Liverpool have announced the acquisition of Fabio Carvalho from Fulham at £8 million ($10 million).
The 19-year-old will join Liverpool on July 1 when his contract with the newly-promoted Cottagers expires.
He has agreed to a five-year contract with Liverpool, who will pay an initial fee of £5 million ($6.2 million) and a further £3 million ($3.7 million) in performance-related bonuses. The Reds have also included a 20% sell-on provision in the agreement.
Liverpool attempted to recruit Carvalho in January, reaching an agreement with Fulham at 6 p.m. on the last day of the transfer market.
It was agreed that he would stay at Fulham for the rest of the season, but Liverpool were unable to finish the required paperwork before the 11 pm deadline, therefore the transaction fell through.
Regardless, Anfield insiders were always certain that Carvalho would finish up on Merseyside. Following Harvey Elliott’s contentious departure to Liverpool in 2019, the departing sports director, Michael Edwards, and his successor, Julian Ward, have worked hard to mend fences with Fulham.
Ward has a solid connection with Fulham manager Marco Silva and chief executive Alistair Mackintosh, and Liverpool are thought to be happy with the manner Mackintosh and Tony Khan, the Cottagers’ vice-president, have handled discussions.
The transaction that brought Harry Wilson to Craven Cottage last summer helped relations, and Liverpool enabled Neco Williams to come on loan at the end of January. Both played significant roles in Silva’s team’s promotion to the Premier League.
What role will Carvalho play at Liverpool?
Carvalho has already made an impression in the Premier League, appearing in four games towards the conclusion of the 2020-21 season and scoring once.
This season has been his true breakout. He has been a fixture in Silva’s lineup, scoring 11 goals in 38 appearances across all competitions, and earned his first call-up to the Portugal U21 team.
He is flexible enough to play in almost any position across the front line, although Liverpool insiders think his best positions are off the left-wing or as a No 10.
He is also at ease playing wide on the right, as a No. 9 or even in a midfield three, but the word from Anfield is that he will start in the front line.
He is regarded as a player with enormous potential, which has sparked attention from teams like as Manchester City, Borussia Dortmund, and Paris Saint-Germain, among others.
He has already visited the AXA Training Centre with Fulham’s permission to conduct a physical and speak with Jurgen Klopp and his coaching staff, and is said to be preparing for pre-season when he will join up with his new teammates.
Carvalho, who has been with Fulham since the age of 12, qualifies for a ‘home-grown’ designation in the Premier League.
He will join Elliott, Trent Alexander-Arnold, Curtis Jones, Ibrahima Konate, Kaide Gordon, and Tyler Morton, all of whom are 23 or younger, as part of an intriguing core of growing young players at Anfield.
This summer, the Reds are also hoping to recruit Celtic youngster Ben Doak and Aberdeen’s 18-year-old right-back Calvin Ramsay.