Women's Football

Bayern Munich sign Lyon midfielder Saki Kumagai on two-year deal

Jamie Spencer
Five-time Champions League winner Saki Kumagai will join Bayern Munich when she leaves Juventus this summer
Five-time Champions League winner Saki Kumagai will join Bayern Munich when she leaves Juventus this summer / Jonathan Moscrop/Getty Images

Bayern Munich have completed a major coup in the transfer market by signing 2011 World Cup winner and five-time Champions League winner Saki Kumagai from Lyon.

Kumagai has signed a two-year contract with Bayern and has stated that her ambition is to win the Champions League with the club after being impressed when she faced them with Lyon last season.

“I am very happy and very much looking forward to playing for FC Bayern Munich. I was looking for a new challenge and when we played Bayern in the Champions League quarter-finals last year, I noticed how unified Bayern are and that they are a very good team,” Kumagai told FCBayern.com.

“That sparked my interest in the club. I want to win the Champions League with Bayern Munich!"

Kumagai rose to international prominence when she was part of the Japan team that won the 2011 World Cup. She made the switch to Europe after that tournament, joining German giants Frankfurt, before being poached by Lyon just two years later.

The defensive midfielder helped Lyon, who had won Champions League titles in 2011 and 2012, re-establish their European dominance and was a crucial part of the side that won five in a row.

Saki Kumagai
Kumagai played a decisive role in the 2016 Champions League final / Marco Luzzani/Getty Images

Kumagai herself particularly shone in the 2016 final against Wolfsburg, scoring both the winning penalty in the shootout and being named player of the match.

Bayern hope all of that experience will help take them to the next level.

“She brings unbelievable international experience and will play an important role in our team's further development,” Bayern sporting director Bianca Rech said of the new arrival.

Head coach Jens Scheuer added, “Saki is an incredibly ball-safe, defensive midfielder who also plays in central defence for her national team. So she is very flexible, which is an advantage for us.”

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