The 29-year-old will join the Gorgie Girls after the expiration of her contract with Southampton in the coming days. On the South Coast she helped the Saints reach the second tier of women’s football south of the border with a play-off victory against Wolverhampton Wanderers.
Rood is a striker with prior experience of playing with Bristol City, Lincoln Ladies, Lewes and Serie A side Juventus, with whom she won the Italian title back in 2017/18.
Injury-prone for a lot of her earlier career back in the regional leagues of New Zealand, she credits her post-2015 success in Europe with going on a strictly vegan diet.
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It’s the second forward recruited in the window after the capture of Georgia Timms from Lewes last month. Rood is the fourth signing of the summer after Ciara Grant and Emma Brownlie also joined from Rangers. The latter made history by becoming the first ever signing made by the club on a full-time professional contract.
Manager Eva Olid has been keen to add experience to her squad after her team finished in eighth place in last season’s SWPL 1 with a unit mostly made up of teenagers.
There has also been some trimming of last year’s group with Claire Delworth, Beth McKay, Lia Tweedie and Clare Williamson being released, while Tegan Browning left to pursue her career in the United States and goalkeeper Ailey Tebbett joined Hibs.
Hearts announced a move into semi-professional status earlier this year as they look to compete in the developing landscape of the women’s game in Scotland.