Everton F.C. have completed the signing of striker Leandro Rodriguez from Uruguayan División side River Plate Montevideo for an undisclosed fee.
Having put pen to paper on a four-year deal at Goodison Park, Rodriguez, 22, becomes the Toffees’ fourth summer recruit following the arrivals of Gerard Deulofeu, Mason Holgate, and Tom Cleverley.
The 22-year-old bagged 19 goals in 71 games for his boyhood club, and Everton manager Roberto Martinez is expecting him to contribute to the first-team straight away.
“He’s a young talent – one of those elite, talented youngsters who we like to bring in,” Martinez told the club’s official website. “Mason Holgate is a clear example of a really strong, young English defender and Leandro Rodriguez is a young striker with a real knack of scoring goals.
“But he’s much more than that, too. His contribution is a lot more than that and hopefully we can provide a path where he can develop and enjoy his football. If he can do that, clearly that’s going to bring goals to the first team.
“He probably won’t [need time with the Under-21s] because he has played enough games with his first team in Uruguay in a really competitive league.
“If you look at the amount of strikers that come through those environments, you don’t get surprised about the quality of these players.
“I am not saying that to put pressure on the boy, but he is a player we can be very much excited about in the future.”
Not-for-sale Marcos Lopes sold to Monaco
Manchester City F.C. have sold highly-rated midfielder Marcos Lopes to AS Monaco in a deal believed to be worth in the region of £9 million.
On Friday, speaking ahead of Saturday’s English Premier League fixture against Watford at the Etihad Stadium, City boss Manuel Pellegrini said: “Marcos is still a player here for Manchester City. We will see his future in the next hours. I think Marcos needs to play more in another club. He is a very good player.
“I am sure in the future he will be part of our club but for this year he must continue trying to play as much football as he can. Here he has a lot of competition with David [Silva] and Samir [Nasri] so it is better for him to go on loan.”
When asked if any move for the Portugal Under-20 international would be temporary one, Pellegrini added: any move would be merely a loan. He said: “Yes, just for this season.”
However, less than an hour later, an official statement on the club’s official website read: “Marcos Lopes has joined AS Monaco on a permanent deal. The fee is believed to be in the region of £9 million.”
The sale of Lopes comes just hours ahead of the imminent arrival of Kevin de Bruyne from Wolfsburg for a rumoured fee of €70 million.