Caitlin Foord gets ready for next chapter at Arsenal

EXCITED: Caitlin Foord proudly wears the Arsenal jersey. Picture: Instagram

EXCITED: Caitlin Foord proudly wears the Arsenal jersey. Picture: Instagram

Caitlin Foord hopes she can "take her game to the next level" after putting pen to paper on a deal with UK powerhouse Arsenal FC.

The Shellharbour product joins the growing ranks of Matildas stars who have moved to play in the English FA Women's Super League. That list includes Aussie captain Sam Kerr, Chloe Logarzo and Hayley Raso.

Foord was previously a key part of the W-League reigning champions Sydney FC and was also signed to Portland Thorns FC in the US National Women's League.

She told the Mercury the move to Arsenal was a big opportunity to keep improving as a footballer.

"That's what I'm hoping for. Hopefully this is the right move for me and it does help take my game to the next level," the 25-year-old said.

"Obviously I'm very excited for the new challenge and the new experience. But I'm very nervous as well. It's a new team, not really knowing anyone. It's one of the biggest clubs in the world, with some of the biggest players in the world and coached by one of the best coaches in the world.

"I'm still learning and I'm still trying to get better."

MOVING FORWARD: Caitlin Foord looks to pass the ball to a Matildas team mate during a match in November. Picture: Getty Images

MOVING FORWARD: Caitlin Foord looks to pass the ball to a Matildas team mate during a match in November. Picture: Getty Images

Foord is currently in a Matildas training camp as the side prepares for the 2020 AFC Women's Olympic Qualification Tournament.

The star forward, who has played 77 games for Australia, said it was great to see some of her Matildas teammates also head over to the English league.

"I think it's just that time where you feel like having a new challenge," Foord said.

"A lot of us have been playing over in America for a while and Europe is definitely taking their game to the next level, as we've seen at the World Cup and with England doing really well.

"I think the league there, in the men's, is one of the best in the world. And the women are not far behind."

However, it's with a heavy heart that Foord leaves Sydney FC - the club she debuted with as a 16-year-old.

"The last thing I wanted to do was leave Sydney halfway through the season but with an opportunity like this one, it was almost too good to let go," Foord said in an interview with Sydney FC.

"The best thing about it is the girls have all been really understanding and the club has been so supportive.

"I give all credit to Sydney to where my career started... to spend so many years here, I've enjoyed every moment of it. It's so nice to see how far the club has come and how much further it's going to be when I return."

Foord has played professional football for close to a decade. She's now one of the first picked for the Matildas and feels more comfortable with her own style.

While she knows there will be a lot of eyes on her at Arsenal, Foord said she hadn't set herself too many goals.

"My goal is just to improve, to help the team and do the best I can to help them achieve their goals. I just want to play some good football," Foord said.

"I guess I'm just growing and learning. That comes with having more experience and more games, especially bigger games. It just naturally comes and that's what I'm hoping to keep driving."

This story Caitlin Foord gets ready for next chapter at Arsenal first appeared on Illawarra Mercury.