French champion Paris Saint-Germain signed midfielder Danilo Pereira from FC Porto on Monday on a season-long loan, a move likely to appease tensions between coach Thomas Tuchel and sporting director Leonardo.
PSG announced the deal with an option to buy on the transfer window’s deadline day after Leonardo criticized Tuchel last week for suggesting that the club had been weakened by failing to recruit new players.
Following their public spat, PSG also secured 20-year-old forward Moise Kean, who on Sunday signed on loan from Premier League club Everton until the end of June.
While Kean’s signing was not seen as crucial given PSG’s attacking riches, the recruitment of a defensive midfielder like Pereira was Tuchel’s priority. At 29 and 1.88 meters tall, he will bring both his experience and physical strength in midfield alongside smaller-built Marco Verratti and Idrissa Gueye.
Pereira won the 2016 European Championship and the 2019 Nations League with Portugal and has made 39 appearances with his national squad.
“It’s a new challenge for me, and to be part of Paris Saint-Germain fits my ambitions,” Pereira said. “Joining one of the biggest clubs in Europe and in the world is a huge moment in my career, and I hope to be able to bring a lot to Paris and its supporters.”
Tuchel, now in his third season at PSG, regretted the departures of many important players, including Thiago Silva, Thomas Meunier and Tanguy Kouassi. He said the defending French champions and Champions League runners-up might need to lower expectations this season.
Following its 1-0 loss to Bayern Munich in the Champions League in August, PSG endured a shaky start to the French league season with two losses. Tuchel’s team has since bounced back with four straight wins, moving up to fourth overall.
Once hailed as prodigy, Keane has struggled since leaving the Serie A in 2019. Trained at the Juventus academy, he turned professional in 2017 and won two Italian championships before moving to England. He scored only two goals in 31 Premier League with Everton.
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