Singapore's Albirex Niigata (S) sign ex-Southampton man and Japan's Asian Cup hero Tadanari Lee

Tadanari Lee was the hero in Japan's 2011 AFC Asian Cup triumph, as he came off the bench to score an extra-time winner in a 1-0 win over Australia in the final. Robert Cianflone/Getty Images

Albirex Niigata (S) have issued a statement of intent in their bid to reclaim the Singapore Premier League in 2022 with the capture of ex-Southampton and Japan forward Tadanari Lee.

Albirex, who won four SPL titles in five years between 2016 and 2020, relinquished their crown last season after finishing two points behind champions Lion City Sailors.

The White Swans are in the midst of assembling their squad for next year and, while their signings are usually younger prospects from Japan's lower leagues or university teams, they will grab the headlines with the capture of Lee.

Now 37, Lee played for English Premier League outfit Southampton from 2011 to 2013 but is perhaps best known for scoring the winning goal in the 2011 AFC Asian Cup final, coming off the bench to win it for Japan in a 1-0 extra-time triumph over Australia.

The forward, who won 11 caps for the Samurai Blue, is also an AFC Champions League winner with Urawa Red Diamonds and J1 League champion from his time at Yokohama F. Marinos.