Philipp Lienhart has joined Freiburg from Real Madrid.
Philipp Lienhart has joined Freiburg from Real Madrid.

Freiburg sign Austrian youngster Philipp Lienhart from Real Madrid

Freiburg have completed the signing of Austria Under-21 captain Philipp Lienhart on a loan deal from European champions Real Madrid until the end of the 2017/18 season.

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The Black Forest club also confirmed that they have secured an option to buy Lienhart at the end of the current loan deal.

A centre-back by trade, Lienhart was delighted to link up with Christian Streich's side. "I quickly realised that Freiburg is the right place to take the next step in my career," he said. "I'm looking forward to the challenges this season."

"Philipp is a young central defender with plenty of potential for development," said Klemens Hartenbach, Freiburg sporting director. "His concentrated style of play was already obvious in the Austrian youth set-up. It was also important for us to have the option to work with him beyond this year."

Lienhart, 20, featured regularly for Madrid’s reserve team, then under current first-team boss Zinedine Zidane, and made his competitive debut in the Copa del Rey in December 2015, replacing James Rodriguez in a 3-1 win against Cadiz. He also boasts 18 U21 caps for Austria, scoring once.

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