Liverpool willing to break transfer record for Canadian teenager

Olivia Smith, Quinn and Simi Awujo warm up during a Canada training session ahead of the FIFA Women's World Cup Australia & New Zealand 2023 at Melbourne Rectangular Stadium on July 20, 2023 in Melbourne, Australia.
-Credit: (Image: Mackenzie Sweetnam/Getty Images)

Liverpool is prepared to make a record transfer investment for its women's side. It is hopeful of completing a deal for Sporting CP's Canadian star Olivia Smith.

Liverpool Women already broke its transfer record last summer, signing Sophie Roman Haug for $127,000 (£100,000/€118,000). Smith has a release clause in her Sporting contract, and can be signed for $316,000 (£250,000/€296,000).

It comes after an impressive fourth-placed finish in the WSL for Liverpool, and with the women's team moving to the historic Melwood training site. Matt Beard, who led the Reds to the title in the early days of the Super League, is once again bringing success, and more than 23,000 fans watched the Merseyside derby at Anfield last season (a 1-0 loss, unfortunately).

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Smith, 19, is a forward or attacking midfielder who already has 19 caps for Canada, having made her debut as a 15-year-old. She has only been at Sporting for one season, but scored 13 goals in 18 league appearances, attracting the attention of Liverpool.

She was named as the league's Player of the Year and Young Player of the Year for her efforts. Sporting came second, narrowly losing out to Benfica courtesy of one fewer win and one more draw.

Should Liverpool secure Smith's signing, it would likely be the first of many pieces of business this summer. With the transfer ecosystem in the women's game still quite different to the men's game, a number of important players departed for free at the end of their contracts this summer, including Emma Koivisto and Shanice van de Sanden. Koivisto has already secured a move to AC Milan.

Olivia Smith of Canada poses during the official FIFA Women's World Cup Australia & New Zealand 2023 portrait session on July 17, 2023 in Melbourne, Australia.
Olivia Smith went to the Women's World Cup with Canada last year. -Credit:Maddie Meyer - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images says: It would be great to see this move completed.

Liverpool probably got left behind a little bit in the women's game after some initial success in the WSL era, and only recently returned from the second tier. But a fourth-placed finish back in the top flight was a sign that things are once again moving in the right direction.

More than doubling the previous transfer record, itself only set last summer, would be a statement of intent from the club. Coupled with the really exciting move to Melwood, it shows that the women's side of the club is being taken seriously, taking steps towards future success.