Duo earn 18-month deals with Blackburn Rovers Ladies

Blackburn Rovers' Emma Doyle
Photo: Jon Super for The FA

Blackburn Rovers Ladies’ Annabel Blanchard and Emma Doyle have signed 18-month deals with the club.

Joining from Everton last summer, central midfielder Doyle has made 16 appearances for Gemma Donnelly’s side so far this season, including 14 starts, and registered three assists in all competitions.

The 21-year-old has struck up a partnership with Natasha Fenton in the middle of the park and the pair have been near ever-presents for Rovers in the FA Women’s Championship this term.

Doyle told rovers.co.uk upon signing: “Obviously I’m delighted to sign my first contract here at Rovers. I’m just grateful to the club and to Gemma for having the faith in me and giving me the opportunity.

“I’m still learning in this league and I’m still got things to add to my game and this club will only help me do that, so to have that security is really good.”

Annabel Blanchard signs

Blanchard, who became Gemma Donnelly’s first permanent signing of 2021 last month, has now committed her future to Rovers by penning a deal until the summer of 2022.

The England U-19 midfielder said: “I’d like to thank Blackburn and Gemma for the opportunity. I’m really excited to get going.

“I’m just ready to start working hard to help the team move up and progress as much as possible.

Rovers boss Gemma Donnelly said: “I was an admirer of Annabel’s from afar for a number of seasons, so to be able to bring her here in the first place was excellent for us.

“Now we’ve confirmed a deal with Annabel which will keep her here until 2022, it bolsters the squad and it adds to the competition with her colleagues within the centre of midfield.”

Also, vice-captain Natasha Fenton has signed a contract extension to remain a Rovers player until at least June 2022.

Natasha Fenton

The midfielder is Rovers’ longest-serving current player with 160 appearances to her name.

Fenton commented: “We’re looking to improve and hopefully establish ourselves and grow as a club. I’m looking
forward to being on that journey and developing as a player.

“Hopefully we can finish strong this year, take that into next season and then look forward to the future.”

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