Is reported Liverpool and Watford target the new Roque Santa Cruz?

(THE SUN OUT, THE SUN ON SUNDAY OUT) Jurgen Klopp of Liverpool With Javi  Gracia  of Watford during  the Premier League match between Watford FC and Liverpool FC at Vicarage Road on...

Liverpool and Watford are reportedly battling to lure Fluminense forward Joao Pedro to the Premier League.

Brazil's Fluminense Joao Pedro (R) celebrates after scoring a goal against Colombia's Atletico Nacional during their Copa Sudamericana football match at Maracana stadium in Rio de Janeiro,...

Reported Liverpool and Watford target Joao Pedro could be the new Roque Santa Cruz. At least, that is according to esteemed South American expert Tim Vickery.

Both Premier League clubs have been heavily linked with the latest wonder kid to emerge from Brazilian football with Sky Sports claiming that Watford are confident of getting a deal done, having agreed terms over a £2 million transfer fee with Pedro’s current club Fluminense.

Liverpool are not willing to give up just yet, however, Globo Esporte reporting that the Reds are hoping to hijack Watford’s deal at the eleventh hour.

 

But whoever wins the race will sign a striker who has eight goals in just 11 senior appearances – including a perfect hat-trick against Atletico Nacional in the Copa Sudamerica last week.

And Vickery sees a glimpse of former Bayern Munich, Manchester City and Blackburn striker Santa Cruz in Pedro.

“He has gone, in the space of ten days, not even a household name in his own home to now being the star that everyone wants to see,” Vickery told Sky.

“As a player, he reminds me a little bit of a young Roque Santa Cruz. Similar frame. Joao Pedro is perhaps a little more sinuous but a similar lanky frame, pace, two-footed.

Blackburn's Paraguayan striker Roque Santa Cruz celebrates scoring a goal during their Premier League match against Portsmouth at Fratton Park, Portsmouth, England, on April 27, 2008. AFP...

“We have to pay tribute to the Watford scouting network (who also signed Richarlison from Fluminense in 2017).”

Injuries might have prevented Santa Cruz from fulfilling his huge potential but he was still a fine goal-scorer in his prime, netting 19 in a superb 2007/08 Premier League season at Blackburn Rovers.

It remains to be seen whether Joao Pedro can make the same impact in England.

Joao Pedro of Fluminense celebrates a scored goal during a match between Fluminense and Cruzeiro as part of Brasileirao Series A 2019 at Maracana Stadium on May 18, 2019 in Rio de Janeiro,...

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