People may not like it but the fact remains that in modern football no matter your age or nationality you can become a serious transfer target. That is the case for Riechedly Bazoer, who can probably put claim to the throne as the worlds most wanted 16-year-old. This dynamic is especially clear in the Premier League where several teams have been linked with a move for the talented defender.
The Dutch under-17 international may cite Barcelona as his favourite team and Paris Saint-Germain defender Thiago Silva his favourite player but there is no doubt the majority of interest in his signature is emanating from England.
He was groomed by Utrecht based club USV Elinkwijk who also had a hand in the future success of Marco Van Basten and Ibrahim Afellay and if he becomes as near as good as either of these talents then the clamour for his signing makes sense.
The pursuit has angered PSV’s Sporting Director Marcel Brands who is adamant that Bazoer should stay in Holland for the good of his career:
'We have offered him a professional contract now he has turned 16. I speak with the family, the boy and his agents. We hope we will get an answer soon. What is his intention? Is it to develop or go for bigger money in England? You have to ask him and his agent which clubs are interested in him. I don't know and it doesn't matter. It is his choice and the agent will do their best for the player. The only thing we can do is offer him good possibilities in terms of coaching and prospects.'
So with Manchester City, Arsenal, Newcastle United and Chelsea all chasing him why are Di Matteo’s Blues potentially the favourites to sign him. Well it goes back to what Brands said about his agent. His current agency is Forza Sports Group, as was confirmed on their official website on the 30th October.
The company specialises in the Dutch and Belgian market place and interestingly count two Chelsea talents among their clients. Nathan Ake, who himself was prised away from Dutch outfit Feyenoord in controversial fashion aged just 15, is a hot prospect with Chelsea’s youth team and is expected to one day make the step up to the first team. Then there is Kenneth Omeruo, another Chelsea starlet currently causing waves on-loan at Dutch club ADO Den Haag.
While it is a tentative link the wider press is starting to believe that Chelsea have the upper hand and with the links his agency already have with The Bridge there is no doubt a move to Chelsea may be more likely than any other.
Is the link to tentative? Or does his agencies link with Chelsea make them serious favourites?
image: © Jason Bagley