This year’s W-League season marks 10 years the league has been in operation and the transfer window has once again seen plenty of movement.

A posse of champion Matildas have switched allegiances for this year’s competition. At the same time there’ll be 24 international players who we’ll see take to football fields around the country and an abundant supply of local talent ready to make their mark in the hope of becoming the next national team star.

These are the most exciting names your club has acquired.

Adelaide United: Jenna McCormick

McCormick is one of two Adelaide United signings and the 23-year-old utility – able to play both as a playmaker and central defender – brings plenty of local, foreign and other-sport knowledge.

She returns to Adelaide after playing 26 times with the club between 2012 and 2015 where she won the Adelaide Player of the Season award for 2013-14. McCormick has since played for Canberra United, Stjarnan in Iceland and Norway’s Medkila IL in a league featuring many other Aussies such as Tameka Butt, Emily Gielnik and Chloe Logarzo.

Impressively, McCormick also took part in the Adelaide Crows’ recent 2017 AFLW season where she won a premiership. The Reds will be hoping she can bring that championship formula with her to the W-League this season.
Also keep an eye on: Emma Checker

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Brisbane Roar: Hayley Raso

Hayley Raso has increasingly become one of Australia’s most impressive players since her W-League debut in 2011. Spells at Canberra, Brisbane and Melbourne Victory helped Raso work her way up to being signed by the Portland Thorns in the American National Women’s Soccer League.

Still only 23, Raso has played 22 times for the Matildas but has been an important cog in the side under Alen Stajcic, either as a starting player or deputising on the wing as an impact player off the bench and now returns to her hometown club to try and add to the NWSL championship recently won with Portland.
Also keep an eye on: Cheung Wai-ki

Canberra United: Laura Bassett

At 34, Laura Bassett will be one of the older campaigners to kit-up in the W-League this season and brings experience from some of the biggest club names in world football. Birmingham, Leeds United, Arsenal and Chelsea have all previously adorned their squads with Bassett and the defender has now chosen to chance her arm in Australia.

Bassett has played 61 times for England since 2003 and has been involved in some of her country’s biggest achievements in women’s football including runners-up at the 2009 Euro and semi-finalists in the 2017 edition, but more notably was in the squad which finished third at the 2015 Women’s World Cup where she infamously scored an own-goal in the closing minutes of the semi-final to seal England’s defeat to Japan and agonisingly miss out on reaching the final.
Also keep an eye on: Ellie Carpenter

Melbourne City: Yukari Kinga

Japan have been one of football’s most successful women’s national teams and 33-year-old Yukari Kinga has rode the wave of success having played in three World Cups, winning it once in 2011 and coming second in 2015 as well earning an Olympic silver medal in 2012. Additionally Kinga has won a total of eight league and eight cup titles in the Japanese league and has spent time at Arsenal.

No stranger to the W-League having played for Canberra United last season Kinga now adds to an intimidating spine of world class players in Melbourne City’s lineup and will anchor the team from a holding midfield role where she’ll link up with captain Jess Fishlock and supply Matildas’ striker Kyah Simon.
Also keep an eye on: Kyah Simon

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Melbourne Victory: Laura Alleway

Victory’s most recent history in the W-League makes for sore reading, finishing plumb last in the last two seasons and conceding 28 goals both times – an unimpressive figure for just 12 games in a season.

Coach Jeff Hopkins has seen to rectify the issue for the upcoming campaign with the acquisition of Australian national team defender Laura Alleway. An imposing figure at 5’11” and the experience of 49 national team caps behind her, Alleway makes the switch back to the team she began her senior career with after completing her first season in the NWSL with Orlando Pride.
Also keep an eye on: Jeon Ga-eul

Newcastle Jets: Emily van Egmond

Three new American signings to line up in the Hunter region this season yet it’s an Australian who most W-League fans will look forward to watching most. Emily van Egmond, a most recognisable name, face and right foot will play in the domestic competition for the first time in almost three years and her quality with the dead ball, long shooting and defence-splitting passes will instantly make Newcastle a difficult team to match up on.

It will be van Egmond’s fourth spell at the Jets and her last stint earned her the Julie Dolan Medal as the best player of the 2014 year. The 24-year-old attacking midfielder comes back to Australia after an early departure from German Bundesliga club VfL Wolfsburg with whom she’d won the league-cup double with last year and her inclusion will help ease the pain of losing Chloe Logarzo to Sydney FC.
Also keep an eye on: Tori Huster

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Perth Glory: Raquel Rodriguez

Raquel Rodriguez hasn’t played more than two years of senior club football but already has a list of achievements to give your eyebrows a stitch. Having grown up in a tough Costa Rican environment where women’s football is scarcely nourished, the forward grafted her way to the American collegiate system and scored the winning goal in her NCAA College Cup final in 2015; a month later she was picked second overall by Sky Blue FC in the 2016 NWSL Draft.

In her first NWSL season she won the Rookie of the Year award and a season later scored the fastest goal in the league’s history with a goal 24 seconds from kickoff. A teammate of Sam Kerr’s at Sky Blue and now joining her at Perth, “Rocky” will become the first Costa Rican to play in the W-League.
Also keep an eye on: Nicola Bolger

Sydney FC: Lisa De Vanna

One of the best forwards in the world to step onto a football field Lisa De Vanna will showcase her talents for Sydney FC this season – her seventh W-League team.

The 32-year-old is still a top shelf footballer even after burning up and down flanks 126 times for Australia and has kept herself in good nick having spent 2017 playing in the Victorian National Premier Leagues competition with South Melbourne.

De Vanna is a needed asset for Sydney following the departure of striker Kyah Simon and will hope to add to the three W-League championships she’s claimed so far.
Also keep an eye on: Emily Sonnett

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Western Sydney Wanderers: Lee Falkon

Western Sydney Wanderers have made a giant 13 signings in the lead-up to the new season – the most of any club – but it’s the lopsided journey of Israeli midfielder Lee Falkon which tells the best tale.

Falkon’s upbringing was like navigating choppy waters as there were few outlets for her to play football as a junior and at one point was training with the women’s under-19 national team as a 13-year-old. She first played senior football with perennial Israeli cellar-dwellers ASA Tel Aviv University and helped turn their fortunes to win five league and three cup titles in her time at the club.

Falkon then tried her hand at the NCAA college system in America but decided there was too much studying involved and left. Her career has since taken her to Denmark where she proved her quality with Brøndby to reach a UEFA Champions League quarter-final and to Germany with MSV Duisburg.
Also keep an eye on: Marlous Pieëte

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Football and Aussie rules commentator, writer and radio host/producer from Melbourne.