After over a year-and-a-half out with a complicated foot injury, if this time last year you’d have said to Maria Thorisdottir that she would have featured for Norway at the 2017 Euros and be leaving Klepp (six points off of second in the Toppserien) for Chelsea, it’s likely the defender wouldn’t have believed you. However, with the news broken in Norway yesterday – after speculation of a move to either Chelsea or Arsenal – that’s exactly the position Thorisdottir finds herself in.
Her return to football in March showed that the centre-back had lost nothing in her time out, realiable at the back for Klepp over the first-half of the season. Thorisdottir has also featured in each of Martin Sjögren’s Norway squads since he took over last December.
A dismal Euros highlighted the problems for the Football Girls whilst Thorisdottir remained one of the few bright sparks in a desperately under-performing team. Her eye-catching performances both in the back line and just in front in the defensive hole were enough to catch more than one pair of eyes with two English teams ready to battle for her signature this summer – before her contract elapsed at the end of the season.
Opting for Chelsea, the Blues are reported to have paid a fee in the area of 100,000kr (just shy of £10,000) to secure Thorisdottir’s signature, and if the defender can keep up her stellar form it will clearly be money well spent.
Good deal for Klepp
Managing director of Klepp, Thomas Langholm Engen spoke to NRK about the move, talking about a good level of communication between Klepp and Chelsea throughout the process.
Whilst happy to see players come through Klepp and develop into international stars, Langholm is both sad to see the club lose Maria but excited to see who in the team is ready to step up and fill the role she vacated.
Though Chelsea are yet to announce the move, Thorisdottir has stated that she “feels ready” to take the next step although the move is “a bit scary” (NRK) for a player who's never played outside the safety of the Norwegian league, faithful to the Rogaland club since 2010.