History will be written today in Chelsea FC Women. After what believes to be one of the highest transfer fees in the history paid for a female footballer, Danish international and superstar Pernille Harder will join the Blues‘. The reported price for the transfer would be €300,000, which means the largest fee ever paid for a Frauen-Bundesliga player.
Harder, who was named UEFA’s best footballer of the year in Europe in 2018, comes from four successful seasons with the German giants in the Frauen Bundesliga, Vfl Wolfsburg. She signed with the Wolves after her first session as a professional outside Denmark, after 4,5 years of playing in Linköpings FC in Sweden, where she scored 70 goals in 87 games. Also rewarded as MVP two years in a row in Sweden, 2015 and 2016, Pernille Harder early showed that she was a player to look out for as women’s football has progressed and developed the past decade.
She put pen to paper with Vfl Wolfsburg in the middle of the season 2016/2017 and cemented her spot into the German dominant’s starting formation straight away.
Accomplishments from her time in Germany
Pernille Harder is a remarkable player with an excellent track record. During her time in Germany, she has proved herself as one of Europe’s, if not the world’s, best players. She has won the double with the Wolves, four years in a row along with playing two Champions League’s finals. Except for her UEFA award for the best player in Europe 2018, the Dane was also appointed to be the best footballer in the world by The Guardian the same year along with being the runner up for Ballon D’Or.
Earlier this year Pernille Harder became the first woman to be named ‘Niedersachsens Footballer of the Year’ this season after an impressive league campaign with her scoring 27 times in only 22 games. She is also second in the running for the Champions League golden boot, just one goal behind Vivianne Miedema’s ten. And the other day she was also named as Germany’s Footballer of the Year as the first non-German ever to get that award. How many goals has she scored in total during her time in Wolfsburg? 105 goals 114 games. The numbers speak for themselves.
Harder’s ability to score from the very beginning of her career has made her a superstar within women’s football. In her international debut for Denmark, she scored a hat-trick at the age of 16. Ever since she has gone on to achieve 61 goals at the international level. Although she is yet to play in a World Cup, Harder captained Denmark to the UEFA Women’s Euro Final in 2017.
What others have said about the Dane
Martin Sjögren, former head coach of Linköpings FC, current head coach of the Norweigan National Women’s Team:
“It’s no secret that I think Pernille Harder is the best football player in the world.”
Stephan Lerch, head coach of Vfl Wolfsburg:
“Pernille is a very complete player. She is particularly convincing due to her good overview of the game and her strong technique. Pernille is a real team player with a very strong head on her shoulders. She is still one of the most important players to have on the pitch, even if she’s not 100 % that particular day.”
Lars Sondegaard, Denmark head coach:
“It is for me no coincidence that she is there, where she belongs, on the top! A winner, a great teammate, who works hard for the team, a girl who always gives 100 % no matter if it is in games or in training. She runs the most, and she scores the most! Top at club and national team level. Her only disappointment this year, apart from losing the Champions League final, was not qualifying for the World cup 2019 with Denmark. The World Cup in France will miss her!”
Hanna Glas, Sweden National Team player:
if I had to choose a role model from the present time, I would choose Pernille Harder. I really admire her, and I think she is way too underrated as a player. She gets a lot of recognition, but far from enough if you ask me.”
What she can provide within Chelsea
With Harder’s unique sense of the play, she will be valuable in use anywhere in the pitch. But perhaps she fits most comfortably as an attacking midfielder, in a more free role behind two top strikers where she can best steer the game around herself and pounce on any opportunity that’s given to her. Harder’s has an excellent way to visualise and read the game, and that’s why she is also much capable of setting up her teammates and wide players to create chances of their own to score.
You can find a great analysis with a lot of knowledge about Pernille Harder’s way of playing and her style HERE in a report from TOTAL FOOTBALL ANALYSIS earlier this year.