Brighton sign Carlos Baleba from Lille
Brighton and Hove Albion have completed the acquisition of 19-year-old Carlos Baleba from French side Lille. The youngster has committed his future to the Seagulls until June 2028.
Roberto De Zerbi, the men’s first-team head coach, was thrilled with the addition, expressing his high hopes for the Cameroonian. "Carlos is a very good player. He’s very young but a specific player for our style. He will be the future of the club,” De Zerbi said.
Brighton’s technical director, David Weir, mirrored this excitement, acknowledging the challenges but also expressing the club's commitment to Baleba's integration.
“We are really happy to be able to bring Carlos to the club," Weir commented.
“He’s 19 and will need some time to get used to his new surroundings, our culture, and the language; he will get all the support he needs to make that transition and we’re looking forward to seeing him in action.”
Baleba's journey to the Premier League started in his homeland of Cameroon, where he honed his skills in academy football.
Recognizing his potential, Lille brought him on board in January 2022. After showcasing his prowess in 13 matches for Lille's B team, Baleba was given the nod for the first-team action.
He made an impressive debut last September, coming off the bench to help seal a 1-0 victory against Lens.
Building on that momentum, he made his starting debut in Ligue 1 against Stade Brestois, which ended in a goalless draw.
Over the course of the 2022/23 season, Baleba solidified his spot with 19 league appearances, and he has already featured twice this season.