Football News

Barcelona transfer news: Eredivisie’s top tackler signs with La Liga giants

By Ben Green

Published: 17:54, 23 May 2019

Barcelona have concluded a deal for Groningen midfielder Ludovit Reis after the teenage talent penned a three-year contract with an option for a further two.

The Catalan club secured the deal for €3.25m and have included a €100m (£88m) buy-out clause in the starlet’s contract.

Who is Reis? Five key things to know… 

  1. Age: 18
  2. Position: Central Midfield
  3. Career path so far: Jong FC Groningen (2017 – 2018), Groningen (2018 – 2019)
  4. Key stat: Reis made the most tackles in the Eredivisie last season, including play-offs, with 114.
  5. Did you know? He became first player born in the 21st century to score in the Eredivisie.

Having progressed through the Groningen academy, Reis made his first-team debut in September 2017 and was a key player in Danny Buijs’ side this season, as the Pride of the North finished eighth in the Dutch top-flight.

The teenage talent racked up 29 appearances in the Eredivisie and mustered a further four in various cup competitions, scoring once and registering one assist.

His first senior goal, netted last season against Sparta Rotterdam, ensured he became the first player born in the 21st century to score in the Dutch first division.

Reis will now swap the comforts of the Noordlease Stadion for the fabled Camp Nou turf, passing his medical on Wednesday, and he couldn’t contain his delight after putting pen to paper.

He said: “It is a special day, a dream come true for me, so I’m very happy today.

“I have a great feeling and will never forget this day. Barcelona is an amazing club.

“I could never imagine this coming true when I was playing with my friends. I dreamt about it every night.

“Now that I am here, I want to learn from the best players in the world. My goal is to make it to the first team and learn from Sergio Busquets.”

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Groningen delighted with deal

Having one of your up-and-coming talents poached by the perennial powerhouses of Europe’s elite is usually a kick in the teeth for aspiring clubs, but Groningen technical director, Mark-Jan Fledderus, took the transfer as a compliment, heaping praise on all parties involved.

He told the club’s official website: “This transfer shows that it is possible for talented young players at FC Groningen, under professional supervision and in a top sports environment, to develop and make the transition from Groningen to a world-famous club like Barcelona.

“But the biggest compliment goes to Ludovit Reis himself, who was named ‘Warrior of the Year’ in 2017 for FC Groningen training for a reason. We wish him every success in Spain.”