Rony Lopes signs contract extension until 2022 with struggling Monaco

Rony Lopes
The Portugal midfielder has been injured since early September during which time his team have slumped into the Ligue 1 bottom three

Portuguese midfielder Rony Lopes has signed an extended deal with Monaco, prolonging his stay until 2022.

The 22-year-old is a former Manchester City youth player, and became the club’s youngest ever scorer when he netted on his first-team debut in an FA Cup game at Watford in 2013 aged just 17.

It was one of only five appearances Lopes made for City, and he spent the first of three seasons on loan at Lille in 2014-15.

His time in Ligue 1 was more fruitful, scoring 12 times in 72 games en route to becoming a respected squad player in Les Dogues’ side.

He had been sold by City to Monaco in the summer of 2015, and the club loaned him back to the team from Flanders to continue his development.

"I'm working to quickly get back on the field and help my team-mates," said the Portuguese, who last month suffered a setback in his rehabilitation from a hamstring injury sustained during Portugal’s friendly match against Croatia in September.

Monaco began a hectic month with a 2-1 defeat at home to Montpellier on Saturday, the first of seven games in 22 days that includes a dead-rubber home game against Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League.

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That match rounds off a catastrophic European campaign for a team that reached the semi-final of this competition two years ago, with a 4-0 defeat at home to Club Brugge last week confirming their last-place finish in Group A.

And their domestic season has been little better, Saturday’s defeat leaving them marooned in 19th place in Ligue 1 and three points adrift of safety as Thierry Henry’s side look to adjust to life in the wake of the sacking of 2017 title-winning coach Leonardo Jardim.

The team from the principality will be hoping to be able to reincorporate Lopes into their side sooner rather than later, as they seek to mount a recovery to prevent them from falling into the second tier for the second time in eight years.