Champions League a spur to Moura’s Tottenham move
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LONDON, Feb 1 — Brazil winger Lucas Moura challenged his new Tottenham Hotspur team-mates to win the Champions League after arriving from Paris Saint-Germain on a contract that will keep him with the Premier League club until 2023.
No fee has been disclosed by Spurs following yesterday’s transfer deadline day deal, but reports in the British press this week said the London club had made a bid of £25 million (US$35.4m, €28.5m, RM138m) for Lucas.
“It’s a chapter in my life, a new challenge for me. I am so happy,” Lucas, desperate for first-team action, said in a video posted on Tottenham’s Twitter feed.
The 25-year-old — capped 34 times — expressed his sadness to French sports daily L’Equipe earlier this week at being frozen out by PSG, with his compatriot Neymar’s arrival from Barcelona earlier this season and the form of Kylian Mbappe having seen him fall down the pecking order in Paris.
“I will give my best for this club because I think we have a lot of quality and we can win big things,” said Lucas. “I am so excited because everything is perfect and I’m sure we will do big things together.
“I want to play to help the team. I think the team is very, very strong. We can win a lot of things and why not the Champions League?”
Lucas’ arrival is particularly beneficial to Spurs manager Mauricio Pochettino as he is eligible to play in the Champions League, having not appeared for PSG in Europe’s elite club competition this season.
Indeed Lucas has made just six substitute appearances for PSG this term, despite scoring 19 goals in all competitions for the club last season.
“The most important thing is to play,” said Lucas. “Here I think it’s a new challenge to show my talent, my quality. It’s also a big club.
“The history of the club is very, very interesting. It’s a pleasure for me to play for Tottenham. Now I need to enjoy, to work hard and to show my quality.”
Neymar, however, speaking after PSG’s win over Rennes on Tuesday, lamented Lucas’ impending departure to Spurs.
“I’m sad, because he’s a good friend, he’s a quality player who was rarely used. I think it’s very unfair,” Neymar said.
“He is my brother in football. I wish him the best. Whatever the destination, I hope he will score a lot and he will return to the Brazilian national team.
“He’s not just a friend, he’s a very good guy. Here he could have been used a lot more but I’m not the owner of the team, not the owner of Paris.”
Lucas made more than 200 appearances in his five years at the Parc des Princes, helping PSG win four Ligue 1 titles in the process. — AFP