Ferns skipper joins London club Crystal Palace on loan till end of season

Football Ferns co-captain Ria Percival has moved across London to join Crystal Palace on loan from her Tottenham Hotspur club.

Percival (34) will play for Palace in the English Women’s Championship till the end of the season.

Main photo: Ria Percival in her new playing strip. Photo credit: Crystal Palace.

Palace head coach Laura Kaminski said: “We’re delighted to welcome a player of Ria’s experience, character and quality to Crystal Palace.

“Ria’s skillset perfectly compliments the style of football we are trying to play, and we cannot wait to work with her for the rest of this season.”

Percival, who  has played 166 full internationals for New Zealand, said: “I’m excited to get started. The girls have been great with me so far, and I’ve heard great things about the club.

“Palace have had a good start to the season, so it’s about coming in, bringing my experience and doing whatever I can to help the team.”

Ria Percival … five World Cups and four Olympic Games. Photo: Shane Wenzlick / Phototek.

Percival, who can play in defence or midfield, could make her Crystal Palace debut on Monday January 15 (NZT) when the club meets Blackburn Rovers in the FA Women’s Cup fourth round.

She has been at Women’s Super League club Spurs for more than four years, and is under contract at the club till June 2025.

She began her football career with Auckland’s Lynn-Avon United and her professional career has taken her to F.C Indiana (United States), Ottawa Fury (Canada), FFC Frankfurt and FF USV Jena (Germany), before joining England’s West Ham United in 2018.

She has represented New Zealand at five FIFA Women’s World Cups, and four Olympic Games.

Percival was awarded the New Zealand Order of Merit (MNZM) in the 2024 New Year Honours for her services to football.

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