Why Chelsea want “heir of Cafu” even though they’ve got 3 top right backs already

Chelsea’s insatiable hunger for young South American talent has found a mouth watering new prospect, according to reports in Brazil.

ESPN are claiming that Pedro Lima, a 17 year old right back referred to as the “heir of Cafu” is being watched by the Blues as he makes his first steps in the senior game for Sport Recife in Serie B of the Brazilian championship.

According to them, the Blues already tabled an offer worth £6.2m back in January to try and secure the youngster before the other interested European clubs could get their act together. Lima played in the last under 17 World Cup with Brazil, so he’s hardly an unknown.

As with all other under 18s signed from Brazil, he wouldn’t be able to join Chelsea officially until after his 18th birthday – but that is coming up this summer. The plan in January would have been to loan him to our affiliate Strasbourg.

“There are indeed inquiries from big clubs in Europe. We know of many clubs that are monitoring him, but there is no concrete proposal, there is nothing formalized today. But we have no doubt that Pedro Lima will be one of the greats names in Brazilian football in the coming years”, said João Marcelo Barros, Sport’s director of football.

Pedro Lima dribbles to ball in training

A new model for Chelsea’s transfers

With Reece James back to full fitness, Malo Gusto looking like a potentially world class player as his alternate, plus top talents like Josh Acheampong coming through the academy, one might think that the Blues are already replete with talent at right wing back.

But that’s not how this new model works – it’s all about speculating and accumulating. Who cares if Lima doesn’t even get a chance to play for Chelsea, if he can be bought for cheap, sent to Strasbourg for a few years and then sold off for a profit?

Even if the “hair of Cafu” nickname is a huge exaggeration, a fee of under £3m for a player with serious talent already playing senior football at 17 looks like a bargain.

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