Despite widespread reports of a deal being done, Bayern Munich manager Niko Kovac stopped short of confirming that Bayern’s transfer bid for Canadian sensation Alphonso Davies was completed.
Kovac, however, was willing to offer plenty of praise of the talented youngster his team is on the verge of signing from the Vancouver Whitecaps.
Sources confirmed to Goal on Tuesday evening that Bayern and the Vancouver Whitecaps have agreed on a transfer fee, with The Athletic and TSN reporting on Tuesday that the base cost is an MLS-record $13 million (£10m/€11m), with escalator clauses that could see the fee rise to $19 million.
Davies was in Philadelphia on Tuesday to complete his physical and agree on personal terms, the final steps to completing the deal.
“We are on Davies, but we don’t have any concrete answers at this point, but it looks very good,” Kovac told reporters on Tuesday. “He’s very young, and he’s very talented. Lots of clubs want to have him, but I really hope it’s hours or just a few days.”
Once those final steps are completed, Davies will finalize a transfer that will surpass Jozy Altidore’s $10 million (£6m/€7m) move to Villarreal in 2008 as the largest transfer of an MLS player in league history.
“Everything has to work out first. The ink is not dry yet,” Kovac said. “We don’t know exactly what’s going to happen. I don’t know exactly what will happen, but he’s a young player, and young players, when they are as good as him, are very expensive because a lot of clubs are interested in him and I’m sure because a lot of clubs are interested in him the price might go up.”
Davies won’t be able to formally join Bayern until January due to the fact he doesn’t turn 18 until November, and FIFA forbids players to make moves outside of their home country before they turn 18, but Kovac did suggest that if a transfer is completed, Davies could join the club early and train with the German champions if the Whitecaps fail to make the playoffs, which would mean Davies’ season would be over by the end of October. He would still have to wait until the January transfer window, and the end of the Bundesliga winter break, to be eligible to play for the Bavarian side.
Davies has seen his stock skyrocket since his breakout showing at the 2017 CONCACAF Gold Cup, where he won the Golden Boot at the age of 16. He has followed that up with an excellent season with the Whitecaps that has seen him emerge as Vancouver’s best player. His combination of blazing speed and ball skill make him a scout’s dream, and has led to interest from several of Europe’s top clubs, with Real Madrid, Manchester United, Paris Saint-Germain and Borussia Dortmund linked to interest in the 17-year-old Ghanaian-born son of Liberian parents, who has lived in Canada since the age of five.
“He’s very fast, he’s very talented, he’s very good,” Kovac said of Davies. “I believe he has a very big future if he gets the right training.”