Northern Ireland international striker Kerry Beattie has signed for Scottish Premier League side Glasgow City from Glentoran.
Beattie has signed a three-and-a-half year deal with the club, who currently sit second in the SWPL1 table. They are behind only Rangers by two points.
The striker helped Glentoran win the Danske Bank Women’s Premiership last season. She ended the campaign as the league’s top goalscorer, finding the net on 23 occasions.
Glentoran also picked up a domestic cup double, with Beattie at the heart of the success.
It’s an historic move as it is the first time a Northern Ireland side have received a fee for a professional player.
Beattie has been capped six times for the Northern Ireland senior side, including starting in the 2023 World Cup qualifying fixtures against Latvia and Austria. As well as featuring in games with Luxembourg, North Macedonia, and England at Wembley Stadium.
Beattie netted her first international goal against North Macedonia in a 9-0 win at Seaview.
The teenager becomes Eileen Gleeson’s first signing for reigning champions Glasgow City ahead of the second half of the campaign.
Beattie recently revealed she put her studies on hold in order to chase her dream of making Kenny Shiels’ squad for the Euros.
Upon signing, Beattie told the club’s website: “I feel absolutely delighted to be joining a team as prestigious as Glasgow City. I am looking forward to this next chapter in my life and the opportunity to develop my game further greatly excites me. I can’t wait to meet the team and get to work.”Embed from Getty Images
A transfer for the history books
Glentoran Chairman Stephen Henderson commented on the historic milestone of Beattie’s move.
“This is another historic day for Glentoran FC and women’s football in Northern Ireland,” he said. “Following on from the announcement yesterday of our captain, Jess Foy becoming the first professional female player based in Northern Ireland, we have moved quickly to professionalise our squad.
“This was designed to reward those players for their commitment and talent. But also to protect the club’s investment in their development. It’s a testament to the progress we have made. We are the single largest contributing club to the International team’s success, but with that success comes interest from full-time professional clubs.
“Before professionalisation, we risked losing these players for no return on our investment. Today, we are proud to be trailblazers again, having signed Kerry Beattie on a professional contract, we have now become the first Northern Irish club to ever receive a transfer fee for a female player. Kerry’s transfer on a full-time contract with Glasgow City FC, thereby moving from Northern Ireland’s most successful club to Scotland’s most successful club, clearly demonstrates a pathway for all our aspiring young talent.”
The striker has been handed the No.11 shirt. Beattie could make her debut as soon as this weekend in the Scottish Women’s Cup against Queen’s Park.