Rodrygo has been Carlo Ancelotti’s super substitute in Real Madrid’s epic trip to the Champions League final against Liverpool, but it could have been Jurgen Klopp showing off the Brazilian in his ranks
If the fact that they are still standing for an unprecedented quadruple in the first week of May is not enough evidence, then perhaps his astonishing tally of 139 goals this season in four competitions will hammer home the point. But despite an attack that includes Mohammed Salah, sadio mane Y luis diaz to name just a few, Klopp will soon meet an electric striker who got away.
In the night that could become the quadruple dream in reality, the Reds face real Madrid at the Stade de France in Paris on Saturday May 28 for a delicious Champions League final. There, the Liverpool coach will observe Los Blancos’ hero, Rodrygo, and his teammates from the bench. bid to win a record 14th European Cup – but it won’t be the first time he’s seen the 21-year-old up close and personal.
According to the Brazilian’s agent, Nick Arcuri, Klopp was keen to sign Rodrygo when he was just 16 years old and still plying his trade in his homeland with Saints. The Reds boss was so fascinated that he reportedly made a trip to Sao Paulo to get a better idea of the pedigree of his transfer target.
“When Rodrygo went to sign his first professional contract with Santos, at the age of 16, a manager from Liverpool called me saying that Klopp already knew the player, had seen the material, had already come to see Rodrygo in person,” Arcuri explained. Canal do Nicola. “I had entered YouTube, searched for ‘brazilian talents’, Rodrygo had appeared and he was very young.
“He came to Brazil and he liked it. They contacted me, the manager of Liverpool wanted him to be his first signing, Rodrygo. I went to England, I sat in London, Liverpool has an office in London. He brought the proposal to Modesto. [Roma Junior]then president of Santos.
“Modesto did not accept. It turned out that Santos did not want to sell Rodrygo and instead made the first professional contract. But it was Rodrygo’s first official proposal, he was 16 years old and it was Liverpool”.
While Klopp’s apparent trip can be questioned, it seems clear that Liverpool were seriously interested in signing Rodrygo.
Ex- manchester city midfield player Elano Blumer He managed the winger at Santos and revealed that Rodrygo rejected the Reds’ advances in favor of Madrid, dealing a rare blow to Anfield’s recruiting squad at the start of the Klopp era. “There was a period when there was a very strong negotiation from Liverpool for him to leave when he was still very young,” Elano said. ESPN.
“The values were very low, but he wanted to leave. Real Madrid’s offer later was about 30 million euros (25 million pounds) more. I had a conversation with the Santos people and said that it was worth betting on the boy and that we should upload it because I would like to work with him. Thank God everything went well thanks to Rodrygo”.
Now, after a £38m transfer in 2018 and a few campaigns finding his feet, it’s Charles Ancelotti that boasts of the covered five Brazil international in their ranks, notably using his speed and eye for goal from the end of Champions League knockout matches.
As a substitute, Rodrygo scored a decisive goal to win the quarterfinals for Real against chelsea to overtime, where Karim Benzema did the rest. And in Wednesday’s epic semi-final clash with Man City, the Samba sensation stunned the Santiago Bernabéu by scoring two goals in as many minutes of stoppage time to force another half hour of action once again after being substituted. .
Although the well-taken headers that sank Pep Guardiola And with those not his forte, Rodrygo has been able to showcase his tricky talents on the home front this term. Since the second leg with Chelsea, he has recorded four managerial goal contributions in three The league games to help Los Blancos clinch the title with four games to spare.
With the final and number 14 now his only target, Rodrygo already has his sights set on making Liverpool regret their low bid in just over three weeks. “I am very happy to be able to score two goals in the semi-final and take Madrid to the place where it always belongs, the Champions League final, and win it,” he said Wednesday after the match.
“I couldn’t hear what my teammates were telling me because I couldn’t believe what was happening. We were losing the game, my first goal in the 90th minute and we were dead, and then what happened happened.
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“That is the best version of myself in the Champions League, and I hope I can continue to score many more times. With this shirt we learn to always fight until the end and that’s how it was.
“We conceded a goal and we were almost dead, but with my first goal we started to believe because we have fought in other games, and then the second came. From now on, we turn our attention to Liverpool. We have another.” four LaLiga games that we can use to prepare for the final”.