Rianna Jarrett is one of nine players who to be released by the Seagulls. PA
On the Move

Ireland striker Jarrett set for pastures new as Brighton announce departure

Cork’s Megan Connolly has been offered a new contract at the Seagulls.

REPUBLIC OF IRELAND international Rianna Jarrett is one of nine players who will leave Brighton & Hove Albion this summer.

The Wexford striker has been on the books of the Women’s Super League [WSL] since signing her first professional contract in January 2020.

Having scored two goals on her debut, the Covid-19 pandemic soon brought Jarrett’s bright start — to an initial six-month deal — to a sudden halt. In June, she was rewarded with a new contract for the 2021/22 season.

In November, the 26-year-old scored her first WSL goal and pushed on from there in the Seagulls ranks alongside Irish team-mate Megan Connolly — who has been offered a new deal.

But today, Brighton announced Jarrett as one of nine members of Hope Powell’s squad whose contracts will not be renewed when they expire on 30 June. Kirsty Barton, Jodie Brett, Cecilie Fiskerstrand, Nora Heroum, Hollie Olding, Laura Rafferty, Beth Roe and Rebekah Stott are the eight others.

“We have had to make some tough decisions and it’s always a difficult time when players are released,” former England player and manager Powell said.

“I’d like to thank all the girls who are leaving for their tremendous efforts during their time with the club, especially in the last year when the pandemic has challenged everyone.

“They will always be welcome visitors to Brighton, and we will do all we can to assist them if they decide to stay in the professional game.

“Unfortunately Jodie has had to retire because of injury and Stotty is back in Australia having treatment for cancer, as everyone is aware. We are in touch with Stotty and our thoughts are with her.”

Cork ace Connolly is one of several players to be offered a new contract after her impressive individual season, while goalkeeper Meg Walsh and defender Victoria Williams have signed new deals. Lee Geum-Min will return to Manchester City when her loan period ends on 30 June.

chelsea-v-brighton-and-hove-albion-fa-womens-super-league-kingsmeadow Connolly with Jarrett. PA PA

Jarrett is now on the hunt for a new club, having experienced a colourful career to date.

Marking out her talent as a dangerous goal-scorer as a youngster, Jarrett then suffered three cruciate ligament injuries but bounced back in style to have a sensational 2018, as she bagged 27 goals and was named Women’s National League [WNL] Player of the Year after helping Wexford Youths to win a WNL, FAI Cup and Development Shield treble.

Her star continued to rise from there in the domestic league and further afield, as she established herself as a key member of the Girls In Green squad, and the move to Brighton soon followed.

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