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Chelsea hit another jackpot

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One would be hard-pressed at the current moment to find anything positive about Chelsea FC. It has been a turbulent year for the club where they have seen their ownership change, their Champions League winning manager Thomas Tuchel fired, and his replacement Graham Potter fired. On top of that, they are currently in 12th, closer to the relegation zone than the top four. However, one area where they have continued to perform is the transfer market. And the signing of Benfica’s young star Diego Moreira is the latest testament to that.

A youth product of Standard Liege and SL Benfica, Moreira was a highly sought-after player, with several clubs chasing him. In the end, though, it was Chelsea who beat everyone to the talented teenager. While it is highly unlikely that he will be anywhere near the first team for at least a season, his addition does bode well for the future of Chelsea.

So, who is Diego Moreira, and how good is he?

Who is Diego Moreira?

Diego Manuel Jadon da Silva Moreira was born on August 6, 2004 in Liege, Belgium. At that time, Moreira’sfather, Almami, was playing for Belgium’s top-flight club Standard Liege and was also a part of the Guinea-Bissau national football team.

This was the reason why Diego’s first foray into football came at the youth academy of Standard Liege. He spent the majority of his youth career at the Belgian club, where he progressed through various age groups over the years.

His incredible performance also caught the eyes of the Belgian national team, who in 2019 called him to the under-15 squad. However, things were not going smoothly at the club level, with Moreira looking for better opportunities.

And this is why in August 2020, the youngster left Belgium for Portugal by joining SL Benfica. In addition, he also ditched Belgium and chose to represent Portugal. It turned out to be a masterstroke move for the player, who immediately got six matches for the under-23s.

Diego Moreira stats 

His first season was nothing spectacular, but with a proper pre-season under his belt, Diego Moreira was a far better player in the next one. During the 2021-22 season, Moreira played for different age groups. He made ten appearances for the under-23s scoring one goal.

However, Moriera reserved his best for the UEFA Youth League. Playing all ten games, Moreira scored four goals and provided five assists, including two in the final against Red Bull Salzburg, as Benfica won their first-ever title.

For his supreme performances, Moreira was granted a 22-minute appearance in the final match of Benfica’s senior team against Pacos de Ferreira.

When the 2022-23 season started, Moreira was deemed too talented for the under-23s and thus was promoted to the reserve side. At the same time, he was also part of the under-19s in their UEFA Youth League campaign.

Moreira has played 28 games this season, scoring three goals and providing four assists which have been a decent return.

Diego Moreira’s playing style and potential 

Diego Moreira is a player who is capable of playing on both wings but has now settled on the left wing. What makes the teenager unique is that he is equally adept at creating and scoring goals.

Moreira is blessed with incredible pace, but when this gets combined with his brilliant vision, he becomes a player of an elite category. In Benfica’s UEFA Youth League winning campaign, Moreira was more often than not tasked with creating chances for his team, which he did with excellent efficiency.

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However, one weakness the player has is his weaker right foot, which affects his passing and shooting ability when he turns the ball inside. This makes it easy for the opponents who deliberately try to get the ball on his right foot.

Diego Moreira at Chelsea 

With the talent that Chelsea has combined with summer arrivals such as Christopher Nkunku, Moreira’s best would be a spell with the reserves, where he can work on honing his game and take it to the next level.

And players such as Mason Mount have proven that if one has the best talent and temperament, he can succeed at Stamford Bridge. Can Diego Moreira repeat the trick? It remains to be seen.

Saumy Deepak Tripathi
A Bayern Munich fan who is deeply in love with football statistics. Has a soft spot for goalkeepers! (well only he knows why). You’ll find him vibing on 70’s classic songs and spends an abnormal amount of time cooking.

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