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First Team

Lerma signs in club record deal


AFC Bournemouth AFC Bournemouth

AFC Bournemouth have completed the signing of Colombia international Jefferson Lerma for a club record fee, subject to international clearance.

The 23-year-old central midfielder arrives from Levante and has put pen to paper on a five-year deal.

Lerma began his career with Atletico Huila, in his homeland, and rose through their ranks to become a first team regular.

In August 2015 he joined Levante, initially on loan before the switch was made permanent a year later, and made 93 appearances for Granotas in all competitions, scoring three goals.

Making his senior international debut in November 2017, Lerma has won nine caps to date and represented his nation at the 2016 Olympic Games and 2018 World Cup.

“I’m so happy to be an AFC Bournemouth player,” said Lerma.

“The transfer has been very long because it took a while for the clubs to reach an agreement, but the most important thing is that I am here now and everyone got what they wanted in the end.

“I have always loved the Premier League style of football and am very happy to have this opportunity.

“I am looking forward to success and doing important things for this club.”

AFC Bournemouth manager, Eddie Howe, said: “It’s no secret that Jefferson has been someone we have chased for a while this summer.

“It’s been a complicated deal but I am certain it will be worth all the hard work that people have put in to make this happen.

“Jefferson is an extremely talented player and a very good athlete who will bring a different type of play to our midfield.

“He has a lot of qualities that will be suited to the Premier League and I’m really looking forward to working with him.”

AFC Bournemouth chief executive, Neill Blake, said: “I’m delighted that we have finally completed the signing of Jefferson.

“It hasn’t been easy and we have had to be patient but we have got our man and it is a huge statement for this club.

“A new record transfer speaks volumes of the ambition of our owners to continue progressing the club and competing in the Premier League.

“Jefferson will add competition to an already-talented midfield and these are exciting times for AFC Bournemouth.”

The most important thing is that I am here now - everyone got what they wanted in the end.

Jefferson Lerma
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The reveal: Lerma signs

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