BERLIN (Reuters) - Bayern Munich’s talented midfielder Gianluca Gaudino signed his first professional contract on Wednesday, binding him to the Bavarians until 2018.
The 18-year-old, who has made three appearances in the Bundesliga this season plus one each in the German Cup and the Champions League, has been at Bayern since 2004.
He is the son of former Germany midfielder Maurizio Gaudino.
“Gianluca is a home grown player which is good for Bayern,” said the club’s sports director Matthias Sammer in a statement. “It is also a positive signal for all of Bayern’s youth players that performances can earn you a pro contract.”
Bayern also extended the contract of reserve goalkeeper Tom Starke by one season to 2016 with the 33-year-old’s experience needed as a backup to Manuel Neuer.
Starke and fellow reserve keeper Pepe Reina are injured and have been out of action for months.
Reporting by Karolos Grohmann; Editing by Ken Ferris