Reading FC Women’s FA WSL January transfer window

Justine Vanhaevermaet. Photo: Neil Graham.
Justine Vanhaevermaet. Photo: Neil Graham.

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The January transfer window opened on Friday 30th of December and will close on Saturday 28th of January as the FA Women’s Super League and the Women’s Championship get set for a flurry of comings and goings.

FA WSL Transfer rumours

Justine Vanhaevermaet

The rumour mill has been whirring in ‘WOSO’ world and Justine Vanhaevermaet has reportedly requested a move to Manchester United.

Justine Vanhavermaet of Reading Women Photo: Neil Graham
Justine Vanhavermaet of Reading Women Photo: Neil Graham

As a fan, it’s odd to me that she would be pushing for a move to United given she’s a regular starter for the Royals and yet is likely to be a benchwarmer for the Reds, she would be looking to compete for a spot with the likes of Katie Zelem, Ella Toone and Hayley Ladd who are consistent starter whilst the likes of Vilde Boe Risa, Lucy Staniforth and former Royal Jade sit on the bench themselves. Vanhaevermaet had keen interest from a few French clubs before leaving Lillestrom SK Kvinner and settling in the Royal County. Perhaps the prospect of UWCL football is the draw but as it stands this transfer seems far more rumour than concrete move.

Wasila Diwura-Soale

According to BBC Sports journalist, Emma Sanders, there is interest in Ghanian international, Wasila Diwura-Soale, the midfielder has been in the US collegiate system since 2017 with stints at Navarro Bulldogs, Lamar Last Cardinals and LSU Tigers. She also spent three seasons at Ghanian pro-club Sekkondi Hasaacas Ladies winning the Ghana Women’s Premier League in three consecutive years. Her agency represent a number of well-known players at Championship level so she’s certainly one to keep an on.

Beth England

Elsewhere, Beth England is reportedly on her way North of the capital to Tottenham Hotspur as she has no doubt felt frustrated with her lack of playing time at Chelsea. Much the same happened with Deanna Cooper who is now a stalwart of the Reading XI. As a Royals fan, I’m gutted she’s going to Spurs, I’ve been banging the Beth England to Reading drum for at least two years, but the mammoth rumoured fee of £250k is far beyond anything Reading could ever wish to shell out and makes her the most expensive British player currently in the WSL should the, widely reported, deal come off.

Who’s contract is up in June?

Faye Bryson. Photo: Neil Graham /
Faye Bryson. Photo: Neil Graham /

Like searching for a needle in a haystack, contract lengths and dates are near impossible to establish for Reading but we can at least confirm Faye Bryson, Gemma Evans, Justine Vanhaevermaet and Deanne Rose, currently out long-term injury, all have paperwork signed til June 2023.

With Grace Moloney looking out of favour between the sticks, it may be possible that she’ll make a move elsewhere, we’d expect to see her at a Championship side potentially. Whilst she’s Slough-born, she’s made her way through the ranks of Ireland, through paternal links, at international level from the U15’s to the current Senior level so it may be that she’s drawn to a move across the Irish Sea.

Who can Reading realistically sign in the transfer window?

Chloe Peplow. Photo: Neil Graham /
Chloe Peplow. Photo: Neil Graham /

Chloe Peplow recalled from Crystal Palace? So this isn’t technically a signing as she’s out on loan to the side but a return is unlikely we’d say, the Eagles sit sixth in the Championship table and the league continues to be as competitive as ever plus she’s only made a handful of appearances for the side so far so we’d expect her to remain with the squad at least for the rest of the season.

The Welsh contingent at the club remains strong but so too does the newly established Irish one and we may see players make their way across from the Women’s National League with Shelbourne claiming the title for a second year running, the pull of the WSL may prove in the favour of Reading. The Royals are certainly in the market for a more prolific goalscorer and Peamount United’s Áine O’Gorman notched up 22 for the South Dublin side this season making that the fifth time she’s claimed the top goalscorer in eight seasons.

It may also be worth looking to the Scottish Women’s Premier League at the likes of Glasgow City, Celtic and Hibernian as players strive for quality playing time in a bid to get Scotland on the international stage. Glasgow striker Emily Whelan has a WSL notch on her belt already having played for Birmingham City during their relegation season, and could be another of the Irish alliance at Reading.

The reality is Reading have one of, if not, the smallest budgets in the WSL and the fact remains they are now the only side with a men’s equivalent team in the Championship, all fellow sides have men’s teams competing in the Premier League. Kelly Chambers has always kept a small squad bolstered by the academy.

Related: Rob Gier on Ascot United, coaching Reading FC Women youngsters and captaining the Philippines

Who would you like to see in the hoops at the Select Car Leasing Stadium? Let us know in the comments.

You can keep up to date with all things Reading FC Women on the website here.

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