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Bayern Munich finalizes transfer for Whitecaps star midfielder Alphonso Davies

Alphonso Davies was born in a refugee camp in Ghana after his parents fled the Liberian civil war, and the family later emigrated to Canada, settling in Edmonton.
Alphonso Davies was born in a refugee camp in Ghana after his parents fled the Liberian civil war, and the family later emigrated to Canada, settling in Edmonton. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

Reports that Vancouver Whitecaps star Alphonso Davies has finalized a transfer to a German soccer giant are bittersweet for his current coach.

Multiple media reports say the 17-year-old Canadian international midfielder is heading to Bayern Munich.

Whitecaps head coach Carl Robinson said it would be wrong for the club to stop the rising star — who was not at training on Tuesday — from developing his career and talents abroad.

“Did we want to sell him? No. Because he’s a big success on the field,” Robinson said after training.

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“But you can’t be selfish at this moment because we’ve got a wonderful talent on our hands for me at the club level and even at the international level.”

TSN has reported transfer fees could reach as high as US$20 million with bonuses, an amount that would shatter the record price fetched by an MLS player.

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The current record was set in 2008, when Spanish club Villarreal spent $10 million to acquire then-18-year-old striker Jozy Altidore from the New York Red Bulls.

Davies has eight assists and three goals in 20 games with the Whitecaps this season, his third with the team. He’s also scheduled to play in the MLS all-star game next month.

READ MORE: Edmonton teen Alphonso Davies joins MLS all-star team

Watch below: Watch: In June 2018, Canadian soccer star Alphonso Davies told FIFA World Congress about his dream ahead of 2026 World Cup vote.

Canadian soccer star Alphonso Davies tells FIFA World Congress of his dream ahead of 2026 World Cup vote
Canadian soccer star Alphonso Davies tells FIFA World Congress of his dream ahead of 2026 World Cup vote

“He’s ready to go and develop,” Robinson said. “He’s at this age at the moment, I call him a sponge — he’s willing to take so much information on board. And you’ve got to let him do that.”

Davies joined the Whitecaps residency program in 2015. He was scouted from Edmonton, where his family settled after emigrating to Canada from a refugee camp in Ghana. Davies was born in the refugee camp in 2000, after his parents fled the Liberian civil war.

Watch below: On March 25, 2016, Julia Wong profiled teenaged Edmonton soccer player Alphonso Davies, At the time, he had been selected for Canada’s U-20 soccer team, but his story began in war-torn Liberia.

From civil war in Liberia to Canada’s U-20 soccer team
From civil war in Liberia to Canada’s U-20 soccer team

Many coaches and staff members have contributed to Davies’ development, Robinson said.

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“It’s not easy to find players at the best of times but to find a player, coach a player, develop a player and teach a player and then sell a player at that value that we think he’s going to go for is an incredible feat,” he said.

“And I’m sure every MLS team will be envious and want to find the next Alphonso Davies.”

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READ MORE: Teen soccer star from Edmonton impresses in history making debut for Team Canada

The coach said he knows Davies will be supported in every aspect of his life and surrounded by the top talent in the world. But that doesn’t mean that watching him go will be easy.

“I’m happy. I’m disappointed because I’m losing one of my boys,” Robinson said. “But it’s the right thing to do.”

