23rd December – Five Flamengo stars fit for Europe


Albeit defeat, Flamengo certainly proved they were a force to be reckoned with in the Club World Cup final.

The Brazilian side, under the guidance of Jorge Jesus, lost 1-0 to European champions Liverpool via Roberto Firmino’s cool finish past Diego Alves.

Several veterans like Alves are spending their twilight in their homeland, with former Atletico Madrid full-back Filipe Luis and Bayern Munich man Rafinha playing in Red and Black.

But with the Copa Libertadores winners’ 80-odd game season coming to an end on Saturday, ears in the European transfer market will certainly be perked after their notable performance in Doha.

Here are four in particular who impressed in the Middle-East,

Willian Arao

Much akin to his Chelsea namesake, the defensive midfielder sports a controlled afro and plays with his heart on his sleeve.

But Arao, after beginning his career at Corinthians, has hardly been linked with a move to Europe despite his superiority in the Brazilian Serie A.

The closest he came was an agreed fee with Olympiakos in 2018, but their salary demands were poles apart.

Destructive and dominant in defensive midfield, Willian has made over 200 Flamengo appearances since arriving in 2016. His presence has been described by Jorge Jesus as ‘integral to the system’.

credit – UOL

Rodrigo Caio

A Football Manager bargain back in the day, Caio’s defensive abilities were clear for all to see on Saturday – until he got skinned and put on the floor by Roberto Firmino’s dancing shoes.

Although Caio isn’t quite saying goodbye within his surname, he may be to Flamengo if his performances warrant it.

Credit – UOL (Flamengo)

One of Brazil’s best, he is well-known for being able to dictate from a sweeper role with his long-balls to wingers such as Lincoln and Bruno Henrique.

Caio only stands at 6″0 which might deter potential suitors, but I can see him taking the plunge in the Bundesliga or Serie A soon if he fancies a change in path.

Giorgian De Arrascaeta

See the source image

Credit – Reuters

Already an established international, De Arrascaeta has been playing for his country since 2014 and his Defensor Sporting days.

The midfielder has been with Flamengo since the beginning of this season, hitting 13 goals in 23 games.

De Arrascaeta has been linked with both Milan clubs, Barcelona, and Manchester United in the past, but it seems as if at 25 he is settled being a big fish in a small pond in South America.

Gabriel Barbosa

Barbosa showed shades of Neymar after his inauguration at Santos. He’s the only one in this list who’s actually played in Europe before.

In fact, he technically still does.

On loan at Flamengo from Inter Milan, the side he joined in 2016, he’s smashed 25 in 29 games for Mengão and is sure to have impressed his new manager Antonio Conte.

See the source image

Credit – Reuters

Gabigol is beloved in Brazil and is clearly comfortable – whether he is to succeed and fulfil his potential it remains to be seen.

He’s made five appearances for Brazil, scoring against Panama and Haiti under Dunga.


The youngest of the list, contrary to his name this Lincoln is not the city in the East Midlands.

Another Footy Manager wonderkid, Lincoln plays as an inside forward and caused minimal impact on his arrival on to the pitch in Doha.

He made his professional debut aged just 16 in September 2017 against Corinthians at Ilho d0 Urubu. After this European Super Clubs such as Real Madrid, Barcelona, Atletico Madrid, Manchester United and Liverpool all sent scouts to watch the teenager.

He’s hit only five goals in a tender young career, with plenty of time to make the big European move he could make in the future.


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Sports Journalism student, streamer at LFC Transfer Room, Anfield Agenda. Liverpool fan with a particular interest in Welsh, Youth, and African football.

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