Arsenal defender Anna Patten is the first WSL player to move during the January transfer window, completing a loan switch to 10th-place Aston Villa for the rest of the season.
Several clubs are expected to be busy this month ahead of the second half of the 2021/22 campaign. Patten's deal is the first to be fully signed off since the window opened, as well as the first domestic transfer involving an existing WSL player - Chelsea had previously confirmed the international arrival of Russian defender Alsu Abdullina ahead of time in December.
The 22-year-old will hope to command more regular playing time at Villa, having been a fringe player at Arsenal in the first half of the season – she made only four WSL appearances and started in only one of those outings.
Patten was developed by the Arsenal youth system and made her first-team debut back in 2017. She then took the opportunity to play college soccer in the United States, representing both Florida State University and the University of South Carolina during her time in America.
Upon graduating, she returned to sign a first professional contract with Arsenal. The move to Villa will now help the former England junior international to take the next step in the short-term.
“Anna is a key signing for us and will bring both quality and experience to the team,” Villa boss Carla Ward told AVFC.co.uk. "She is a young English player with huge potential and we believe this is a great chance for her to continue her development."