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Blues secure Arnell signature

Arnell living out a dream Carlton women's team priority selection Lauren Arnell speaks to Carlton Media about joining the Blues.

Carlton Football Club is delighted to announce it has secured the signature of Lauren Arnell, who will play for the Blues in the inaugural women’s competition in 2017.

The Club was granted permission from the AFL to pre-sign Arnell as a priority selection due to her existing relationship with Carlton.

The inside midfielder, who can also sneak forward, joins teammates Darcy Vescio and Brianna Davey who were named as Carlton’s marquee players in July.

Arnell said she was delighted to be joining the Blues in an on-field capacity after commencing her time at the Club earlier this year. 

“I was honoured to be a part of the bid process at the club. It’s clear Carlton are genuinely committed to successfully developing the women’s side and I witnessed that firsthand,” Arnell said.

“To now be able to line up for the Blues as a player is such a wonderful bonus. Playing under Damien Keeping and his team, as well as alongside marquee players in Brianna and Darcy is an exciting prospect.

"I can’t wait to get started and play my role in developing and shaping our new Carlton’s women’s team for hopefully many years to come.”

Watch Lauren Arnell's highlights

Hailing from Clarkefield in Victoria, Arnell played basketball until she was 17 years old, before taking up football in 2005.

Earlier this year the eight-time Darebin premiership player became the Blues’ first Visy Female Football Ambassador, and played a pivotal role in shaping Carlton’s successful bid for one of the eight licences.

Senior coach of Carlton’s women’s team Damien Keeping said the Club was thrilled to have secured Arnell’s services.  

“We’re delighted Lauren has now joined the Blues in an official playing capacity at Carlton,” Keeping said.

“Lauren is a fantastic player who has already established strong relationships at the club. She also demonstrates terrific leadership qualities both on and off the field.

“With her experience, passion and knowledge of the game there’s no doubt she will be a tremendous asset to the Club.”

The Club will also consider options for up to two female rookie players to join its list, and will select remaining squad members at the upcoming national draft in October.

Arnell’s playing career highlights:

8 x VWFL premierships with Darebin Falcons

6 x Victorian rep

3 x All Australian

2013 Darebin leading goal kicker

Played for the Western Bulldogs in all five AFL exhibition games