Rachel Furness signs for Reading Women FC.
Rachel Furness signs for Reading Women FC.

Reading Women sign Northern Ireland international

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Rachel Furness signs for Reading Women FC.
Rachel Furness signs for Reading Women FC.

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Reading Women have signed Sunderland and Northern Ireland defensive midfielder Rachel Furness for the forthcoming FA WSL spring series.

28-year-old Furness spent over a decade at Sunderland during two spells at the club and has made 53 international appearances scoring 16 goals.

Sunderland finished a place and a point above Reading in the 2016 WSL1 and the two sides drew 1-1 on both meetings.

Furness’s career started at Chester-le-Street and she has also played for Newcastle United, Lincoln ladies and 12 games for Grindavik in Iceland.

Reading Women and Sunderland Ladies enter the pitch. Photo: Neil Graham.
Reading Women and Sunderland Ladies enter the pitch. Photo: Neil Graham.

Royals manager Kelly Chambers said: “Rachel is a brilliant addition to our squad and she brings with her great experience at both WSL1 and international levels. She has always had a big impact in games when we have played against her in the past and I know she will do the same for us. I’m really looking forward to working with her over the coming seasons”.​

Furness spoke to the official Northern Ireland national team website about the move to Reading saying the move to full time football was not one she could turn down.

She said: “I was out of contract at the end of December and I felt it was a time in my career that I needed a new challenge. Reading came in with an offer and the opportunity to play full time football is something that I couldn’t say no to.

“Reading got promoted last season and have stayed up and established themselves in the division. Speaking to the manager, the club has plans to move forward and so it is definitely a move in the right direction.”

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