Barcelona and Real Madrid to battle it out for Portuguese wonderkid
Barcelona and Real Madrid are set to battle it out for the 17-year-old Portuguese, who has been dubbed as the 'next Cristiano Ronaldo'.
What’s the story?
Arch-rivals Barcelona and Real Madrid are set to battle it out for the signature of Portuguese wonder Diogo Dalot, if reports in AS are to be believed. The 17-year-old currently plies his trade in the Portuguese league with FC Porto – although he is yet to debut for the first-team.
The full-back has drawn comparisons with Real Madrid superstar Cristiano Ronaldo due to his physical stature and his quick speed. There have also been suggestions that the 17-year-old should consider switching from a defensive role to one on the wings.
The report further adds that Barcelona have had an initial bid of 10 million rejected by the Portuguese giants as they are holding out for a higher transfer fee – with his release clause set at 20 million.
Real Madrid have also made inquiries regarding his availability and hope to make the player a part of a growing breed of talented upcoming footballers in their ranks – which includes the likes of Marco Asensio, Martin Odegaard among others. The teenager is believed to favour a move to Los Blancos as his idol – Cristiano Ronaldo – plays for them.
To add to all that, Porto are in the middle of an economic crisis and need the money from Dalot’s sale to settle some of thier 135 million debt.
In case you didn’t know...
Dalot played a starring role in Portugal’s triumph at the under-17 European Championship last year – when he scored in the final against Spain, which the Selecao won on penalties. The 17-year-old’s stock has risen considerably since then, which has seen him being fast-tracked to the senior teams.
The heart of the matter
Barcelona have been on the lookout for a right-back ever since Dani Alves moved to Juventus last summer. The Catalan giants have struggled to replace the Brazilian with midfielder Sergi Roberto often being deployed at the position.
Roberto did score the winner in Barcelona’s epic comeback against PSG earlier in the week but he is not world class when it comes to being a full-back. Signing Dalot would not be an immediate solution but it can be seen as a long-term investment.
Real Madrid already have two established right-backs in their squad in the form of Dani Carvajal and Danilo. While the former is definitely one of the best in his position in the world, there have been some qualms about the quality of Danilo. The 17-year-old could well be the future of Madrid’s backline.
Dalot certainly has all the credentials to be a future star for his national side as well as one of the best teams on the planet. Whether he lives up to his potential or not is a completely different scenario.
But with Porto needing the cash from his sale, it can be expected that one of the two Spanish giants will snap up the 17-year-old in the upcoming transfer window, or even before it.