Sam Kerr signs new two-year Chelsea contract

Chelsea striker Sam Kerr has signed a new two-year contract to keep her at the club until 2026.

The Australia captain’s existing deal was set to expire this summer, but The Athletic reported in January she had agreed a deal in principle to extend her stay with the west London club.

As part of the contract announcement, Stamford Bridge and Kingsmeadow have been temporarily re-named in Kerr’s honour. Stamford Bridge has been renamed ‘Samford Bridge’ and Kingsmeadow ‘Kerrsmeadow’. A sign will be installed at the Britannia Gate entrance to Stamford Bridge from Thursday until Sunday.

“It’s an honour to play for Chelsea and it’s so cool to see the hallowed turf renamed for me — what a welcome home,” Kerr said. “I have so many memories playing at Kingsmeadow and The Bridge and I’m looking forward to doing that all again next season. I can’t wait to be back playing in front of a packed crowd of our incredible fans doing what we do best – winning and bringing home silverware.”

Kerr scored four goals in eight Women’s Super League appearances during the 2023-24 season as Chelsea secured a record-extending fifth successive title, but missed the second half of the campaign after suffering an anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) rupture in January.

Colombia striker Mayra Ramirez was subsequently brought in from Levante for a then world record fee, meaning new head coach Sonia Bompastor will have three striking options at her disposal once Kerr and fellow forward Mia Fishel return from their respective ACL injuries.

Kerr joined Chelsea in 2019 from Chicago Red Stars and last signed fresh terms in November 2021.

The 30-year-old won successive WSL golden boots during her first two full seasons in England and has scored 99 goals in 128 matches for Chelsea, winning five WSL titles, three FA Cups and two League Cups.

“We are delighted that Sam has extended her deal with the club,” general manager Paul Green said. “Sam is a leader and one of the world’s best strikers and goalscorers. She has been very important to our success, and we look forward to welcoming her back from injury next season.”

Kerr will appear in court next year after being charged with the alleged racially aggravated harassment of a police officer in January. She pleaded not guilty at a hearing in March and is due to appear at a trial at Kingston upon Thames Crown Court, south-west London, on February 3, 2025. The trial is expected to last between four and five days.



What does Kerr’s harassment charge mean for Australia striker and her Chelsea future?

How important is this for Chelsea?

Kerr is one of the game’s biggest stars and when she returns from her ACL injury her impact will be felt on the pitch in terms of her attacking threat but also off the pitch in terms of her commercial value.

She was the poster goal of Australia’s 2023 World Cup, scoring an iconic goal against England in the semi-finals, and also made history by becoming the first female footballer to feature on the cover of the 2023 FIFA video game series last year.

Chelsea always conduct their business very early on and even if Kerr was in a vulnerable position in January given her ACL injury — rehabilitation usually lasts nine to 12 months — all signs pointed to her staying in west London. As former manager Emma Hayes said in January: “Sam loves Chelsea and Chelsea loves Sam.”

It is the first deal announced since head coach Sonia Bompastor was appointed as Emma Hayes’ replacement in May. The question is how Bompastor will use her aforementioned attacking options once they are all fit.

(Richard Heathcote/Getty Images)

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