Manchester United midfielder Lucy Staniforth is reportedly set to leave the club in the January transfer window, joining FA Women’s Super League rivals Aston Villa. The 30-year old has struggled to find regular football at United since joining the side in 2020, and joins an ambitious Villa team who have already made a splash signing this month.
According to The Telegraph’s women’s football reporter Tom Garry, who broke the story, Staniforth is set to sign an 18-month contract alongside new arrival Jordan Nobbs.
Understand from sources Lucy Stainforth is set to sign for Aston Villa on a permanent transfer from #MUwomen, expect confirmation soon. Staniforth didn't travel to Malta with MUFC this week as she had permission to sign. Big window for AVFC so far. Story:https://t.co/jkDEnNgnMJ— Tom Garry (@TomJGarry) January 6, 2023
Though Staniforth hasn’t been able to hold a spot in the starting XI at United, the Lioness brought a lot of experience to the midfield, as well as provided depth to a position group that is now in need of reinforcements. The departure of Jackie Groenen for Paris Saint-Germain in the summer was a tough blow to take, and now with another player leaving the club may be pressed to find a replacement sooner rather than later.
This does however present an opportunity for other United players who were fighting for minutes. Jade Moore and Vilde Boe Risa are experienced first teamers who haven’t yet broken through to find regular playing time, and are likely the first options after the starting pair of Katie Zelem and Hayley Ladd. There is also Grace Clinton, the talented teenager who was signed from Everton in the summer. Her time in the FA WSL is limited, but she’s been advertised as a prospect who could be vital in the future.