Castello Lukeba (20) has finally sealed his move to RB Leipzig, the Lyon have announced. The Ligue 1 side’s youth product was adamant he would leave his parent club and had set his heart on a move to Leipzig at the very beginning of the summer transfer window. Les Gones have rejected up to three bids from the Red Bull-owned outfit – who viewed Lukeba as the ideal replacement for Joško Gvardiol, the latter having sealed a €90m move to treble-winners Manchester City.
The deal entered its closing stages on Wednesday when Lukeba convinced Lyon boss and Eagle Football owner John Textor to let him go. The 20-year-old then underwent his medical the following day with Lyon and Leipzig thrashing out a €35m deal. The French U21 international is the second gem coming through the ranks of the famed OL Academy to earn a big money move abroad this year after Malo Gusto’s switch to Chelsea. Although OL have signed experienced centre-back Duje Ćaleta-Car, it is a big blow for Laurent Blanc and his side’s ambitions – although an expected one given their financial woes. They have received a €34m fee including bonuses for him, as well as a 20% cut of the profit on a future transfer.
Lukeba is the fourth Ligue 1 player to sign for Leipzig this summer after PSG centre-back El Chadaille Bitshiabu, Lens forward Loïs Openda as well as PSG attacking midfielder Xavi Simons – the Dutchman joined for a season-long loan only.
GFFN | Bastien Cheval