• Kyodo News


Japan striker Eriko Arakawa will join FC Gold Pride, the San Francisco Bay Area franchise of the U.S.-based Women’s Professional Soccer league, NTV Beleza said Friday.

The 29-year-old Arakawa, known for her Afro-style hair, joins national squad teammates Homare Sawa and Aya Miyama in the league, which is set to commence this spring.

Sawa will play for the Washington Freedom, and Miyama will suit up for the Los Angeles Sol.

The Bay Area team picked Arakawa in the third round of the WPS international draft last September, a month after she helped Japan to a fourth-place finish at the Beijing Olympics — the country’s best result in Olympic women’s soccer history.

“Playing overseas has been one of my dreams. I decided to seize this opportunity,” Arakawa said.

Arakawa has scored 20 goals in 68 matches for Japan.

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