Siobhan Chamberlain has admitted that she saw her 2018 move from Liverpool to Manchester United as a ‘step up in quality’, despite dropping down a division to play for the newly reformed Red Devils.
Chamberlain’s contract at Liverpool was not renewed at the end of the 2017/18 campaign, and the former England goalkeeper was one of seven players to trade the Merseysiders – then a WSL outfit – for United, who were preparing for their maiden season in the Championship.
The two clubs have since gone in opposite directions, with United promoted to the top flight at the first time of asking and currently in the midst of a title challenge in just their second season in the WSL. Liverpool were relegated to the Championship at the end of the 2019/20 campaign, and came in for heavy criticism for their treatment of the women’s team.
Chamberlain set a bit of a trend when she expressed her frustration at Liverpool’s lack of support for the women’s side upon her departure, with multiple players following suit after the Reds’ 2020 relegation. The goalkeeper has highlighted the differences in environment between United and Liverpool for helping to reignite her enjoyment for club football.
“I think that anyone that signs for Manchester United will tell you the same thing; I don’t think it really needs to be sold to you,” Chamberlain told 90min, when asked how Casey Stoney persuaded her to join the club.
“I think you see the name Manchester United joining women’s football and for me being the first ever professional goalkeeper for Manchester United women is something I’ll always have and will always be there and that’s a great achievement.
“To be involved in a club like Manchester United is fantastic. Everyone says it’s a huge club but until you’re part of it, until you’re actually in it, you don’t realise quite how big that club is. It was a no brainer and knowing that Casey was the manager as well, hearing the plans of how they wanted to integrate the team.
“Although it was a step down, it was probably a step up in terms of the quality and the type of environment that you’re in. For me I was at a point where I was falling out of love with the game of football. I wasn’t really enjoying it, I was just kind of doing it for the sake of doing it. I was enjoying playing for England at the time but club football just wasn’t all that fun.
“Signing for Manchester United made me fall back in love with the game again.”
This season BT Sport is showing more Barclays FA Women’s Super League matches than ever before. Watch Man City v Man Utd on BT Sport 2 from 6.30pm on Friday 12th February.