Manchester United are closing in on the transfer of Nikita Parris from Arsenal Women, according to a report in The Athletic by David Ornstein. Parris, 28, joined Arsenal for a record fee last summer from Lyon. The move, agreed to before Jonas Eidevall became Arsenal’s new manager, has not worked out as all parties would’ve wanted. Parris scored one WSL goal this season, a penalty on the penultimate weekend of the season, and started just five WSL games for Arsenal this season.
EXCL: Man Utd have reached agreement with Arsenal to sign Nikita Parris. Fee & personal terms in place - not signed - for decorated winger to join #MUWomen. 28yo England int’l moved to #AFC from Lyon last summer @TheAthleticUK #ENG #Lionesses #WEURO2022 https://t.co/QuYnkkLhSM— David Ornstein (@David_Ornstein) July 7, 2022
Indeed, Parris ended up playing less than January signing Stina Blackstenius. This is nothing against Parris as a player; simply put, she was never going to play centre forward with Vivianne Miedema at the club, and she’s far more of a wide forward anyway. Unfortunately for Parris, Beth Mead was in very good form all season, and Mead, and Arsenal’s other wide players, such as Katie McCabe and Caitlin Foord, did more of what Eidevall wanted: take their fullbacks on and stretch play. Parris is far more of an out to in runner off the ball, and the two styles never really meshed together.
Parris is in the England squad for this summer’s Euros, and the move makes sense for her. There is a World Cup next summer, and England have a lot of talent in wide positions, with Parris, Mead, Chloe Kelly, and Lauren Hemp, with the likes of Manchester City’s Jess Park and Chelsea’s Lauren James knocking on the door. To secure her position, Parris must play more.
Arsenal will likely receive a fee from Manchester United, as there is still a year to run on Parris’ contract.