Lyon sign Dutch winger Memphis from Manchester United

Reuters , Friday 20 Jan 2017

Manchester United's Memphis Depay applauds, during the English Premier League soccer match between West Bromwich Albion and Manchester United, at the Hawthorns in West Bromwich, England. Depay has completed his move from Manchester United to Lyon (Photo: AP)

Olympique Lyonnais have signed Dutch winger Memphis Depay from Manchester United on a four and a half year contract, the French Ligue 1 club said on Friday.

Lyon paid 16 million euros ($17 million) for the 22-year-old Netherlands international.

Memphis scored seven goals in 53 appearances for United after moving from PSV Eindhoven for 25 million pounds ($30 million) in May, 2015 but he has played only eight minutes since the end of October.

"He was a fantastic professional," United manager Jose Mourinho told a news conference. "If someone thinks it didn't work because he wasn't a great professional, that's totally wrong."

Memphis was the leading scorer in the Dutch top flight in 2014-15 and was signed by former United manager Louis van Gaal.

But under Mourinho he has fallen down the pecking order among the club's wide players, behind the likes of Henrikh Mkhitaryan, Juan Mata, Anthony Martial and Jesse Lingard.

"When Mr Van Gaal bought him, he did well," Mourinho said, adding that United had inserted a buy-back clause into the deal with Lyon.

"He didn't succeed in these 18 months, but he's very young. It's important for the club to keep control of this talent and we wish that he plays very well at Lyon. Why not come back here, as everybody likes him."

Lyon are fourth in French Ligue 1, 11 points behind leaders Monaco.

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