Birmingham City: Lucy Staniforth submits transfer request as Brianna Visalli joins

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Staniforth strike gives England early lead against Japan

Birmingham midfielder Lucy Staniforth has submitted a transfer request to the Women's Super League club.

The 26-year-old, a member of the England squad to finish fourth at the World Cup earlier this month, has one year left on her contract.

Staniforth's only appearance in France came as a substitute during the last-16 win over Cameroon.

Meanwhile, the Blues have signed American attacking midfielder Brianna Visalli from WSL rivals West Ham.

The 24-year-old scored five goals in 30 games for the Hammers after joining from Chicago Red Stars last summer, and is eligible for England through her mother.

"She'll give us experience, consistency and leadership in midfield," said Birmingham manager Marta Tejedor.

Staniforth to continue Blues exodus?

If Staniforth is allowed to move on, she would become the latest big name departure from the Blues.

England's Ellen White, who scored six goals at the World Cup - the same number as Golden Boot winner Megan Rapinoe - left the club to join Manchester City in May.

Meanwhile, defender Aoife Mannion, has followed White to City on a two-year deal.

Wales midfielder Hayley Ladd also left Birmingham after helping the club to a fourth-place finish in England's top-flight last term, joining Manchester United for the new campaign.

Staniforth played for Notts County, Bristol Academy, Liverpool and Sunderland earlier in her career.

BBC Sport has launched #ChangeTheGame this summer to showcase female athletes in a way they never have been before. Through more live women's sport available to watch across the BBC this summer, complemented by our journalism, we are aiming to turn up the volume on women's sport and alter perceptions. Find out more here.

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