Seats are hard to come across when Chelsea’s legion of Brazilian footballers gather for a meeting, but that hasn’t stopped the Blues procuring yet more talent from the land of joga bonito.
Nathan, billed as one of the hottest Canarinho properties in the business, has confirmed via his Instagram account that he has signed for the Premier League champions, costing a reported £4.5m from Atletico Paranaense.
He isn’t the only Brazilian prodigy who could be parachuted into Stamford Bridge this summer, with Robert Kenedy (don’t be fooled by the Irish name, he’s South American too, honest) also thought to have earned the affection of Jose Mourhino.
The Fluminense striker is another samba soccer exponent coveted by a host of Europe’s fattest cats, though Chelsea are believed to be in with an excellent chance of securing his services.
When recruiting Brazilians for the first team, few can debate the Blues’ success, with Willian, Oscar and Ramires all playing key roles in their 2014/15 title win.
However, when it comes to bolstering the youth ranks with junior Selecao stars, they haven’t been the shrewdest.
Agents masterfully pulled the wool over their eyes in shilling Wallace and Lucas Piazon to the west London outfit for a combined £15m.
Vernacular such as ‘in-demand’, ‘sought-after’ and ‘brightest prospect in Brazilian football’ worked a charm then, just as it seems to have done with Nathan and Kenedy.
Right-back Wallace hasn’t started a single game for Vitesse Arnhem since the end of January.
He was afforded just 45 minutes of Vitas’ 4-1 tonking at Heerenveen and hasn’t been in from the off since.
The form of Peter Bosz’s side since vindicate Wallace’s exclusion, with the club losing just one of the 14 matches he has failed to start, with their win percentage without him standing at 60%, as opposed to 31% when he makes the teamsheet.
It’s also important to note the Eredivisie overachievers haven’t kept a single clean sheet this term with their borrowed Blue in from the first whistle.
Lucas Piazon is faring better in the Bundesliga, but only slightly.
He has been selected to start just 11 matches this season, making as many substitute appearances and scoring twice.
Mitigation is presented through the fact that Thomas Schaaf has been using Piazon almost exclusively in a wide berth this term, but a haul of zero assists in the German top tier promptly negates this minor plus point.