Breaking through in the cutthroat Premier League is tough for anyone, let alone a young Brazilian far from home, but Richarlison is winning at Watford
Brazilian football is known to be the source of plenty of beautiful surprises for football fans, and this season has been no different. One young prospect who is making all the headlines in England, is Watford striker, Richarlison. The 20-year old has already caught the eye of many journalists, and is touted to be the next superstar to come out from Brazil.
Richarlison was heavily linked with European giants such as Ajax and Chelsea throughout the summer, but Watford were the quickest to make the move, and were eventually able to secure the services of the Fluminense jewel, for a reported fee of around $15 million. And so far, so good for the attacker – as it seems that he chose the right team to help him develop his talent and express his potential at its fullest.
Many young South Americans have struggled to make the transition to the English Premier League, but just like Gabriel Jesus, Richarlison has so far been one of the exceptions. No one expected him to adapt as quickly, and to already cement himself at a Watford side that has been showing exciting signs, under the tutelage of Portuguese tactician Marco Silva.
During his time at Fluminense, Richarlison had moments of inconsistency but despite that, it was clear to everyone tracking the youngster that he had so much raw talent. This is what he was able to confirm, in the U20 South American championship with Brazil’s national team in January, in a tournament where he was arguably his country’s best player.
Following the continental competition, Richarlison returned stronger than ever for the Carioca side, and started banging in goals for fun. It was no surprise that European clubs showed an interest. Another Brazilian who had followed a similar path during his time in Brazil was Gabriel Barbosa. However, he made the wrong move and rushed. To Richarlison’s credit, he chose a club that was willing to give him playing time, rather than the bench him or send the footballer on loan spells.
Richarlison seems mentally strong enough both on and off the pitch. His decision to join Watford turned out to be ideal, but besides that, the winger keeps impressing with his confidence during games. Despite missing two sitters against Chelsea – something that he tends to do from time to time, since his Fluminense days – Richarlison maintained his low temper and high self-esteem. His performance was not affected, but it was rather the opposite.
Many journalists in Brazil are already asking that Richarlison be given a chance with the national team, however, the fact that he plays on the left-hand side, means that his direct competitor is a certain Neymar Junior. A call-up for the World Cup in 2018 seems unlikely, as things stand. But with the potential that the 20-year old is displaying, week in week out, you can never rule out anything.
Brazil is preparing for Russia’s World Cup edition, and Tite is reluctant to make fundamental changes in his squad. Copa América 2019, which the five-time World Champions are set to host, could well be the golden opportunity for the Watford-man to break onto the scene.