West Ham confirm £26m Luis Guilherme as first Julen Lopetegui signing

Brazilian teenager Luis Guilherme has been confirmed as the first signing of the Julen Lopetegui era at West Ham.

The Hammers will pay an initial £20million plus a potential £6m in add-ons for the winger, who underwent a medical on Tuesday and joins from Palmeiras.

Guilherme, who is considered among the best young talents in Brazil, has agreed a five-year contract with the option of a further year, joining officially on Friday when the summer transfer window opens.

He received late interest from the Saudi Pro League but West Ham moved quickly to wrap up a deal for him, subject to a work permit being issued and international clearance.

“I’m very happy to be signing with West Ham United, a Club that trusted in my work,” said Guilherme. “I also want to thank everyone at West Ham, particularly Tim [Steidten] and his team who came to Brazil, and not only talked with me, but also with my family.

“They presented the project, and both my family and I liked it. So, I'm very happy to be signing with this Club and hope to contribute as much as possible. If things go well, we have a beautiful journey ahead.

“The Head Coach and I already had a conversation. He showed me his project and I believe I’ll learn a lot from him. He’s coached at the national level in Spain and managed big clubs.

“The Premier League is the best league in the world. I believe I’ll improve a lot here with the entire staff at West Ham, which is crucial for my development.

“Growing up, whenever I had the chance, I watched English football. Seeing how it is and now being able to play here is an incredible feeling.

“Since I was eleven, I had this dream, and now it’s becoming a reality. I’m very happy about it and grateful to West Ham. Let’s go for it!”

The 18-year-old’s arrival is expected to kick-start a summer spending spree at West Ham, with their technical director Tim Steidten set to lead a significant overhaul of the first-team squad.

The Hammers are targeting as many as six signings. A centre-forward, right-back and at least one new centre-back are understood to be top of their priorities.

Steidten has been in Brazil for talks over several deals. West Ham were in discussions over a move for Flamengo centre-back Fabricio Bruno but a £15m deal fell through.

West Ham will also be forced to target homegrown talent or else risk falling foul of Premier League regulations, which limit clubs to a maximum of 17 non-qualified players in their squads.