Monaco complete €20m deal for Lyon wonderkid Geubbels

Monaco have completed the €20 million (£18m/£23m) capture of 16-year-old forward Willem Geubbels from Lyon.

Goal revealed last week that a deal was on the cards for the youngster, with those at Stade Louis II prepared to invest heavily in players of huge promise.

They have now acquired a talent being tipped for the top, with Geubbels having already graced Ligue 1, become the youngest player ever to turn out in Europa League competition and figured in the Goal NxGn.

He has also impressed with French national teams at youth level and is looking forward to furthering his career with Monaco.

Geubbels told the club’s official website: “I am very happy to sign for AS Monaco. It is a historic club that plays in the Champions League and competes every year in Ligue 1.

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“The project of the club is ambitious and relies on the development of young players. 

“I cannot wait to meet my new team-mates, to learn from them. I am ready and determined to help the team do great things.”

Vadim Vasilyev, Monaco’s CEO, added: “The arrival of Willem Geubbels forms part of our ambition to develop the best European talent. 

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“Willem has already demonstrated a lot of qualities and great potential. With patience and a lot of work, we are convinced that he will arrive at the top level.”

Geubbels had been with Lyon since the age of nine, making his senior bow in September 2017.

In gracing a meeting with Dijon, he became the first player born in the 21st century to appear in a Ligue 1 fixture.


‘Bale is a Man Utd player’ – Giggs backs Mourinho move for Real Madrid star

Gareth Bale is “a Manchester United player” and would excite supporters at Old Trafford if Jose Mourinho launches a summer raid for the Real Madrid forward, says Ryan Giggs.

Having been linked with a return to England for some time, the former Tottenham star has seen transfer talk resurface of the back of comments made after a Champions League final victory over Liverpool.

Having netted twice off the bench in a 3-1 win over Liverpool, Bale revealed that he will be weighing up his options this summer as he seeks to find competitive football “week in, week out”.

United would be prepared to offer him those opportunities and Giggs – who is now the 28-year-old’s boss with Wales – believes a big-money move could be beneficial to all concerned.

The Red Devils legend told the South China Morning Post: “I’d be a happy United fan, that’s for sure.

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“I think he’s a Man United player. I think the fans would love him. The fans would adore him but again, like I say, he’s at a club where he’s won three Champions Leagues so why would you leave?”

This is not the first time that Bale has sparked exit talk in Madrid and he has opted to stay put in previous windows.

He also has a change of manager to think about at the Santiago Bernabeu this summer, with Julen Lopetegui having inherited the Blancos reins from Zinedine Zidane.

Gareth Bale a Manchester United player Ryan Giggs

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That could influence his decision, with it possible that he will once again delay a move elsewhere in favour of sticking to a contract in Spain due to run until 2022.

“I think there’s been talk for the last three years of Gareth moving. I think he’s at the right club but of course he wants to play,” Giggs added.

“Last season he was frustrated and I can understand that but with a new manager I’m sure that he’ll wait to see how he does and see if he’s part of the new manager’s plans.”


Barcelona angered by Pique’s involvement in Griezmann saga

Barcelona vice president Jordi Mestre has claimed the La Liga champions will hold internal discussions with Gerard Pique following Antoine Griezmann’s decision to stay at Atletico Madrid.

Griezmann had been tipped to complete a switch to Barcelona after the World Cup, but has instead elected to sign a new deal with Atleti, keeping him at the Wanda Metropolitano until 2023.

The France star confirmed he would stay in Madrid in a documentary on Movistar Plus, which was produced by Pique’s investment company Kosmos.

Following the broadcast, Pique tweeted his thanks to Griezmann, wishing him well for the future at Atleti, and has since been force to defend himself, claiming he had no involvement in Griezmann’s decision other than to suggest it be filmed.

However, speaking before Eric Abidal’s official unveiling as the club’s new sporting director, Barca vice-president Mestre expressed his displeasure with Pique’s actions, as well as those of Griezmann’s international team-mate Samuel Umtiti, who shared the documentary on his social media channels.

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“We will speak with [Pique] and Umtiti internally after the World Cup about what happened but we won’t make any more public comments,” he said.

“We feel bad for the supporters who have felt disappointed with the way it happened. The president spoke with Pique to tell him that his involvement provoked surprise and discomfort at club and among supporters.

“We respect Griezmann’s decision to renew with Atletico as we respect any player’s right to choose their future.

“We want committed players who have decided they want to be a success here above anything else.”

Meanwhile, Barca could find themselves on the end of an official complaint from Atleti, who have been outraged by the Catalan giants’ conduct during the saga.

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Barca president Josep Maria Bartomeu confirmed in May he had held talks with Griezmann’s representatives, and the documentary affirmed these claims.

“We will decide whether or not to file a complaint against Barcelona for having negotiated with Griezmann,” Atleti chief executive office Miguel Angel Gil Marin told Spanish publication Ser Deportivos.

“We have proof of contact. Griezmann is the protagonist with us, in Barcelona he would be a soldier in [Lionel] Messi’s service.”


Golovin’s father hints at Arsenal move as Russia star shines in World Cup shop window

Arsenal have been linked with Aleksandr Golovin for some time and appear to be leading the chase for his signature, with his father hinting at a move to England for the CSKA Moscow midfielder.

Premier League interest in the 22-year-old was initially sparked on the back of a number of promising showings from the Russia international at the 2017 Confederations Cup.

Arsenal were among those reported to be monitoring the talented playmaker, with Serie A champions Juventus also in the running for a highly rated performer.

Transfer speculation has resurfaced this summer, with England and Italy still considered to be the most likely destinations for Golovin.

It could be that Emirates Stadium soon becomes his home, with it revealed that the youngster is readying himself for a potential move to London.

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“Sasha [Russian variation on Aleksandr] does not even read this news so as not to clog his head during the World Cup,” Golovin Sr told Komsomolskaya Pravda.

“He now has one thing on his mind: the Russian team. But if such proposals are made, I believe that he will go abroad, play abroad.

“There football is of a different level, there is nowhere to hide. Speeds are different. I’m sure my son will be able to play at a new level.

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“It will be more difficult with a foreign language. But I know that Sasha has already started learning English.”

Golovin’s first outing at a home World Cup saw him shine in a 5-0 mauling of Saudi Arabia.

He contributed two assists to the Russian cause before rounding off the scoring with a classy free-kick.