USMNT youngster Tim Weah transfers to Lille from Paris Saint-Germain

Tim Weah, shown here playing here for United States last month at the FIFA U-20 World Cup in Poland, signed a five-year contract with French club Lille. (Aitor Alcalde/Getty)
Tim Weah, shown here playing here for United States last month at the FIFA U-20 World Cup in Poland, signed a five-year contract with French club Lille. (Aitor Alcalde/Getty)

Tim Weah has left the French champs for Ligue 1’s runner-up.

On Saturday, Lille — which finished second in France’s top division behind big-spending Paris Saint-Germain last season — announced that it had acquired the 19-year-old United States forward and inked him to a five-year contract.

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The move comes on the heels of Weah’s strong performance for the U.S. under-20 squad earlier this month at the FIFA U-20 World Cup in Poland, where Weah scored two goals and added two assists in five games and helped his country defeat France en route to the quarterfinals.

Weah, the son of former Ballon d'Or winner George Weah, becomes the first American to play for the club. He split the 2018-19 season between PSG and Scottish champions Celtic. The native New Yorker scored twice in three appearances across all competitions for the former before moving to Scotland on loan in January.

He made 16 appearances for Celtic overall and scored four goals. At the senior international level, Weah scored once — in his debut — in eight caps, all of them in 2018 under interim USMNT coach Dave Sarachan. Weah has yet to be called in by current U.S. boss Gregg Berhalter, in part because of his lack of playing time, and wasn’t seriously considered for the 23-man squad currently taking part in the CONCACAF Gold Cup after making his desire to play with the U-20s known.

It was next to impossible for Weah to carve out minutes at PSG, with all-world forwards Neymar, Edinson Cavani and Kylian Mbappe ahead of him in the pecking order. Even at Celtic, Weah started just four games.

Getting on the field regularly won’t be easy at Lille either, not with proven strikers like Nicolas Pepe, Jonathan Bamba, Rafael Leao and Loic Remy already on the roster. Still, the length of the club’s commitment to him suggests that the young American will be given every chance to succeed.

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