A detailed shot of the corner flag at Kingsmeadow during the Chelsea Ladies v Liverpool Ladies WSL match. Held at the Kingsmeadow Athletics & Fitness Centre, Kingston upon Thames, UK on the 7th October 2017 Photo: Charlotte Wilson for FA

Rumoured Chelsea target opts for Lyon

After much speculation, European champions Lyon have confirmed the signing of French left-back Sakina Karchaoui from fellow Division 1 Feminine side Montpellier HSC.

Reports by French media outlet Actu.fr had previously indicated that the player was likely to move to Barclays FA Women’s Super League champions Chelsea this summer but it is European heavyweights Lyon who have once again come out on top, signing Karchaoui on a one-year deal.

The 24-year-old has made over 100 appearances for Montpellier prior to the expiration of her contract at the Stade Jules Rimet. Karchaoui has been one of the hottest properties on the women’s football market with sides like VfL Wolfsburg, Paris Saint-Germain, and FC Barcelona thought to have also been vying for her services.

Karchaoui joined Montpellier’s academy back in 2009 and made her first-team debut at just 16 years of age. She also represented France during 2016 Olympic Games in Rio and was included in Les Bleues’ FIFA Women’s World Cup France 2019 squad. In addition to this, she was also part of the French side which won the 2017 SheBelieves Cup for the very first time.

The full-back’s arrival at Lyon could all but confirm that fellow defender Alex Greenwood will be playing her football elsewhere next season. A Barclays FA Women’s Super League return seems likely but there are question marks over where the player would fit if she were to join current champions Chelsea or runners-up Manchester City. A return to former club Manchester United would be far from surprising and it is a prospect that has already been mentioned amongst fans.

For now, this is nothing more than speculation but what we do know is that as the Lyon squad continues to grow, there will be the need for outgoings and it will be intriguing to see whether it is English faces who make way.

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