Six Brazilian Wonder kids to Watch in 2020
In today’s world, footballers have an opportunity to showcase their skills right from a young age. Take Barcelona’s Ansu Fati. At seventeen years, he’s the youngest player to ever score a goal in the Champions League.
There are plenty more wonder kids in the world, more so in Brazil. And looking forward to 2020, here are six under 21 footballers from Brazil to watch.
He could have signed for Barcelona or stayed in Brazil for a little longer, but Rodrygo didn’t hesitate to join Real Madrid when the chance came knocking. Now he wants to stay at the Bernabeu for the rest of his career.
But does the 18-year-old have the talent to stay at Real Madrid? He’s already being branded as the next Neymar and not just after he made his senior debut. Globo Esporte published an article calling Rodrygo the next Neymar back in 2014.
But for him to achieve Neymar’s career numbers, he’ll have to keep scoring goals at Real Madrid. Luckily, he’s gradually proving his worth. He’s scored four goals in the ongoing Champions League Competition and has two more in La Liga after ten matches.
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Rodrygo’s teammate Vinicius Junior has also been compared to Neymar in the past and deservedly so. He’s fast; he has an excellent vision for the ball and can rise to the occasion when he’s most needed. What’s more, Junior is more athletic than Neymar, a trait that helps him power off opponents in difficult situations.
Junior’s impressive talent at Madrid is also earning him respect from the club and could end up staying at the Spanish capital longer than Rodrygo. He hasn’t scored many goals so far, but his passes, assists, and resilience on the field could steer his career to great heights.
More importantly, Junior isn’t living under anyone’s shadow in Madrid. If he can work on his skills, he can successfully become one of the best Brazilians to play in La Liga.
Gremio’s Matheus Henrique has been playing so well that Barcelona’s Gerard Pique hopes to see him in Europe soon. Pique shared his excitement for Matheus by sharing a clip of the Brazilian defensive midfielder on Instagram last May.
Matheus later shared the clip, but he would take it down for unknown reasons. It wouldn’t be surprising if Gremio ordered him to remove it, however. In the past, the club has held indoor training sessions to avoid distractions from European agents scouting Henrique.
In 2020, however, Gremio might not be able to protect Henrique from the swath of European clubs interested in him. The defensive midfielder is regularly compared to Arthur. And with pique showing support for him, the youngster could end in Barcelona by the summer.
If Arsenal’s Gabriel Martinelli continues his present form into 2020, he could easily become Brazil’s under-21 player of the year. He seldom gets playtime at Arsenal, and yet he’s one of the club’s top scorers with nearly half of the football season is yet to be played.
He’s athletic, a hard worker, fast and clinical at converting chances. He’s also pretty consistent, right from the time he debuted for Ituano at 16 years. Martinelli’s four goals in two matches at the Carabao Cup, three goals at the Europa League, and a crucial Premier League goal also say a lot about his potential.
English pundits believe Martinelli will play an essential role in powering Arsenal to the top of the world in the next several years. Of course, many Brazilians hope the best for the youngster. But don’t back him to win Brazil’s player of the year accolade yet.
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Arsenal, Ajax, and Barcelona all want to sign Sao Paulo’s forward despite the 19-year-old’s limited playtime at his club. He also has a contract running to 2023, meaning Sao Paulo doesn’t have any pressure to sell the youngster.
But that hasn’t stopped Arsenal from admitting publicly they want Anthony at the Emirates. Barcelona are also interested at the youngster after the club’s scouts watched Anthony play in Sao Paulo for a while.
With Ajax also interested, Anthony will be keen to put up numbers that can get him an irresistible deal in Europe. So far, the youngster has struggled to score goals, only netting twice in the league after 23 games this season. But at 19 years, he has all the time in the world to work on his skills and attract the attention of the world’s best teams.
After his impressive run at Atletico Mineiro, Barcelona and Real Betis co-signed a deal to bring Emerson to Lal Liga in January 2018. Betis would have the player until 2021, after which Barcelona can choose to sign him for €6 million.
Two goals and four assist in 15 matches after; Emerson has his eyes on joining Barcelona. He’s previously told reporters he has a dream to play with Lionel Messi. And his dream could come true if he keeps performing at the top level and if Messi will still be playing at Barca in two years.
There’s plenty of talent in Brazil, and most of the youngsters want to prove their worth in Europe. Rodrygo, Vinicius Junior, Martinelli, and Emerson are having incredible seasons at their respective clubs.
But Anthony and Henrique will have to convince European clubs they are worth signing in 2020 before they leave for Europe. Nevertheless, it will be interesting to see what becomes of top Brazilian wonder kids in the next twelve months.