Brazil, the joyous nation swarming with footballing talent, from the legendary Pele to the recent emergence of current teenage sensation Neymar, it’s proven to be the feeding nation for upcoming stars. The place where the likes of Ronaldinho, Kaka and Ronaldo all learnt their trade.
Brazilian talent is at an all time high, the likes of Neymar, Lucas Moura, Oscar, Hulk etc. all carry a burden on their shoulders. To give the people of Brazil something the cheer about again after their distasteful decline in the FIFA world rankings. The latest sought after South American to emerge is Cruzeiro’s Everton Ribeiro, and it didn’t take long for Manchester United to test the waters for his signature.
Robson Ferreira [Ribeiro's agent] – “Manchester United want him. David Moyes has been impressed. I’ve already been to England.”
The 24-year-old isn’t the most talked about player from Brazil, simply because of his age. Youth is the vocal point, unless you’re Ronaldinho. However, his performances throughout the season have merited the upmost praise. Appearing 35 times last season, he helped guide Cruzeiro to the title with a handful of immaculate performances, individual brilliance wouldn’t be an overstatement. With a solid contribution of 7 goals and 11 assists, he was rightfully awarded Brazil’s Player of the Year award.
Ribeiro’s a very small footballer, his slight physic allows him to weave in and out of defenders with ease. He’s a traditional modern day attacking-midfielder, using pace, flamboyance and technical brilliance to taunt any defence. Seeing the 24-year-old effortlessly glide past opposition players is a recurring theme in every match, reminiscent to his fellow Brazilian, Ronaldinho. Last season he produced 85 chances and over 60 key passes, evidently showing that he symbolises a player of creativity. He also boasts an accomplished 80% pass accuracy, adding a much needed composure to his creativity.
With all that in mind, he’s also very versatile. A top class player when asked can play almost anywhere [within reason]. In a 4-2-3-1 the Brazilian can play comfortably on the right or left side, he can also patrol behind the striker with great effect. Right midfield is probably his prime position, it allows him to famously cut inside with an injection of pace, opening up the chance to shoot with his deadly left foot.
At times this season, United have been rightfully criticised for their lack of creativity and purpose going forward. Ribeiro would certainly change this, his style of play would bring some impetus and energy to United’s forward play, meaning we’d have to rely less on the likes of Rooney and Januzaj. In my eyes, signing the Brazilian prodigy for a respectful £15m would be an absolute bargain, hopefully David Moyes and Woodward go about their business efficiently and sign him before anyone else does.