Thursday, June 1, 2023

Arsenal Women: You’re Gonna Hear Me Roord

Arsenal announced the signing of Dutch international attacking midfielder Jill Roord from Bayern Munich Frauen last week. Aged just 22, Roord is an exciting attacking midfielder to add competition and support for the likes of Jordan Nobbs, Danielle van de Donk and Kim Little. She played in the Champions League semi-final with Bayern this season.

The deal for Roord, along with two of her Bayern teammates yet to be announced, was agreed earlier this year. She is represented by an agency called Flowsports, who also represent manager Joe Montemurro. I’m really proud that I’m going to be an Arsenal player,” she told “Arsenal is an amazing club and they’re also champions now, so I’m really happy and proud to join the club.

“Arsenal is one of the clubs in England that I really like. In women’s football, they’ve always been one of the top clubs. Of course there are some Dutch friends of mine who play there, so I’ve always followed them. I’m really looking forward to it.

“What type of player am I? I’m really technical. I can play offensive and also defensive midfield. I’m really technical and like to have the ball at my feet. I can also score a lot, so hopefully I can make some goals too.”

Bayern goalkeeper Manuela Zinsberger was also confirmed as an Arsenal player this week. The Austrian international agreed a deal with the Gunners during the spring and she will take the place of outgoing goalie Sari van Veenendaal. The Bayern exodus will be completed in the coming days, with right-back Leonie Maier also joining the club. Arsenal are also set to play Bayern in the Emirates Cup in July.

“I’m a modern goalkeeper. I want to play rather than being a goalkeeper who plays kick and rush. I want to play with my defenders, midfielder and I think that’s the modern goalkeeper style. I like this. I’m looking forward to being part of it. Hopefully we can win the league next season,” she told

Defender Louise Quinn also extended her contract last week, having joined the club from Notts County back in April 2017. The Irish centre-half has again proved to be a key cog in Arsenal’s title winning team, completing more passes than any other player in the WSL on top of her more tangible defensive qualities.

“It’s absolutely huge for me,” she told Arsenal Player. “Definitely number one is that you’re looking for that league title and as long as I can keep putting those performances in on the pitch, and then to get a contract after is brilliant.” We have an interview with Louise in one of our summer Arsenal Women Arsecasts to look forward to where, among other things, Quinn describes how she won a move to Sweden by editing her own highlights video…

One player that won’t be joining Arsenal this summer is Ajax left-back Kika van Es. van Es will be leaving Ajax this summer, but does not yet know her new club. Arsenal made an approach in January, perhaps sensing Emma Mitchell’s situation. But Ajax persuaded her to stay and win the Eredivisie Vrouwen. According to Dutch publication Voetbal International, the deal between Ajax and Arsenal will not be revived. There are some rumours floating around linking Arsenal to some centre halves in the WSL, but as yet they are only rumours.

Kim Little and Lisa Evans were selected in former Arsenal boss Shelley Kerr’s Scotland squad for the World Cup, but there was no place for left-back Emma Mitchell. Mitch missed Euro 2017 with a torn hamstring, so it is desperately cruel for her to miss out on another tournament with her country.

We also have interviews with Mitch and Lisa Evans during one of our summer Arsenal Women Arsecast episodes. Emma explains why she missed so much of the second half of the season, having played only a few minutes since February. Her lack of game time ultimately cost her a World Cup place.

The girls’ title success earned them the Breakdown treatment last week, as analyst and commentator Adrian Clarke dissected the reasons behind their WSL title win this season. Adrian looks at the development of Katie McCabe and Beth Mead, the form of Vivianne Miedema and the centre-half pairing and how they all combined to convincingly win the Gunners the title. It really is a must watch.

Arsenal boss Joe Montemurro was honoured with the LMA WSL Manager of the Year gong at the LMA awards last week, fending off competition from the likes of Nick Cushing and Emma Hayes for the prize.

Beth Mead’s fulminating strike against Brighton in April has been voted as the WSL Goal of the Season at the FA’s Women’s Football Awards. Mead lashed a shot into the top corner from 30 yards on the day that the Gunners sealed the league title in front of over 5,000 spectators at the AMEX.

UEFA published their first ever strategy for women’s football last week, christened #TimeForAction, it is UEFA’s first ever strategy document relating solely to women’s football. Among their headline aims is to double the number of female players in Europe by 2024; double the reach and value of the UEFA Women’s EURO and the UEFA Women’s Champions League, improve player standards by reaching standard agreements for national team players and putting safeguarding policies in place in all 55 member association and double female representation on all UEFA bodies. A full copy of the strategy document is viewable below.

Some eye candy courtesy of the good people of Statsbomb, a live graphic illustrating the movements in the Golden Boot race between Vivianne Miedema and Nikita Parris. Parris will leave Manchester City this summer, most likely for Lyon, with City already having snapped up her replacement in Ellen White.

We’ll continue the Weekly Round-Ups until the World Cup begins on June 7th, after which we will probably do some kind of World Cup round-up for you during the tournament. If you’re interested in following the Women’s World Cup, next week I will include a recommended twitter follow list for the tournament. I will be doing some work for other outlets during the tournament too, on the off chance you are remotely interested!

We will have the next episode of the Arsenal Women Arsecast available this week, featuring an extended interview with Gunners boss Joe Montemurro on his tactical philosophy and how he won the buy-in of his squad after arriving in December 2017. There will also be an interview with German international Tabea Kemme on her first injury hit season in England. Both of these interviews will also be made available as YouTube videos in the next couple of weeks. There are interviews with Emma Mitchell, Lisa Evans, Louise Quinn, Katie McCabe, Janni Arnth and Katrine Veje which will all be released during the summer too.

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