appearances in Spurs’s first two seasons in the top flight. Dean had limited playing time this season, and may be looking to move on somewhere with guaranteed minutes on the pitch.
For any team on the lookout for a young, goal-scoring machine, Dean seems a good pick.
Another player departing Spurs is Australian international Alanna Kennedy, who joined the club from Orlando Pride at the start of the season. Her release is somewhat surprising – she initially began her tenure at Tottenham on loan, before converting her contract into a permanent deal later in the season. Perhaps she is hoping to head back to play in the US.
One thing’s for sure, the versatile and talented defender would be a useful addition to the majority of teams. She proved her worth while at Spurs, making 23 appearances and scoring three goals.