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Arsenal Women sign Amanda Ilestedt

Arsenal have strengthened their defence

Arsenal Women Unveil New Signing Photo by David Price/Arsenal FC via Getty Images

Arsenal Women have announced the signing of Amanda Ilestedt, who joins on a free transfer. Ilestedt, 30, left Paris St. Germain after the expiration of her contract, having also been at Bayern Munich, and FC Rosengård, where she played under Arsenal’s head coach, Jonas Eidevall.

Following the departure of Rafaelle Souza and Leah Williamson’s ACL tear, Arsenal needed to add to their group of centre backs. Ilestedt, a full Swedish international who has been named in Sweden’s squad for the upcoming World Cup, is a good addition. Speaking to Arsenal.com, Eidevall said, “She brings extensive international experience and I believe she has a great mix of presence and technical ability, making her an ideal fit for our squad. I enjoyed working with Amanda during our time in Sweden and am looking forward to coaching her here at Arsenal too.”

Ilestedt is an able distributor, which given the roles that Williamson and Rafaelle play in Arsenal’s build-up, is an important facet of her addition. This article on Arseblog News also goes into depth explaining how Ilestedt can replace Rafaelle in terms of build-up and aerial presence.

Finally, Ilestedt’s addition gives Jonas Eidevall some ability to rotate. He can play Ilestedt at right centre back with Steph Catley or Lia Wälti playing out of position on the left to offer left footed angles, or she can play on the left of the centre back pairing, as she did at Bayern Munich, with Lotte Wubben-Moy, and indeed Williamson when the England centre back returns in the new year.

Ilestedt is Arsenal’s first signing of the summer, but there are more expected. Cloé Lacasse and Alessia Russo have both been strongly linked with the club, and with the WSL window now open, expect those deals to be confirmed in the coming days and weeks.