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Marcel Kittel to join Team Katusha Alpecin in January after signing a two-year deal

Marcel Kittel will join Team Katusha Alpecin in January Photo: PA

Leading sprinter Marcel Kittel will join Team Katusha Alpecin in January after signing a two-year deal.

The German, who currently rides for Quick-Step Floors, won five stages of this year's Tour de France and had looked well placed to hold on to the green jersey until a crash ended his race.

Katusha general manager Jose Azevedo said: "We are very happy to have Marcel in the team. We can say that he is at the moment the best sprinter in the world. He will be one of our most important riders and can look forward to strong team support."

Replacing Kittel at Quick-Step is Italian Elia Viviani, who has spent the last three years with Team Sky.

Viviani is known as one of the most versatile riders in the peloton, having won 45 races on the road as well as the Olympic omnium title and five European gold medals on the track.