Matildas star poised to join Kerr in England
EXCITING Matildas attacker Caitlin Foord appears to be the latest Aussie superstar destined for the English Women's Super League.
Foord looks set to join English giants Arsenal, where she would team up with highly rated Australian coach Joe Montemurro.
In what looms as a mouth-watering prospect for Matildas fans, Foord may be an outside chance to play against close friend and Matildas teammate Sam Kerr in the mega top-of-the-table clash between the Gunners and Chelsea on January 20.
Last season's champions Arsenal (30 points) lead at the midway mark, three points ahead of Manchester City. Chelsea (26) is in third but has a game in hand.
Foord's last W-League game for Sydney FC could be the Round 10 clash with Brisbane Roar at Leichardt Oval on January 16.
She has been named in the Matildas' 20-player squad for February's Tokyo 2020 qualifiers, but will bypass the Matildas camp in Sydney, starting January 20, to make her Gunners debut, before joining the Aussie squad for the China tournament along with fellow European-based players Kerr and Emily Gielnik (Bayern Munich).
The Matildas face Taiwan (February 3), Thailand (February 6) and China (February 9). The top two teams advance to a two-legged, home-and-away play-off in March to decide Asia's three Tokyo 2020 berths.
Free-flowing Foord is unstoppable in full flight and has formed a deadly international attacking partnership with the predatory Kerr.
Foord, 25, has notched almost 100 games abroad with Portland Thorns, Sky Blue FC and Japanese side Vegalta Sendai while combining with her W-League duties, which has also included stints with Central Coast and Perth Glory.
Wollongong-born Foord was the Matildas' breakout star at the 2011 FIFA Women's World Cup, winning the Young Player of the Tournament award and Asian Women's Young Footballer of the Year award and has not looked back since.
She won the senior Asian Footballer of the Year award in 2016.
Foord has won 77 Matildas caps, scoring 17 goals, and is one of the Matildas' keys as they attempt to qualify for the Tokyo Olympics, and as Australia bids to host the 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup.
She played in all four World Cup games at France 2019, scoring her first goal.
The Australian contingent in the rapidly growing English league is rising, with Melbourne-born teenager Jacynta Galabadaarachchi joining West Ham at the start of the season.