Sam Kerr says she is fulfilling a lifelong dream after signing to play with powerful English Women’s Super League club Chelsea.
The Westfield Matildas skipper ended months of speculation over her club future by announcing a two-and-a-half year deal with the London club on Wednesday night.
After deciding her body and mind could no longer handle back-to-back campaigns in both the Westfield W-League and America’s NWSL, a number of Europe’s top club’s pursued Kerr’s services.
French giants Lyon and Spanish heavyweights Barcelona were two clubs in the frame to secure the 26-year-old, but Chelsea’s professionalism won out.
“It’s been a dream of mine since I was a kid to play in Europe and in the last year I thought about it and thought this is the time,” Kerr said in an exclusive interview with Fox Sports.
“I felt really comfortable at Chelsea speaking to the coach so I thought it was time.
CONFIRMED: Kerr signs with Chelsea
“I think at the end of the day the most important thing was me feeling comfortable and I felt most comfortable with a move to Chelsea and I felt like it would be the least amount of culture shock.
“The club just appealed to me with the way they approached the signing, they kept it really professional and it’s something that attracted me to the club.”
Kerr has enjoyed a remarkable few years with both club and country, breaking numerous goal-scoring records in both the Westfield W-League and NWSL, where she was the league’s MVP in 2019.
She scored five goals to help the Westfield Matildas reach the last 16 of June’s FIFA Women’s World Cup in France, while her exploits in the US saw her club Chicago Red Stars reach the NWSL Final.
“[The move to Chelsea] is going to be a challenge and a challenge is good. That’s what I need at the moment,” Kerr admitted.
“Anything can happen but I’m going there with an open mind to get better and learn and try and better myself as a footballer and a person.
“I think it’s going to challenge me a lot so I’m excited.”
It’s understood the deal with the Blues, which will officially begin when the European Transfer Window opens, will make Kerr one of the highest paid female footballers in history.
“It’s obviously pretty amazing to say it like that but for me it’s just the start,” Kerr said.
“I think all women’s footballers should be paid this amount and hopefully in the future there’s many more Matildas that earn this amount of money.
“It’s not about the money for me, I probably could have got bigger money elsewhere but for me it’s about feeling comfortable and going somewhere where I know I’ll be valued and Chelsea have always been in the hunt for me and said that I was the player they wanted and made me feel really wanted.
"I want to be at a club where they need me as much as I need them.”