Chelsea could already have ideal Jorginho successor after ‘leader’ who ‘rules the game’ makes media go wild
Chelsea may already have their Jorginho successor and he’s not named Enzo Fernandez, though the player in question cannot actually play for the club as yet.
Andrey Santos, 18, signed for the Blues from Vasco da Gama for around £12m last month. The midfielder penned a seven-and-a-half-year contract with Graham Potter’s team, but quickly returned to South America to play in the under-20 Championship for Brazil.
Nevertheless, Chelsea supporters have reason to be excited about when Santos eventually becomes available, as he arguably has the ability to go straight into their starting XI.
Italian journalists have been covering the midfielder’s performances in the competition and it’s fair to say he’s been in excellent form so far.
Corriere Dello Sport describe the 18-year-old as ‘the leader of Brazil,’ adding that he ‘rules the game’ and ‘has the insertion times of a midfielder and an attacking midfielder’.
The report also named Santos as ‘one of the stars of the tournament’, which is set to conclude in a couple of weeks.
They label the youngster as Jorginho’s successor, following the midfielder’s shock move to Arsenal on deadline day, which is high praise indeed.
The only issue with Santos’ arrival though, is that there are reportedly issues with his work permit.
Reports coming out of Brazil suggest that Chelsea’s representatives are still trying to get the youngster a visa so he can play for the Blues this season.
Since Santos never made an appearance for Vasco de Gama’s first team, it is believed that the London club will use his performances in Brazil’s youth team to convince the FA to allow them to register him.
Jorginho’s departure leaves void in Chelsea midfield
There is no doubt that Jorginho was a monumental player for Chelsea.
After joining the Blues in 2018, he played a major part in their recent success, as well as captaining them on multiple occasions.
In fact, in 2021 the midfielder was a contender for the Ballon d’Or, finishing in third place after winning the European Championships with Italy and the Champions League with Chelsea – the best performance from a Blues player since Frank Lampard was runner-up in 2005.
Overall, since making his £57m move to Stamford Bridge from Napoli, he has made 213 appearances for Chelsea, scoring 29 goals – many of which were penalties using his trademark hop, skip and jump technique.
As well as his Champions League victory in 2021, Jorginho has also won a Europa League, a UEFA Super Cup, and a Club World Cup with the London club.
With all that in mind, it is a tall order for Santos to fill his shoes straight away at such a young age.
It seems much more likely that Chelsea’s record-breaking £106m signing Enzo Fernandez will slot into the midfield ahead of Santos.
However, given how frantically Chelsea are scrambling to register him for the second half of the season, it seems they already rate Santos highly enough to play a key role under Potter.
READ MORE: Boehly in heated clash over next Chelsea midfield target after Fernandez, as Potter explains Jorginho sale to Arsenal