The Whitecaps first brought Davies into their residency program when he was 15 years old. (Canadian Press)

The Whitecaps first brought Davies into their residency program when he was 15 years old. (Canadian Press)

Deal to transfer Whitecaps soccer phenom Alphonso Davies not finalized

Reports suggest the 17-year-old Vancouver midfielder is headed to German powerhouse Bayern Munich

Rumours continue to swirl about a deal that would send the teenage star of the Vancouver Whitecaps to an elite European soccer club, but teammates say Alphonso Davies isn’t letting success go to his head.

Recent reports suggest the 17-year-old midfielder is headed to German powerhouse Bayern Munich for a potential MLS record transfer fee.

Whitecaps coach Carl Robinson said Monday that an agreement had not yet been finalized.

“He’s still our player at this present moment,” he said after training.

Vancouver midfielder Russell Teibert said he couldn’t be happier for Davies, who he described as a great friend and teammate, and an outstanding person.

“It’s something like a fairy tale, to be honest, because every time he gets an opportunity, he steps up to the plate and he nails it and he hits out of the park,” he said. “And that’s tough to say for another 17-year-old in this country let alone the world.”

Known for his blistering speed and uncanny ability to maintain control of the ball, Davies has been a star for the Whitecaps this season, posting three goals and eight assists in 20 games. He’s also scheduled to play in the MLS all-star game next month.

READ MORE: Vancouver Whitecaps hope teen sensation brings relief to early season struggles

But the teen hasn’t let either success on the field or reports about his future swell his ego, Teibert said.

“He takes everything in stride and he’s so modest about who he is and what’s happening,” he said. ”Any other person or kid would maybe act a different type of way. But he’s just the same Alphonso Davies and that speaks volumes to his character.”

Davies was back at Whitecaps training on Monday, working on passing and dribbling drills on the sidelines while most of his teammates scrimmaged.

He missed training with his team last Friday and wasn’t present for the Whitecaps’ 2-0 loss in Seattle on Saturday, which dropped Vancouver to ninth place in the MLS Western Conference.

Robinson admitted that the team has missed having Davies on the field.

“He’s arguably been our best player this year,” he said. ”It’s difficult because he’s a 17-year-old and there’s a lot of expectation and pressure on him. But he’s played with freedom and enjoyment.”

Losing Davies would be a blow for the Whitecaps, who have struggled recently, losing five of their last six matches.

Other members of the team need to up their game, Teibert said.

“You can’t replace a kid like that. He’s a wonder kid. But we need to fill in for him,” he said. ”We need guys all around the field. We don’t just need one person to fill in, we need 11 guys. We need leaders, we need people to step up to the plate.”

Over the past two months, Davies has shown “rapid improvement,” a result of spending more than two years developing with the team, Robinson said.

READ MORE: Canada to host 2026 World Cup, but not B.C.

The Whitecaps brought Davies into their residency program when he was 15. He had been living with his family in Edmonton, where they had settled after immigrating from a refugee camp in Ghana. Davies was born in the camp after his parents fled the Liberian civil war.

He received his Canadian citizenship in July 2017 and was called up to play on the men’s national team soon after.

At the 2017 CONCACAF Gold Cup, Davies became the youngest player to ever score for team Canada and the youngest goalscorer in the tournament’s history. He took home the Gold Boot and Best Young Player honours from the event.

“The boy’s got potential. We know that. He’s developed into a wonderful player,” Robinson said.

Playing in Europe would give Davies an opportunity to compete with world-class players and get “fantastic coaching,” he added.

Whitecaps defender Marcel de Jong played in both the Netherlands and Germany, and said his young teammate is sure to face some culture shock overseas.

“Soccer is a religion. Six, seven, eight, nine newspapers every day writing about you, criticizing you after every game,” de Jong said. “So you have to be mentally prepared for that. But he’s a good boy …. he’s got a good head on his shoulders so he’ll be fine.”

