According to Mundodeportivo, it was reported that Arsenal are now among numerous clubs interested in highly rated Argentine attacking midfielder/winger Thiago Almada.
The 19-year-old Thiago Almada is an Argentine footballer who currently plays for Vélez Sarsfield of the Argentine Primera División.
In 2018, he was included in The Guardian’s “Next Generation”.
Thiago Almada really had a very unpleasant early years, as he struggled with focusing on football with petty work by selling fruits and vegetables for one of his neighbours. Matches between friends would be broken up by gunshots from across the neighbourhood.
“I spent my childhood in the neighbourhood. I learned good and bad things,” he told TyC Sports. “There were people who smoked next to me and I saw people walking with a gun in their hands.”
In a further interview with Clarin, he added: “In the neighbourhood there are a lot who chose the bad road. It’s one way or the other, and I had to choose.”
Eduardo Hernandez who also coach Carlos Tevez at local club Santa Clara, telling Clarin: “Almada is much more technical. Carlitos always stood out for his delivery and his desire. But with the ball, Thiago is better. In Fuerte Apache there are many kids with technique and ability. Many remain on the streets for social reasons.”
At five years of age, Almada’s talent was already obvious and he was immediately tapped by a professional club Velez Sarsfield, where he was enrolled into their academy.
Almada eventually made his way through the club’s youth ranks and was rewarded with a first-team debut in August 2018, coming just 4 months on from his 17th birthday.
In his first season under Velez Sarsfield’s manager Gabriel Heinze, Almada racked up 16 Superliga appearances, where he contributed three goals with two assists. Against Defensa in his first ever start for the Sarsfield, Almada produced a wonderful performance that caught the attention of the fans and other onlookers. A performance that was eventually capped with a brace.
Almada has also shown his ability to play in any attacking position, either as right or left winger and also as a regular midfielder.
He likes to make bursting runs, running past his marker effortlessly with intelligent movement and quick footwork. He has the ability to keep the ball closely at his feet (like Messi?).
Just like Uruguayan international forward Luis Suarez, Amanda is very tenacious, as he doesn’t give up easily, closing down his opponents.
Standing at 5ft 7in, with a low centre of gravity, quick feet and quick reading of the game has brought comparisons to Argentine legends Lionel Messi and Diego Maradona.
In 2019, Almada got a call-up to Argentine U-20 squad for the South American Championship in the summer. A competition where they finished as runners-up to eventual winner Ecuador. Almada then signed a new four-year contract with Velez Sarsfield, which includes a €25m (£22m/$28m) release clause.
This season, Almada has scored five goals and providing two assists in just 22 appearances thus far.
With his constant improvement in his performances, a summer signing looks increasingly inevitable.