Who is Harold Moukoudi? Middlesbrough's new signing who was linked with Leeds, Stoke and Derby
Middlesbrough have completed the signing of Saint-Etienne defender Harold Moukoudi on loan until the end of the season – but who is he?
We take a closer look at the 22-year-old centre-back.
What’s his background?
Moukoudi was born in France and played for the country’s national team up until under-20 level.
The centre-back has since elected to represent Cameroon due to his family background.
Moukoudi came through the ranks at French second-tier club Le Havre and made his senior debut in October 2016.
The centre-back’s performances prompted Saint-Etienne to offer the youngster a five-year deal in April, yet Moukoudi has made just 11 Ligue 1 appearances this season.
Boro’s Championship rivals Leeds, Stoke and Derby were also linked with the centre-back, yet the Teessiders clinched the deal.
What are his strengths?
At 6’3, Moukoudi offers an obvious aerial threat and physical presence in defence.
The defender is also capable of stepping out from the back and passing the ball into midfield.
However, after starting the season in Saint-Etienne’s starting XI, Moukoudi has dropped out of the side in recent weeks, hence the reason he’s available on loan.
What’s been said about him?
Boro boss Jonathan Woodgate was full of praise for the defender after the signing was confirmed on Friday evening.
“We’re delighted to bring Harold in to the club. He’s a player we’ve been keeping an eye on and it’s a real coup that we’ve been able to bring him here,” Woodgate told Boro’s official website.
“He’s a unit of a defender, a real big, strong lad, and he’s a quality player. He’s still young, but he has plenty of experience, having played in the top division in France, in the Europa League, and also for Cameroon.
"He’ll be a very important addition to our squad and will really increase the competition we have for places."
When can he make his Boro debut?
Moukoudi won’t be able to play against Blackburn this weekend as the signing wasn’t completed before Friday’s 12pm cut-off point.
The defender could make his debut when Boro travel to Brentford next weekend.