VfL Bochum 1848 has agreed the transfer of Armel Bella Kotchap to the Premier League. The 20-year-old central defender will join Southampton, the transfer details have been kept confidential. The U21 international played 43 games for VfL in the 2. Bundesliga and 22 games in the Bundesliga last season.

Sebastian Schindzielorz, Director of Sport at VfL Bochum 1848, says: "Armel Bella Kotchap has taken a steep development curve at VfL Bochum, making it from the U17s of our academy to a Bundesliga player. At the age of 16, we took him to training camps and gradually introduced him to the professional squad. He has become an U21 national player with us, which is also an accolade for our outstanding work with young players and characterises the route to the first team.

His development has been followed not only nationwide but also internationally with great attention. After eleven years in the 2. Bundesliga and now two years in which the Corona pandemic has also left its mark economically, VfL is entering unprecedented dimensions with his transfer. We can now offer the club a broader financial foundation again.

For Armel Bella Kotchap, the step into the Premier League will be a challenge. We wish him all the best at his new club and much success in England."