England and Chelsea midfielder Fran Kirby, 29, helped the Lionesses to glory at last summer's EUROs but has missed a large spell of the season with a knee injury
England midfielder Fran Kirby will stay at Chelsea until at least 2024 after the club triggered a one-year extension on her contract.
The 29-year-old joined the Blues from Reading in 2015 and has since gone on to become the club's leading scorer with 110 goals in 175 appearances. Kirby has so far enjoyed a trophy-laden spell at Kingsmeadow, having won 13 pieces of silverware including five Women's Super League [WSL] titles and four FA Cups.
The midfielder's contract was due to expire at the end of this season, however, Chelsea have exercised an option to keep her until next summer.
Kirby's 2022/23 campaign has been hampered by injury, with Chelsea confirming earlier this month the England international is set for a "significant period" on the sidelines while she undergoes surgery on a knee problem.
The issue will rule her out of this summer's Women's World Cup in Australia and New Zealand, with captain Leah Williamson and forward Beth Mead also set to miss the showpiece tournament.
Kirby's absence will be a big miss for the Lionesses. The 29-year-old is widely regarded as one of the most technically gifted players in world football and has received a number of personal accolades during her time at Chelsea.
After notching 25 goals in all competitions in 2017/18, she won the PFA and FWA Player of the Year award. In 2021, she was also named Barclays WSL Player of the Season and PFA Players’ Player of the Year – an award decided by votes from fellow professional footballers.
On the international stage, Kirby helped the Lionesses to glory at last summer's EUROS, starting all six games for Sarina Wiegman's side.