Imbula in for Porto
LISBON: FC Porto have splashed out 20 million euros to secure Marseille midfielder Giannelli Imbula on a five-year-deal, the Portuguese club announced on Wednesday. The deal makes the Belgian-born French player Porto’s second highest ever signing after Brazilian striker Hulk’s 22 million euro arrival in 2008. And it comes hours after the sale of Porto’s Colombian striker Jackson Martinez to Atletico Madrid for 35 million euros. Portuguese media suggest Imbula’s transfer could outstrip Hulk’s when add-ons to the players’s father-cum-agent and his previous club, Guingamp are taken into account. For Marseille, Imbula is the latest key player to quit the Velodrome since the south coast club’s fourth-place finish last season. He follows Dimitri Payet, who upped sticks to West Ham, Andre Ayew (Swansea), Jeremy Morel (Lyon) and Andre-Pierre Gignac (Tigres of Monterrey, Mexico).
Bayern sign Costa
BERLIN: Bayern Munich completed their first big transfer of the off-season on Wednesday by signing Brazil international Douglas Costa from Ukraine side Shakhtar Donetsk for a reported $33.3m. The fleet-footed winger or striker has signed a five-year deal with the German champions and will battle for a place on the left wing with Franck Ribery, who is struggling with a persistent ankle injury. Costa is the fourth most expensive signing in Bayern’s history after Javi Martinez (who cost 40m euros), Mario Goetze (37m) and Mario Gomez (35m). The 24-year-old, full name Douglas Costa de Souza, is on holiday now until the Bayern team is presented on July 11, although Pep Guardiola oversaw Bayern’s first training session to prepare for the new season on Wednesday.
Bolt to see doctor
BERLIN: Sprint star Usain Bolt is in Munich on Wednesday, seeking treatment from famous doctor Hans-Wilhelm Mueller-Wohlfahrt in a bid to cure his problematic pelvis injury before August’s world athletic championships. The reigning world and Olympic 100m and 200m champion has withdrawn from both the Diamond League meets this Saturday in Paris and on July 9 in Lausanne as he struggles for fitness. Bolt is suffering from a blocked sacroiliac joint in the pelvis which effects his left leg and the injury also forced him out of last week’s Jamaican championships. His goal now is to be fit for the world championships in Beijing from August 22-30 as he starts work with Mueller-Wohlfahrt, the team doctor to football’s World Cup winners Germany, who has treated Bolt throughout his career. “He’s the best doctor in the world and a great, great man,” Bolt has said of the German doctor, who has a string of famous patients. “He has treated my muscles, but he is more than a doctor to me,” added Bolt, who set the 100m and 200m world records in 2009 in Berlin.