Every Sunday morning, Foot Mercato presents a young talent to follow very closely. Today, we go to the Netherlands to meet Mehdi Lehaire.
Born in 2000, this offensive midfielder, who went through the LOSC, started to make his place on the side of FC Utrecht. Edouard Duplan, Sébastien Haller, Jean-Christophe Bahebeck, Nicolas Gavory … FC Utrecht likes to capitalize on talents trained in France when it is time to go shopping for young players. This summer, the Dutch club has welcomed a young hope shaped in France: Mehdi Lehaire. Born in 2000, this offensive midfielder started from with Lille, as he told the microphone of Foot Mercato. “When I was young I was playing futsal with a club in my city, then I went to LOSC at 7, I stayed 7 years, until I was 14,” he said. But it is in Belgium that the adventure really starts for him.
Then I went to the try outs fo the Jean-Marc Guillou Academy in Belgium.
“Then I went to the try outs fo the Jean-Marc Guillou Academy in Belgium. It went very well. I signed for 5 years. They had a partnership with Lierse in D1. From the age of 16, the best members of the academy could join Lierse reserve team. That’s what happened to me, “he said. At just 17, Mehdi Lehaire even makes his first steps pro, taking a seat on the bench, and then having his chance on the field. “I played against the Standard (in May 2017) and Kortrijk (in April 2018) in play-offs and made some benches against Mouscron, OHL,” he recalled. Unfortunately, the Belgian adventure stops there.
I did a three-day internship in the Netherlands
“Lierse had been downgraded administratively, so I found myself free. I could stay in Belgium, where Zulte-Waregem was interested, go to Italy or go to Utrecht. I did a three-day internship in the Netherlands. It went very well. And the project interested me. So I opted for Utrecht, “he said. It is a new adventure wich is going good so far . ” Everything is fine. I play with the team U23 (5 appearances), which evolves in Dutch D2, against Twente, Sparta Rotterdam, etc. We play against men, we defend a lot, but that’s fine. I did some training and friendly matches with the pros (he even scored against AZ at the end of October, 2-0). As I was born in 2000, I can also serve the U19 (4 games, 1 goal). The adaptation is going well, “he summarized.
Enough to create beautiful and legitimate ambitions. “I signed two years plus an optional. The goal is to join as fast as possible the first team, to start in Eredivisie as soon as possible. The exchanges with the pro staff are going well. If I continue to work properly, I could start sooner than expected. There is Urby Emanuelson or Oussama Tannane in the first team. There is also Nicolas Gavory who arrived this summer from Clermont, it’s nice for the adaptation. In the short term, I want to join the first team as soon as possible, “he said, aiming for a” medium / long-term European championship “and” why not Ligue 1 “.
Also former players from our Soccer Academy in Belgium are :