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USWNT defender Emily Fox joins her former UNC teammates at Arsenal

Dana Gentry
University of North Carolina Athletics
Emily Fox began her career at UNC in 2017 and played four seasons as a Tar Heel.

Former UNC women's soccer player Emily Fox announced her signing for English team Arsenal Women FC from Cary-based National Women's Soccer League team North Carolina Courage on Thursday.

With this move, Fox will be reunited with fellow Tar Heels turned Arsenal players Alessia Russo and Lotte Wubben-Moy. The trio won the 2019 NCAA championship together.

“When I first found out that this [joining Arsenal] was a real possibility, I texted them both and they obviously were so excited and happy for me,” Fox said of her former college teammates in her first interview for her new club.

Fox is joining the ranks of USWNT legends Heather O’Reilly and Tobin Heath, who each also represented both UNC and Arsenal Women.

“I think that it’s really cool that we’ve all had this connection with Arsenal, UNC,” Fox said. “They’ve all had amazing careers and getting to be a part of that is really exciting."

In their time at Chapel Hill, O’Reilly and Heath won the 2006 Women’s College Cup together. O’Reilly’s No. 20 jersey was retired by UNC’s women's soccer program in 2008.

O’Reilly and Heath are also world champions, having won the 2015 Women’s World Cup together. Heath was part of the U.S. team that won the 2019 Women’s World Cup.

“When I think of Arsenal, I think of excellence, I think of a global organization, I think of family. I think of pushing the standards of football and especially in the women’s game,” Fox said in a club statement. “It’s a huge honor to get the opportunity to represent this club and I’m excited to get started and play in front of our supporters.”

Fox could make her debut as early as Sunday, Jan. 14, when Arsenal Women will play Watford FC Women in the FA Women’s Cup.

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Layna Hong is a digital producer at WFAE. She is a graduate from UNC Chapel Hill's Hussman School of Journalism and Media, where she concentrated in graphic design and reporting.