Jeremie Boga models himself on Eden Hazard and, if Zinedine Zidane gets his way, the former Chelsea teammates could be fighting for a place in Real Madrid’s starting XI next season.
According to Defensa Central, Real Madrid have instructed chief scout Juni Calafat to stretch his feelers out to Serie A. More specifically, Sassuolo.
Los Blancos boss Zidane has been a big admirer of Boga’s weaving ways for a number of years and, with the former France youth star now firmly established at a top European league, an offer from the 13-time European champions could be just around the corner.
After all, when Calafat is involved, it usually means Madrid are serious.
It was he who convinced Real to invest big money in Vinicius Jr, Rodrygo Goes, Fede Valverde and Reinier Jesus.
Sassuolo value Boga at £30 million but you would imagine that fee will rise considerably as soon as the Spanish champions make their interest known.
And while the Ivory Coast international would hardly be guaranteed a place in Zidane’s starting XI with Hazard back to full fitness and desperate to make up for a lost year at the Santiago Bernabau, Real’s powers of persuasion are legendary.
When they set their sights on a player, they usually get their man.
With all due respect to the likes of Crystal Palace and Everton, who were linked with the one-time Birmingham City loanee recently via Sky Sports, a Premier League club dreaming of the Europa League can’t compete with that gleaming white shirt – even with Carlo Ancelotti on the touchline.
In March, FootMercato reported Arsenal were interested in bringing Boga back to London, perhaps hoping the winger could emulate the impact of fellow Chelsea misfits Mo Salah and Kevin de Bruyne in England.
That £25 million fee proved too rich, however, with the Gunners going for what seemed a low-cost safe bet instead.
Out-of-sorts Willian has done little to solve a dearth of creativity from Mikel Arteta’s attack, however, while Boga shines in a Sassuolo side sitting second in Serie A.
Sassuolo coach Roberto di Zerbi thinks only one player in the game is better than Boga when it comes to skipping past full-backs – a certain Lionel Messi.
In La Liga, Boga may get the chance to live up to such lofty acclaim.