Chelsea have been linked with a move for fifteen year-old Colombian striker Joao Rodriguez according to reports in South America this week.
The forward, who will turn 16 in May, is amongst the most prolific goalscorers in his age group in the entire continent and particularly caught the eye of Blues scouts last November, when he scored four times in the Campeonato Sudamericano Sub-15.
That was the latest in a series of impressive performances by the Boca Juniors de Cali youngster, who is the son of Willy Rodriguez, who played at the top level in Colombia for much of the 90s before retiring after suffering a knee injury.
A nimble, quick dribbler with a composed finish – as THIS lengthy video will attest to – Rodriguez claims to draw inspiration from not only Cristiano Ronaldo, but former Brazilian international Ronaldo as well.
Chelsea’s interest in the region is largely controlled by former Uruguayan international Victor de los Santos and they have been relatively active in the market over the last few years, most notably concerning strikers.
Franco Di Santo’s high-profile move was followed by a deal to acquire Jhon Pirez and most recently Brazilian Lucas Piazon, whilst in more recent times De Los Santos and colleague Jorge Alvial have focused their attentions on Mexico with the signing of Ulises Dávila and increased activity in the junior age groups there.
Rodriguez, who has agreed to sign for Chelsea according to El Espectador, would not be eligible to move to Europe until he turns 18 under FIFA transfer laws, and as such unearthing any great information on the deal may prove to be hard in the short term.
For now, it simply adds to the increasingly common theme that those currently running affairs at Stamford Bridge are as enamoured with Latin American football as anyone could possibly be, and continue to turn their attentions towards that model for the future.
As news on this story develops, keep one eye here on TheChels.net and on Twitter by following @chelseayouth.