Scotland’s friendly with Sweden next week signals the beginning of what can be a very exciting year in the career of Caroline Weir.

Weir, who yesterday announced her move to Liverpool, is in the squad for Tuesday’s match in Gothenburg and is fully aware how important the next twelve months could be for both club and country.

Speaking to the Scottish FA website, she said: “2016 could be a really exciting year. The national team is determined to reach the EUROs next year, and we’ve got big games coming up this year that will be decisive in whether we qualify.  Club-wise, I’m eager to earn my place in my new team and play consistently next season.“

The attacking midfielder was unveiled to the media at Anfield yesterday, following previous spells in England with Arsenal and Bristol Academy.

“I’m really excited about the move. I’ve known about it for a wee while, so I’m glad I can finally start talking about it” she said. 

“I moved down to Liverpool last week, it’s great to be here and have a look around Anfield, and now I’m just eager to get started now.

Weir joined Bristol Academy during the 2015 season but despite some impressive performances, the Scotland internationalist could not prevent relegation. When Liverpool, who featured in this season’s UEFA Women’s Champions League came calling, it was a no-brainer. 

She said: “Moving to Liverpool is a huge thing for my career. I knew that when I signed for Bristol halfway through the season that there was a risk of relegation. Unfortunately that happened, and I knew that I had to stay in top-flight football. I like playing in England, so it was an easy decision to sign for Liverpool.”

The 20 year-old is thrilled to move north to Liverpool, and believes that staying in the FA’s Women’s Super League was essential to maintaining her position within the national team set-up where competition for places is high.

She said: “International football is the pinnacle, and to be considered for the national squad you need to be playing consistently at a high standard for your club. When you look at the Scotland squad now, all the players who aren’t playing in Scotland are playing in professional leagues elsewhere. It’s difficult to get into the squad and stay there, so you need to give yourself the best opportunity to be selected.  

Weir was captain of the Scotland Women’s Under-19 team that qualified for the UEFA European Championships in 2014. One of her teammates from back then, Zoe Ness of Mallbackens in Sweden, follows Weir, Megan Cunningham, Chloe Arthur, Fiona Brown, Lizzie Arnot and Lucy Graham as the latest player from Gareth Evans’ team to be called up to the A-squad.

“I’m really happy for Zoe”, she said.

“She’s been doing well in Sweden, and it shows that if you’re performing you have a good chance of being called up to the national team.”

Ness’ call-up, according to the attacking midfielder, highlights the increasing number of talented players coming through the youth ranks, as well as the quality of that squad.

“I think it puts into perspective how good that Under-19 team was that so many players have since been called-up. It’s encouraging to see the quality of young players coming through, and it’s great that they are given opportunities at this level. “

She is under no illusions about the challenge Anna Signeul’s side face in Gothenburg next week, however. Scotland lost both FIFA Women’s World Cup qualifiers to Pia Sundhage’s team in 2014, and with Sweden currently preparing for their play-offs for this summer’s Olympics in Rio, Weir knows they’ll provide difficult opposition.

“Sweden are always a tough team, and we’re looking forward to the challenge”, she explained.

“We played them a while ago and they were a really difficult team to play against, so we know what to expect. 

“They’ll provide a baseline for the rest of the year, and a good opportunity to see where we are now.”