Heading to Europe will be a natural progression for Davies, Robinson said, but that doesn’t mean it won’t be hard for those he leaves behind.

“Will I be sad? 100 per cent. He’s like one of my own,” the coach said.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

This woman is one of two people the Agassiz RCMP are asking for assistance in identifying after a string of alleged thefts in Popkum. (Agassiz RCMP)
Agassiz RCMP ask for help to identify suspects in Popkum thefts

Images of the two suspects were captured on surveillance footage between Jan. 10 and 16

Only students who are attending in-person classes will be asked to take the Foundation Skills Assessment this year in the Fraser Cascade School District. (Unsplash)
Foundation Skills Assessment only for in-person learners: SD78

The provincial assessment will take place between Feb. 15 and March 12 for grades 4 and 7

Abbotsford’s Tradex has been transformed into a volleyball and basketball facility with Open Court. (Instagram photo)
Abbotsford’s Tradex transforms into sports facility

Open Court program hosting volleyball and basketball teams for practices and possibly games

Map of COVID-19 cases for Jan. 10 to 16 by local health area. (BCCDC)
Agassiz, Harrison COVID-19 cases heading back towards weekly normal

The area saw 10 new cases between Jan. 10 and 16, after a one week high of 19

Businesses continue to struggle under COVID-19 restrictions as the pandemic reaches the one-year mark. (B.C. government)
Another 564 COVID-19 cases, mass vaccine plan coming Friday

15 more deaths, community cluster declared in Williams Lake

Premier John Horgan leaves the podium following his first press conference of the year as he comments on various questions from the media in the Press Gallery at B.C. Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Monday, January 13, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Interprovincial travel restrictions a no-go, Horgan says after reviewing legal options

The B.C. NDP government sought legal advice as concerns of travel continue

Gem Lake Top, at Big White Ski Resort, seen at Jan. 8. (Big White Ski Resort)
Big White cancels $7.3M in lift tickets, accommodations due to COVID-19 orders

Since November, the ski resort has been forced to make several changes

Jan. 21 marks the 21st day of the 21st year of the 21st century, according to some. (Black Press Media file photo)
The 21st day of the 21st year of the 21st century is upon us

Milestone won’t be back for another 100 years

Darlene Curylo scratched a $3M ticket, BCLC’s largest ever scratch and win prize. (BCLC)
Kelowna woman in shock after winning BCLC’s largest-ever instant-ticket prize

Darlene Curylo couldn’t believe her eyes when she saw the amount of money she’d won from a scratch ticket

While each person has different reasons for becoming homeless, a UBCO study shows they learn through their interactions with different services to perform ‘as homeless’ based on the expectations of service providers. (Contributed)
Kelowna homeless forced to ‘perform’ for resources, says UBCO study

One participant in the study said ‘It is about looking homeless, but not too homeless’

Gov. Gen. Julie Payette takes the royal salute from the Guard of Honour as she makes her way deliver the the throne speech, Wednesday, September 23, 2020 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Fred Chartrand
Gov. Gen. Julie Payette resigns, apologizes for ‘tensions’ at Rideau Hall

Payette, who is the Queen’s representative in Canada, has been the governor general since 2017

Grounded WestJet Boeing 737 Max aircraft are shown at the airline’s facilities in Calgary, Alta., Tuesday, May 7, 2019. WestJet will operate the first commercial Boeing 737 Max flight in Canada today since the aircraft was grounded in 2019 following two deadly crashes. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Passengers unfazed as WestJet returns Boeing 737 Max to service on Vancouver flight

After a lengthy review process, Transport Canada cleared the plane to return to Canadian airspace

The top part of the fossil burrow, seen from the side, with feathery lines from the disturbance of the soil – thought to be caused by the worm pulling prey into the burrow. (Paleoenvironntal Sediment Laboratory/National Taiwan University)
PHOTOS: SFU researchers find evidence of ‘giant’ predatory worms on ocean floor

Fossils found the prove the existence of an ancient Taiwanese worm as long as two metres

Most Read