Soccer: Nippon TV Beleza attacker Endo to join Angel City FC in U.S. league

© Kyodo News

Nippon TV Beleza forward Jun Endo will move to Los Angeles-based NWSL expansion franchise Angel City FC, the Japanese WE League women's club said Tuesday.

The 21-year-old was a member of Nadeshiko Japan, the women's national soccer team, for the Tokyo Olympics and also part of the squad for the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup in France as a 19-year-old.

According to Angel City FC, one of two new teams joining the National Women's Soccer League in 2022, the deal is a two-year contract with an optional third year.

"I treasure my three years with Beleza that have become a big part of my soccer career," Endo said in a statement.

"I learned the hard way at the Tokyo Olympics that I rank way below international players in all levels -- technique, tenacity, hard work, physical fitness. I want to become a player who is more competitive at the world level and wins the hearts of fans."

A native of Fukushima Prefecture, Endo is an attacker known for her excellent left foot and sharp dribbling moves.

She helped Japan win the FIFA U-20 Women's World Cup in 2018, a year before she signed with Nippon TV Beleza. She was part of a player development program at JFA Academy Fukushima before turning pro.

She has been capped for Japan 21 times, scoring one goal.