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Joao Palhinha: Fulham confirm £20m signing of midfielder from Sporting Lisbon on five-year contract

Fulham have made their first summer signing after confirming the £20m transfer of midfielder Joao Palhinha from Sporting Lisbon.

The 26-year-old Portugal international has agreed a five-year deal, with a club option for an additional 12 months, keeping him at Craven Cottage until at least the summer of 2027.

Palhinha, who had reportedly been interesting Wolves, made 33 appearances and scored three goals for Sporting in all competitions last season.

Speaking to club media, Palhinha said: “I’m very glad to be here. It’s a big opportunity for me, for my career, to play in what is – in my opinion – the best league in the world.

“I’ve signed with a great club. The club wanted me, and I chose the club, so I promise the fans that I will do my best, and I hope we can win so many things in this season.”

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Palhinha joins Fulham as former Cottagers forward Fabio Carvalho officially joins Liverpool

Fulham co-owner Tony Khan added: “Joao Palhinha has excelled in Portugal playing both club and international football. He’s been one of our top targets in this window.

“While there were other prominent clubs aiming to secure his signature, we’re thrilled that Joao chose to come here and that he wants to play for Fulham under our great coach Marco Silva, and we believe that Joao will be a valuable addition to strengthen the squad to compete this season in the Premier League.”

Sky Sports News also understands the Cottagers want to sign Shakhtar Donetsk winger Manor Solomon, with the Israel international’s valuation believed to be £7m.

Marco Silva’s side are in the market for a right-back too, and are still waiting for an answer from Wolfsburg to their £8.6m bid for Kevin Mbabu.

Liverpool officially unveil Carvalho

Fulham mark their return to the Premier League against Liverpool at Craven Cottage on August 6, where the west London side could come up against their former player Fabio Carvalho.

On Sunday the 19-year-old was officially unveiled as a Liverpool player after completing his move from Fulham, which had been confirmed in May.

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Watch all of Fabio Carvalho’s goals for Fulham in the Championship from the 2021/22 season

The Portuguese forward has signed a five-year contract at Anfield and will report for the first day of pre-season training on Monday.

“It’s just an amazing feeling to be here at one of the biggest clubs in the world, if not the biggest. So, I’m just happy to be here and I can’t wait to get started,” Carvalho told the club’s official website.

“Once you hear that Liverpool are interested, there’s only one thought in your mind, which is to join them and try to be in and around the team. Hopefully I can achieve big things.

“I spoke with everyone, and the manager, and it just felt so natural. When things become natural it’s just so much easier to make a decision.”

“Marco Silva, the way he plays football and made us play football, is more like attacking football and getting goals, which is similar to how Liverpool play, which is to score goals and dominate games.

“That’s what I’m here to do, to be able to help the team with my assists, creativity and goals. I’m looking forward to it.”

Carvalho, born in Lisbon before moving with his family to England in his youth, will wear the number 28 shirt for Jurgen Klopp’s side and will join fellow summer arrivals Darwin Nunez and Calvin Ramsay at Anfield.

Klopp told the club’s official website: “What a talent he is, hey? A player who can bring a stadium to its feet. He puts his personality into his performances, he is confident and adventurous with the ball, and he wants to make things happen.

“He is a versatile player for sure and is very much an attacking threat with his creativity and dynamism.

“It was a wonderful season for Fulham last year and Fabio was a worthy winner of the individual recognition he got as a result of that.

“It doesn’t really need saying, but it is worth reminding everyone that he will of course need patience. It’s a step up, but one we know he is more than capable of making, which is why we were so keen for so long to sign him for Liverpool.

“He has the perfect environment here to learn and develop. He has a dressing room full of the best teachers in football who will help him settle and adapt.

“With us, a player of Fabio’s profile will get opportunity along with space to improve, learn and develop further. I’m looking forward to working with him and seeing him in a red jersey.”

Follow the summer transfer window with Sky Sports

Who will be on the move this summer before the transfer window closes at 11pm on September 1?

Keep up-to-date with all the latest transfer news and rumours in our dedicated Transfer Centre blog on Sky Sports’ digital platforms. You can also catch up with the ins, outs and analysis on Sky Sports News.


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