Bayern Munich secures Portugal star Palhinha for €49M

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Joao Palhinha

Bayern Munich has successfully signed Portugal midfielder Joao Palhinha from Fulham for a reported fee of 49 million euros ($53 million), marking a significant addition to their squad. The 28-year-old, who moved to Fulham from Sporting Lisbon in 2022 for 22 million euros, has committed to a four-year contract with the German champions.

Bayern Munich had previously come close to signing Palhinha last year. The defensive midfielder had even posed in the club’s kit, but the deal fell through at the last minute due to Fulham’s inability to secure a replacement in time.

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Expressing his joy, Palhinha described the signing as “one of the happiest days of my life,” adding, “This is a dream come true for me… I want to enjoy success with Bayern and win titles.”

Bayern’s sporting director, Max Eberl, highlighted the club’s long-standing interest in Palhinha, saying, “He was highly sought after by Bayern even last summer – and rightly so. It was important that we never lost touch.”

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Palhinha, who has scored twice in 31 international appearances, participated in Portugal’s Euro 2024 campaign, which ended in the quarter-finals against France.

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This signing marks Bayern’s third major acquisition of the summer as the club embarks on a significant rebuild following a trophyless season, their first since 2012. Alongside Palhinha, Bayern has added forward Michael Olise and centre-back Hiroki Ito to their roster. Additionally, Vincent Kompany has taken over as head coach, tasked with returning Bayern to dominance in German football.

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Kompany faces the challenge of reclaiming the Bundesliga title after Bayern’s 11-year streak was broken last season. Bayern was eliminated in the semi-finals of the Champions League by eventual winners Real Madrid, while Bayer Leverkusen clinched the league and cup double under manager Xabi Alonso. Kompany also has the added pressure of the upcoming Champions League final, which will be held at Bayern’s Allianz Arena next season.

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