Soccer-Lauren James makes switch from Man Utd to Chelsea


FILE PHOTO: Soccer Football - Women's Super League - Brighton & Hove Albion v Manchester United - The People's Pension Stadium, Crawley, Britain - April 4, 2021 Manchester United's Lauren James in action with Brighton & Hove Albion's Kayleigh Green Action Images via Reuters/Andrew Couldridge

(Reuters) - Chelsea have signed forward Lauren James on a four-year deal from Manchester United, the Women's Super League (WSL) champions said on Friday.

British media reported that the deal, worth 200,000 pounds ($275,220) with bonuses, is the biggest between WSL clubs. The initial fee is around 70,000 pounds ($96,327).

The 19-year-old, who is the younger sister of England men and Chelsea right back Reece James, was part of the United team that finished fourth in the league under manager Casey Stoney last season.

After a stint in the Chelsea youth academy, James made her debut for Arsenal aged 16 in October 2017. She switched to United a year later, where she helped the team achieve promotion to the WSL in the 2018-19 season.

"It's a great feeling to come back home, to a great club, the club I started at the age of six... I'm excited to get started and I can't wait to meet all the fans at Kingsmeadow when the new season kicks in," she said.

James has represented England at Under-17 and Under-19 level and received her first senior call-up as part of a training camp in November.

Chelsea travel to Arsenal for their season opener on Sept. 5.

($1 = 0.7267 pounds)

(Reporting by Dhruv Munjal in Bengaluru)

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