Bayern Munich have confirmed they are to sign Canadian teenager Alphonso Davies from Vancouver Whitecaps.
He will join the Bundesliga club at the start of 2019, once he has turned 18. He has signed a contract running until 2023.
Bayern are reported to be paying €10 million to Vancouver for the youngster’s services, although that could eventually rise to €19 million.
Davies was born in a refugee camp Ghana to Liberian parents, and moved to Canada at the age of five. He was granted Canadian citizenship in 2017 and has already made his full international debut for Canada, scoring three goals in just six appearances so far.
He’s made a big impression with the Whitecaps as well. He joined the club in 2015, and he made his debut at the age of just 15 against Ottawa Fury in the Canadian Championship in June 2016, and appeared in Major League Soccer for the first time a month later, appearing from the bench against Orlando City.
He has 54 appearances in Major League Soccer for them, and has been involved in nine goals in 20 appearances in the 2018 seasons, scoring three himself and assisted for six others. Despite his contributions, they are currently ninth out of the 11 teams in the Western Conference. He will remain available to the club until the end of the season.
A big deal for Canadian football
The move was confirmed in Philadelphia on Wednesday, before Bayern’s International Champions Cup defeat to Juventus. Sporting director Hasan Salihamidzić described Davies as “a very big talent” who “offers a lot for the future.” He added that the 17-year-old “already possesses great ability” and that, in light of interest from other “top clubs”, he is “delighted” that he has “chosen FC Bayern.”
“I’m very happy about my transfer to FC Bayern,” said the player himself. “As a kid I always dreamed about this moment and now the dream come true.” He pledged not to lose sight of himself though, saying that “the hard work continues” and that he will “give everything to make the most of this opportunity.”
Meanwhile Jeff Mallett, co-owner of the Whitecaps, called the move “a landmark transfer for our club, country and league,” highlighting the significance of a young Canadian being snapped up by one of Europe’s biggest clubs. “Alphonso is an inspiration example of what is possible,” he continued, “and we are excited about how this transfer showcases our commitment to home grown players for our club and country.”
Quotes via Bayern Munich and Vancouver Whitecaps.