View photos of Alphonso Davies in the gallery below

Vancouver Whitecaps 15-year-old Alphonso Davies (67) breaks away from Toronto FC's Eriq Zavaleta during first half Canadian Cup action in Toronto on Tuesday June 21, 2016. The Vancouver Whitecaps are confident they can dig themselves out of another hole.The Whitecaps face Toronto FC on Wednesday night at BC Place with the Voyageurs Cup on the line.
Vancouver Whitecaps 15-year-old Alphonso Davies (67) breaks away from Toronto FC's Eriq Zavaleta during first half Canadian Cup action in Toronto on Tuesday June 21, 2016. The Vancouver Whitecaps are confident they can dig themselves out of another hole.The Whitecaps face Toronto FC on Wednesday night at BC Place with the Voyageurs Cup on the line. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young
Alphonso Davies, 15, started playing soccer at a young age.
Alphonso Davies, 15, started playing soccer at a young age. Nathan Gross/Global News
Canada's Alphonso Davies (12) celebrates his goal against Costa Rica in the first half of a CONCACAF Gold Cup soccer match in Houston, Tuesday, July 11, 2017.
Canada's Alphonso Davies (12) celebrates his goal against Costa Rica in the first half of a CONCACAF Gold Cup soccer match in Houston, Tuesday, July 11, 2017. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)
Vancouver Whitecaps' Alphonso Davies, left, and Nicolas Mezquida celebrate Davies' goal against the Montreal Impact during first half semifinal Canadian Championship soccer action in Vancouver, B.C., on Tuesday May 23, 2017.
Vancouver Whitecaps' Alphonso Davies, left, and Nicolas Mezquida celebrate Davies' goal against the Montreal Impact during first half semifinal Canadian Championship soccer action in Vancouver, B.C., on Tuesday May 23, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Canada's Alphonso Davies stretches during a practice Monday, June 12, 2017 in Montreal. Vancouver Whitecaps rising star Davies headlines a young Canadian squad for the 2017 CONCACAF Gold Cup.
Canada's Alphonso Davies stretches during a practice Monday, June 12, 2017 in Montreal. Vancouver Whitecaps rising star Davies headlines a young Canadian squad for the 2017 CONCACAF Gold Cup. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
Canada's Alphonso Davies clears the ball away from Curacao's Gevaro Nepomuceno during second half of a friendly match, in Montreal on Tuesday, June 13, 2017.
Canada's Alphonso Davies clears the ball away from Curacao's Gevaro Nepomuceno during second half of a friendly match, in Montreal on Tuesday, June 13, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
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File photo. BC Place and local pus are gearing up for fans to sweep into the city for game 1 of the MLS Western Conference Semifinals on Sunday.
File photo. BC Place and local pus are gearing up for fans to sweep into the city for game 1 of the MLS Western Conference Semifinals on Sunday. Darryl Dyck / The Canadian Press
Like others in MLS, Toronto FC has taken notice of Vancouver Whitecaps teenager Alphonso Davies. Davies celebrates his goal during first half CONCACAF Champions League quarter-final soccer action against the New York Red Bulls, in Vancouver in a March 2, 2017, file photo.
Like others in MLS, Toronto FC has taken notice of Vancouver Whitecaps teenager Alphonso Davies. Davies celebrates his goal during first half CONCACAF Champions League quarter-final soccer action against the New York Red Bulls, in Vancouver in a March 2, 2017, file photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Philadelphia Union's Fabian Herbers, back, is pushed off the ball by Vancouver Whitecaps' Matias Laba (15) as Alphonso Davies (67) watches during the first half of an MLS soccer game in Vancouver, B.C., on Sunday March 5, 2017. It's very early in the season but the Vancouver Whitecaps have already made strides to tighten up their defensive play.
Philadelphia Union's Fabian Herbers, back, is pushed off the ball by Vancouver Whitecaps' Matias Laba (15) as Alphonso Davies (67) watches during the first half of an MLS soccer game in Vancouver, B.C., on Sunday March 5, 2017. It's very early in the season but the Vancouver Whitecaps have already made strides to tighten up their defensive play. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Alphonso Davies of Canada speaks at the FIFA congress on the eve of the opener of the 2018 soccer World Cup in Moscow, Russia, Wednesday, June 13, 2018. The congress in Moscow is set to choose the host or hosts for the 2026 World Cup.
Alphonso Davies of Canada speaks at the FIFA congress on the eve of the opener of the 2018 soccer World Cup in Moscow, Russia, Wednesday, June 13, 2018. The congress in Moscow is set to choose the host or hosts for the 2026 World Cup. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko)
Philadelphia Union's Fabinho, right, shoves Vancouver Whitecaps' Alphonso Davies off the ball during the second half of an MLS soccer game in Vancouver, B.C., on Sunday March 5, 2017. Liberian-born Edmonton-raised midfielder Davies has been one of the bright spots for the Vancouver Whitecaps early in the Major Soccer League season.
Philadelphia Union's Fabinho, right, shoves Vancouver Whitecaps' Alphonso Davies off the ball during the second half of an MLS soccer game in Vancouver, B.C., on Sunday March 5, 2017. Liberian-born Edmonton-raised midfielder Davies has been one of the bright spots for the Vancouver Whitecaps early in the Major Soccer League season. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
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Alphonso Davies was born in a refugee camp in Ghana after his parents fled the Liberian civil war, and the family later emigrated to Canada, settling in Edmonton.
Alphonso Davies was born in a refugee camp in Ghana after his parents fled the Liberian civil war, and the family later emigrated to Canada, settling in Edmonton. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Vancouver Whitecaps' Fredy Montero, front left, Tim Parker, back left, and Alphonso Davies celebrate Montero's goal against the New York Red Bulls during second half CONCACAF Champions League quarter-final soccer action in Vancouver, B.C., on Thursday, March 2, 2017.
Vancouver Whitecaps' Fredy Montero, front left, Tim Parker, back left, and Alphonso Davies celebrate Montero's goal against the New York Red Bulls during second half CONCACAF Champions League quarter-final soccer action in Vancouver, B.C., on Thursday, March 2, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck