The Charlton women’s team are delighted to confirm the signings of midfielders Ellie Bailes and Lilli Maple from Crystal Palace Ladies.
The duo follow Gemma Bryan across South-East London, and continue manager Riteesh Mishra’s preparations for the forthcoming FA Women’s Championship season, which has seen Amber Stobbs, Charlotte Kerr and Amelia Ritchie join the women’s team.
For Bailes it’s a return to the club she started at, coming through our Centre of Excellence and appearing 32 times for the first team between 2010 and 2012 scoring thrice. From there, she moved to the US, studying at and playing football for the University of Rhode Island.
On returning to England, Bailes signed for Crystal Palace on 2016, winning their Player of the Season award in her first season with the club.
Maple began her career with Millwall Lionesses, playing there between the ages of 17 and 21 before moving to Palace at the same time as Bailes. She moved back into the FA Women’s Super League 2 the following season to play for Watford before re-joining Palace six months later.
Speaking after training on Tuesday, both players pointed to the management, quality of players and facilities as key factors in joining Charlton. “They’ve got really high standards so I’m really hoping that I can meet those, achieve personally and also help the success of the club in the new league,” said Bailes.
They both also noted the ambitions that management and the club has, going into its first ever season in the newly formed FA Women’s Championship. Maple added: “I’m really excited to be here and hopefully I can develop and grow under the management of Riteesh [Mishra] and James [Marrs].
“I spoke to them and their main goals is to win [the Championship], basically, and I don’t see why that isn’t an achievable goal with the squad that we’ve got.”