• Kyodo

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Vissel Kobe announced Saturday that former Germany international Lukas Podolski is leaving the J. League first-division club upon the expiration of his contract.

The 34-year-old striker joined Kobe in the summer of 2017 on a 2½-year deal with an estimated annual salary of ¥600 million (about $5.4 million). He scored 15 goals in 52 matches and helped Vissel win its maiden Emperor’s Cup earlier this month.

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