English side Chelsea have confirmed the impressive signing of Scottish midfielder Erin Cuthbert from Glasgow City.
Chelsea manager Emma Hayes, who was recently awarded an MBE, has been busy strengthening her squad after being pipped to the title by Manchester City as well as being knocked out of the UEFA Women's Champions League. So far, they have signed Maren Mjelde from Avaldsnes IL and Romanna Bachmann from Wolfsburg.
Erin Cuthbert, who has signed with the London club until 2019, had become a critical part of Glasgow City's side in her two years with the Scottish club. In 2016, she scored 19 goals for City and her efforts were recognised by being named the club's Player of the Year. Her spectacular chipped effort against Spartans in April was named as City's third best goal of 2016.
Potential to be a top player
Speaking to Chelsea's website, Cuthbert thanked Glasgow City for how they helped her career. On the challenge playing for Chelsea, she said “I know it is going to be a big step up but I believe in my ability and will give everything to help the team succeed and win trophies."
Hayes also spoke about her excitement in signing Cuthbert, saying “We want to put best with best. Erin will be the youngest member of our squad, yet is fully capable of playing in our first team on a regular basis. That’s how much trust we have in her.”
Whilst admitting that Cuthbert still needs to develop, Hayes went on to comment that Cuthbert's decision making would see her finding her place in Chelsea's team. The Chelsea Manager even stated that she felt that Cuthbert's potential could see her become one of the game's top players.
Her first season at City, after joining from Rangers in 2015, often saw her play a deep midfield role alongside Jo Love. But in 2016, she has been deployed in a more attacking position and can play in any of the positions behind the striker as she became one of City's key players.
She is considered one of the most talented young players in Scotland and recently captained Scotland Under-19s in their controversial qualifying campaign for the 2017 UEFA Women's Under-19 Championship where Scotland were unfairly punished for their players falling seriously ill ahead of their final game against Serbia.
Cuthbert made her Scotland debut in Scotland's 1-0 win against Belarus back in June and was highly unlucky not to mark the occasion with a goal. In Scotland's painful 7-0 defeat to the Netherlands in October, she was one of the few Scottish players to come away with any credit after coming on in the second half.
With Scotland playing in their debut tournament in the UEFA Women's Euro 2017 in Netherlands, Cuthbert will be looking to impress in the WSL Spring Series to force herself into Anna Signeul's squad.
Top talent in Scottish football
She joins several Scottish international players plying their trade in England, including Jane Ross and Emma Mitchell who both came through the Glasgow City system.
Glasgow City's Head Coach Scott Booth told City's website that she had really progressed into a “top talent in Scottish football”, and whilst he was disappointed to lose Cuthbert, he accepted it was part of football. He gave her his best wishes, saying that he was “confident that she is going on to bigger and better things in the game.”
During her time with Glasgow City, Cuthbert won two SWPL titles, and the SWPL Cup and Scottish Cup in 2015. She also played in their past two UEFA Champions League campaigns as they lost to Chelsea and Eskilstuna United in the Round of 32.
With the 2017 SWPL 1 season likely to begin in late February or early March, Glasgow City will be looking to win their eleventh title in a row without Cuthbert's services.