INAC Kobe Leonessa forward Mana Iwabuchi will join England’s Aston Villa on a free transfer, The Japan Times has learned, making her the first Japanese player to enter the increasingly prominent Women’s Super League in over six years.

The move, which is expected to be announced early next week, will see Iwabuchi sign a contract with the Birmingham-based side, which is playing its first season in the English women’s top flight since 2004.

INAC announced Iwabuchi’s departure from the club on Tuesday without confirming her destination. The club said she would participate in the remainder of the Empress’s Cup, Japan’s equivalent of the Women’s F.A. Cup, which will hold its final on Dec. 29. Kobe will play Albirex Niigata Ladies in a Dec. 19 quarterfinal at Kanseki Stadium in Utsunomiya, Tochigi Prefecture.