Right from minute one, it was clear there is something special about Matheus Cunha.
A hot-stepping, high-kicking Brazilian, the Hertha Berlin forward is the living, breathing embodiment of ‘jogo bonito’. See his Bundesliga Goal of the Season winner against Bayer Leverkusen last season; a pirouette so balletically beautiful it belongs more to the Nutcracker than it a football pitch, followed by a sublime chip which nestled into the net.
It was an effort Ronaldinho, Ronaldo, Neymar, heck even the great Pele himself would have been proud to call their own.
And since swapping RB Leipzig for Hertha Berlin in January for a bargain £15 million, Cunha has started to add a ruthless streak to his god-given technical gifts.
The 23-year-old found the net for four successive Bundesliga games recently and is already being linked with a mega-money switch to Inter Milan.
“He has a deadly shot, you can never stop him, and he has incredible acceleration,” Paolo Tramezzani, a former Inter ace who won the UEFA Cup with the Nerazzuri in the 90s, tells FCInterNews.
“He is an extraordinary boy. A hard worker with a great desire to improve, always focused and on the game. He is very mature from this point of view.
“He could be like Mourinho’s (Samuel) Eto’o at Inter: an all-out striker. Deadly up front, but also one who runs and sacrifices a lot for the team.”
A matter of days before he was unveiled by Hertha Berlin, Cunha was linked with a move to Wolverhampton Wanderers via Sky Sports.
And, while the Molineux faithful don’t have too many reasons to feel sorry for themselves right now, Wolves fans everywhere must be watching Cunha’s match-changing displays through their fingers.
Whether he can follow in the footsteps of Eto’o, one of the most lethal strikers of the 21st century, is up to him to prove. Did Wolves miss out on a good striker – or a great one?
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