Carrying on our squad analysis, we will be looking today at the defenders who play for Arsenal ladies.
I have listed their squad numbers and the age they will be in 2016 in brackets.
- 2. Alex Scott (32)
- 3. Emma Mitchell (24)
- 4. Vyan Sampson (20)
- 5. Casey Stoney (34)
- 19. Jemma Rose (24)
- 24. Lotte Wubben-Moy (17)
- 29. Chiara Ritchie-Williams (18)
- 31. Lucy Parker (18)
- 33. Phillipa Cowley (19)
There are four centre-backs at the club, so there is no problem at all there, in terms of quality and quantity.
Kelly Smith has said that Vyan Sampson would compete next season for a starting place against Casey Stoney and Jemma Rose. Lotte-Wubben-Moy has already got a few starts despite only being 16 years old and has huge potential.
Should any top quality right or left backs be available in the market, it would be a good idea for Arsenal to sign them as both Scott and Mitchell would make excellent back-ups.
Alex Scott, now 32, does not have the same energy level as she did in her prime, while Mitchell is a winger/forward converted to defender, so a pure defender might be useful and bring competition for the position.
Dominique Janssen and Leah Williamson can both cover in the four defensive positions if needed while Marta Corredera has also played in both full back positions this season. Jade Bailey can also cover at centre-back.
Young players, Chiara Ritchie Williams, Lucy Parker and Phillipa Cowley, will surely carry on improving while playing for the Development team.
There is a good balance between experienced players, youth and up-and-coming players in defence, so the club might not see it as priority to recruit in those positions.
Next up midfielders. Goalkeepers here.