Bahebeck, Maupay bolster Sainté attack
Saint-Etienne have announced the signatures of promising young forwards Jean-Christophe Bahebeck from Paris Saint-Germain (season-long loan) and Neal Maupay from OGC Nice (four years).
With Les Verts losing a host of attacking players including Mevlut Erding (Hannover 96) and Max-Alain Gradel (Bournemouth) over the summer, coach Christophe Galtier got a whole lot of what he was after on Monday as Maupay and Bahebeck joined Nolan Roux as new attacking elements in his squad.
Bahebeck, 22, who has represented France at various youth levels, has been loaned out for the last two seasons by Paris Saint-Germain - who will pay his salary and made sure to exclude an option to buy in the loan deal - and is looking forward to his time in Saint-Etienne.
Beahebck: 'I feel great'
"I'm very happy to join ASSE and to play for such a legendary club," said Bahebeck. "I think my preparation with PSG in the USA was really excellent and I feel great physically. The Stade Geoffroy-Guichard has an amazing atmosphere, one of the best in France. When you sign for Saint-Etienne, you know you will have a huge army of fans behind you."
Just hours after Bahebeck's arrival, the signature of 18-year-old Neal Maupay from OGC nice was announced, with Galtier explaining how the deal came about.
"The club's directors had identified Neal as a talented and promising young player," said Galtier of Maupay, 18, who put pen to paper on his four-year, €500,000 deal just hours after Bahebeck's arrival. "He's coming into a squad where there is competition for places. Even though he's young, he already has professional-level experience. He can score goals, get past his man and get in behind defences."
Unlike Bahebeck, Maupay has spent the vast majority of his career so far with Nice and sees the move to Sainté as a major step.
"ASSE is a club at which I can make a career for myself," said the 18-year-old who made 42 appearances (five goals) in his time at Nice. "I've played at Le Chaudron (the Stade Geoffroy-Guichard) with Nice and the fans were really amazing. I can't wait to put on the green shirt and take the field."
Bahebeck and Maupay could gettheir first chance to step out for their new club when Bordeaux come calling for their Week fixture on Saturday evening.