Lauren James of Manchester United Women Manchester United Women v Chelsea Women, WSL football match, Leigh Sports Village, Leigh, UK - 06 Sep 2020 Photo: Lynne Cameron for The FA

Manchester United forward James joins Chelsea on a four-year deal

Manchester United forward Lauren James has joined Chelsea according to reports on The Blues’ official website.

The 19-year-old returns to the club five years on from leaving their academy system. James has signed a four-year deal with Chelsea while it is thought that the club have paid an undisclosed fee to Manchester United to secure her services with further add-ons.

James spent three years with former club Manchester United. She helped the club win promotion to the Barclays FA Women’s Super League in 2018/2019. The player scored 22 goals in just 45 league outings for The Red Devils during her time at The Leigh Sports Village. James was on target for United as they lost 2-1 at Chelsea last season.

After completing her return to Chelsea, James said “It’s a great feeling to come back home, to a great club, the club where I started at the age of six.

“To be able to play for the first team now and come back here to Emma (Hayes) and the rest of the group is a great feeling.

“I’m excited to get started and I can’t wait to meet all the fans at Kingsmeadow when the new season kicks in.”

James becomes Chelsea boss Emma Hayes’ second signing of the summer following the addition of Dutch centre-back Aniek Nouwen. Full-back Hannah Blundell moved in the opposite direction this morning with the player signing a two-year contract with United.

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