Manchester United flew to London to try to sign Fulham ace Fabio Carvalho, who was also wanted by Liverpool, Chelsea and Arsenal and “has an aura” that makes comparisons with Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi
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The start of the 2021/22 championship season had a familiar feel as Fulham, along with compatriot West Brom, the Premier League side yoyo, raced to the top.
Fulham was at the top after five games played with an impressive 13 points. Their thrilling attack also scored 13 goals in the process.
Attacking midfielder Fabio Carvalho, who was just 18 at the start of the campaign, was at the heart of this dynamic forward play.
A three-goal return and an assist is not half the problem. Carvalho, who had signed his first pro contract just over a year earlier, passed off the experienced pros as novices having notably spent rings around Millwall’s defense in a 2-1 win at the Den in August .
HMS P *** League memes were hinted at by some Fulham fans online as a straightforward return to the top of the elite seemed inevitable.
However, results plummeted for Marco Silva’s side after Carvalho injured his toe in early September. Losses to Blackpool, Reading as well as a collapse in promoting the Coventry show cannot be taken for granted.
Results have improved in recent weeks with three straight wins putting them back into the automatic promotion spots.
However, Fulham will look down rather than up as Scott Parker’s Bournemouth has a five-point cushion at the top while the Cottagers are just one point ahead of third-place West Brom they play. this weekend, live on the talkSPORT app.
Restless Fulham loyalists, desperate to see Carvalho back, could have their prayers answered on Saturday midday, with Silva confirming the 19-year-old is ready to return to action.
Matches like these are often decided by a magical moment of players who have that X factor, which Carvalho has in abundance, says one of his former London-based Balham FC coaches Greg Cruttwell.
Crutwell told talkSPORT.com: “He appeared on Clapham Common, I was leading a workout with another trainer, Ollie Kanner. We worked together at Balham and Fabio, who was 10 or 11 at the time. , came with her mom and joined the session.
“After 30 seconds when we first hit him with a ball he sent it back and we just looked at each other and our jaws hit the ground and we thought” hello, this kid looks pretty good “.
“During this session, he was fantastic and we could immediately see that he had the X factor. He was magical with the ball, he had great agility and movement, so obviously we told him to come to other workouts!
As the moving displays in training and games continued, it was no surprise that pro clubs struck.
Chelsea and Arsenal were both “very keen” to land this early talent, Liverpool showed interest, while Manchester United even stepped down from Carrington to meet Crutwell over Carvalho.
Fulham were the lucky club to get their hands on Carvalho, who Crutwell says is still the same as the ‘humble’ boy he crossed paths with all those years ago.
But for what Carvalho lacks in arrogance, he doesn’t lack ambition, having been quoted as saying he wants to challenge for the Ballon d’Or in the next few years.
Crutwell insists Carvalho knows it will take a lot of hard work, but adds that the Portugal-born player undoubtedly has an “aura” like that of Cristiano Ronaldo.
On Carvalho being a potential Ballon d’Or contender, Crutwell added: “Why not? You have to aim high, don’t you?
“I’m sure he said that and it’s surely the ultimate ambition for any type of player, especially a playmaker. I’m sure he realizes there are a lot of obstacles. to cross before arriving there. As long as he’s lucky with injuries, the world is his oyster. He definitely has the X factor.
“What you need too, and I’m sure Ronaldo, Lionel Messi and Kylian Mbappe all have it, but when you meet Fabio he lights up a room. His smile lights up a room. He walks in and shakes your hand and you think there is something in him, he has an aura.
“I’ve worked with a lot of good players, but he just has that X factor and that little something.”
Achieving all of this at Craven Cottage is unlikely, however. Carvalho’s ambition and the fact that his contract ends in June have sparked many rumors about his future.
But Crutwell has warned the player not to fall into the same trap as previous young Fulham stars.
Crutwell said: “Fulham has been very generous with us in terms of the contracts given to him. I want him to be in Fulham for a considerable time because I think it’s the right thing for him.
“When you look at players like Patrick Roberts, who went to Man City very young (£ 11million), there was also Ryan Sessegnon. They both left for a lot of money but for me they went too early. I would like to see him stay this season and not be in a rush to make a move.
“Leeds, Real Madrid and Barcelona – there has been talk of all these clubs around him, but I think the power is in his hands. I don’t think he should move too soon.
Listen to the full Fulham vs West Brom commentary live on the talkSPORT app, kicking off at 12:30 p.m.
Latest News Headlines Yahoo news Manchester United flew to London to try to sign Fulham ace Fabio Carvalho, who was also wanted by Liverpool, Chelsea and Arsenal and “has an aura” that makes comparisons with Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi