Barcelona and Brazil legend Dani Alves has lavished immense praise on Real Madrid duo Rodrygo Goes and Vinicius Jr, claiming that the pair are bound for greatness.
Alves, 39, continues to be a part of the Brazil national team setup and is in the squad for the FIFA World Cup 2022, along with Rodrygo and Vinicius.
Having played some of football’s greatest like Kaka, Neymar, and Lionel Messi, among several others, Alves knows what it takes to reach the pinnacle of greatness. And the 39-year-old said that he sees something very special in both Rodrygo and Vinicius.
During an interview with The Guardian, the former Barcelona defender said about Rodrygo:
“I am a big fan of Rodrygo. I could spend all day talking about him. He’s a phenomenon, a prodigious talent who sees things no one else does, who plays where no one else does with daring, personality.
“It’s a long time since I saw a player like him. When he was at Santos I told friends: he’s going to be a football great, without a doubt.”
Talking about Vinicius, Alves added: “Viní brings the spectacular: a brutal individual talent, speed, power, an incredible willingness to take people on. He maybe has to work on the combinative play, which Rodrygo already has, but he’s, wow, amazing.”
However, Alves did insist that the two are still very young and need to keep working, saying: “There’s still a process to come. We can’t forget with a lot of these players that we’re talking about people who are 20, 21, 22.”
Both Rodrygo and Vinicius have grown into critical components of Carlo Ancelotti’s Real Madrid side. They had a big hand in Los Blancos’ La Liga and UEFA Champions League success last season and have been in good form this term as well.
Vinicius has scored ten goals and set up five more in 21 games for Real Madrid this term whereas Rodrygo has seven goals and five assists from 19 matches.
Given the attacking riches at the disposal of Brazil manager Tite, it will be interesting to see how much the Real Madrid duo feature at the World Cup. But, in Dani Alves’ mind, it is clear that both Rodrygo and Vinicius are on the path to greatness.
Benfica have no interest in selling Real Madrid’s midfield target in January – report
Real Madrid’s interest in Benfica and Argentina midfielder Enzo Fernandez is now a well-known fact.
As quoted before, the 21-year-old has a release clause worth €120 million in his current deal and despite strong interest from several suitors, the Portuguese side has no interest in parting ways with the player in January.
The aforementioned information is relayed by transfer market specialist Fabrizio Romano, who also claims that Fernandez’s former side, River Plate, also have a ‘percentage of future sale’.
Enzo Fernandez has been one of the breakout stars at the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar. The 21-year-old has played three games for his national team at the world event and despite playing deep, has returned with a goal and an assist.
Interestingly enough, the 2022/23 season is Fernandez’s first campaign in European football. The midfielder has been with River Plate since 2006 and only moved to Benfica in July 2022 for a fee quoted to be around €10 million plus €8 million in add-ons.
In his debut season with the Portuguese team, he has so far scored one goal in 13 league outings followed by three assists.
Meanwhile, Real Madrid’s interest in the Argentine does not really strike as any surprise. The team from the capital city is anyway looking for a long-term successor to Luka Modric, but as it turns out, Benfica will fight hard to retain their man as they do not wish to sell their asset in January.
From Madrid’s perspective, they are anyway not expected to make any big signing in January as their primary target is still Borussia Dortmund’s Jude Bellingham. The England midfielder is highly tipped to leave Germany at the end of the season and Madrid are said to be the most likely destination if not the Premier League.
In any way, the fee for Bellingham might as well rise upto €120 million given the interest he has generated across the continent so it will be upto Real Madrid to decide between the two.