Lyle Foster Bafana

Lyle Foster of South Africa battles with William Saliba of France earlier this year. Photo: BackpagePix

REVEALED: How much Westerlo spent to keep Bafana’s Lyle Foster!

A record transfer fee was paid by Belgian second division champions Westerlo to retain the services of Bafana Bafana striker Lyle Foster.

Lyle Foster Bafana

Lyle Foster of South Africa battles with William Saliba of France earlier this year. Photo: BackpagePix

Foster, who came through the South Africa youth ranks before becoming part of the senior Bafana setup from 2019, is set to extend his stay with Westerlo after it was confirmed that his loan deal will become a permanent one.

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On 13 August 2020, Foster became the newest member of Vitória de Guimarães, while last year he joined Westerlo on a season long loan until 30 June 2022.

The 21-year-old featured for Pirates between 2017 and 2019, and was once list among English newspaper The Guardian‘s top 60 most promising young players in the world.

His permanent transfer to newly-crowned Belgian second division champions Westerlo is reported to be around R17 million, while also being entitled to a percentage of any future sell-on fee.

“Vitória Sport Clube Futebol, SAD informs that it has reached an agreement with KVC Westerlo, from Belgium, for the transfer of the player Lyle Foster, for the amount of €1 000 000 with Vitória keeping 15% of the surplus-value of a future sale,” read the statement from the Portuguese outfit.

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It’s now been confirmed to SABC Sport that the deal is a four-year contract for a record fee.

“I’m delighted for Lyle that he has finally been able to put pen to paper on a new permanent deal at Westerlo. Lyle enjoyed his loan spell at the club and when the team gained promotion to the Belgian topflight the club made it clear that they wanted Lyle to remain with them on a permanent deal, which has finally come to fruition after extended negotiations between the respective parties,” his agent, Glyn Binkin of Football First, told SABC Sport.

“Lyle enjoyed a successful loan spell at the club and felt at home in Westerlo so despite interest from a number of other topflight Belgian clubs, when Westerlo made their intentions clear for him to remain at the club on a permanent basis, he immediately told us that Westerlo would be his number one priority. We are thus delighted and thank the President and management for what is a record transfer for the club and Lyle has now signed a 4-year deal effective 01 July 2022.”

Foster scored five goals and provided four assists in 26 appearances across all competitions for Westerlo this season.

Foster was part of the Bafana squad that played friendlies against Guinea earlier this year

Foster recently said he felt it would be of great benefit to Bafana Bafana if there were more players challenging themselves in competitions overseas.

“I definitely hope the appetite is there for them to play in Europe because the gap is so huge between our league and the leagues in Europe,” Foster said.

“The competitiveness and the way they are being run in terms of professionalism is different. I hope we can export more players, and I believe that will strengthen the national team when we compete at higher level tournaments and qualifiers.

“We will have the experience of facing people from different countries and different internationals rather than always playing in the PSL against one another for five years.

“Playing in Europe does make your skin tougher and you are more ready for the challenges you are going to face.”

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