ANDRE GOMES

Barca Sign Portuguese Defender from Valencia

ANDRE GOMES

ANDRE GOMES

The midfielder has reportedly penned a five-year deal at the club following an impressive two-season stint at La Liga rivals Valencia and Euro 2016 campaign with winners Portugal

Barcelona have announced an agreement with Valencia to sign Portuguese midfielder Andre Gomes.

Gomes has spent two seasons in La Liga following his move from Benfica in July 2014.

The 22-year-old played a part as Portugal claimed a fairytale Euro 2016 success with their final win over France.

Reports suggest Barcelona paid €40million for Gomes, who made 30 appearances and scored three goals in the league last season.

A 13-time Portugal international, Gomes was apparently also a target for Barca’s fierce rivals Real Madrid.

He is set to become the latest signing for Luis Enrique in the transfer window, with the head coach having added the likes of Samuel Umtiti, Lucas Digne and Denis Suarez to his squad this off-season.

It presents another significant blow for Madrid, who have seemingly missed out on Paul Pogba.

The France international has plenty of admirers at the Santiago Bernabeu, but reports suggest they are unable to meet his valuation with Manchester United the apparent front-runners for his signature.

 

Playing Career

Born in Grijó, Vila Nova de Gaia, Porto District, Gomes joined S.L. Benfica’s youth system at the age of 18, playing his last year as a junior with the Lisbon club. On 28 July 2012, he appeared in his first game with the first team, in a friendly with Gil Vicente FC, and spent his first season as a senior with the reserve side, competing in the second division.

Gomes scored his first goals with Benfica B in league matches against S.C. Braga B (2–2 home draw) and C.F. Os Belenenses(6–0, also at home). On 18 October 2012 he made his official debut with the main squad, playing 25 minutes after coming on as a substitute for Eduardo Salvio and netting in a 4–0 win at S.C. Freamunde, for the campaign’s Taça de Portugal.

Gomes’ momentum in Benfica’s first team continued on 27 October 2012, as he started and scored in a 3–0 away win over Gil Vicente in his first Primeira Liga appearance. However, he continued to be mainly associated with the B-team.

On 31 January 2014, Benfica (and Benfica Stars Fund) sold 100% of Gomes’ economic rights to a private company, Meriton Capital Limited, for €15 million, plus 25% of a future transfer fee. He remained with the Eagles until the end of the season.

On 16 April 2014, Gomes played the full 90 minutes in the second leg of the semi-finals of the Portuguese Cup, scoring the final 3–1 after a brilliant individual effort to help his team – who played with one man less for 60 minutes against FC Porto – win the tie 3–2 on aggregate. He ended the season with 23 games all competitions comprised, helping the club win the first treble in its history (league, cup and Taça da Liga).

On 17 July 2014, Gomes agreed to a one-season loan deal with Valencia CF, joining a host of compatriots including manager Nuno Espírito Santo. Although his economic rights were owned by Peter Lim, a loan deal was arranged to take him andRodrigo to the Spanish club due to Lim’s purchase of the latter.

Gomes made his La Liga debut on 23 August 2014, starting in a 1–1 away draw against Sevilla FC. He scored his first goal in the competition on 22 September, netting the second of a 3–0 away win against Getafe CF.

On 12 June 2015, Benfica and Valencia announced they had reached an agreement on Gomes’ federative rights. Subsequently, he signed a contract with the Spaniards until 30 June 2020.

Gomes represented Portugal at the 2012 UEFA European Under-19 Championship. At the age of 19 he received his first call-up to the senior team, for a friendly against Ecuador on 6 February 2013, but remained unused in the 2–3 home loss.

Gomes made his full debut on 7 September 2014, starting and playing the full 90 minutes in a 0–1 loss to Albania at the Estádio Municipal de Aveiro for the UEFA Euro 2016 qualifiers. He was selected for the squad that appeared in the finals in France, starting in their first game, a 1–1 draw to Iceland in Saint-Étienne where he provided the assist to Nani’s goal before being replaced by Éder late into the second half.

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