Antonio Nusa: Second youngest Champions League scorer draws comparisons to Neymar

FPL360
By FPL360
Antonio Nusa: Second youngest Champions League scorer draws comparisons to Neymar

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The Talent Calendar 

Even though Brugge were already up by three goals against Porto, the attack remained relentless. Debutant Antonio Nusa was sent into the box by Casper Nielsen, where he beat Portuguese goalkeeper Diogo Costa with a placed shot to make it 4-0. It was the player’s second ever goal for Brugge overall and his first in the Champions League. “Dreams do come true,” he would later write on his Instagram profile. Nusa is the second youngest goalscorer in the Champions League; only Barcelona’s Ansu Fati was younger when he scored his first goal in 2019.  

“I didn’t think I would be playing, but all of a sudden, it was 3-0, and I received my chance,” Nusa said after the game in an interview with Nieuwsblad. The usual phone call with his parents after every match was a bit more emotional than usual. “I will always keep it,” Nusa said when asked what happened to his shirt from that match. The game against Porto was already Nusa’s seventh appearance for Brugge, who was signed for a significant fee last summer. The Belgian club paid Stabæk Fotball €3m in the summer of 2021 for the then 16-year-old. Nusa had made his professional debut just a few months earlier and left his academy club after just 13 games (three goals). “At first, I wasn’t sure if a transfer wasn’t coming too early, but I believed in their plan,” Nusa said about the transfer. 

Nusa also admitted in the interview that getting used to a new environment took him some time. “I didn’t feel 100%, and I struggled a bit to start with,” Nusa said. As a result, the talent was first integrated with the academy rather than the first team. Because his family stayed in Norway, Nusa lived with another academy player at a guest family. “As soon as I got used to my new environment, I started to regain my form, and that is when I got my first chance,” Nusa said. After two months with the club, he finally received his first chance with the first team, coming off the bench in the second half in the Cup game against second-division side KMSK Deinze. But then he had to wait once more for further opportunities. 

Talents-Calendar 2021: Where are they now?

Hugo Félix | Portugal | Market value: –

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Hugo Félix

Chaka Traorè | Ivory Coast | Market value: –

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Chaka Traorè

Mikayil Faye | Senegal | Market value: –

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Für Mikayil Faye ist der Traum von einem Wechsel nach Europa bisher nicht in Erfüllung gegangen. Vom Diambars FC ging es nicht wie erwartet zum Partnerklub Olympique Marseille, ein Beraterwechsel sorgte für Unmut auf allen Seiten. Stattdessen trainierte Faye im Sommer bei Dinamo Zagreb mit und wurde auch mit Stade Reims in Verbindung gebracht, zur Unterschrift kam es aber nirgends. Faye hängt seitdem ohne Spielpraxis in der Luft.

Zum Porträt im Talentekalender 2021!

Julen Jon Guerrero | Spain | Market value: –

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Für Julen Jon Guerrero

Himanshu Jangra | Indien | Market value: €50,000

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Himanshu Jangra

Ajani Burchall | Bermuda | Market value: €100,000

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Ajani Burchall

Marselino Ferdinan | Indonesia | Market value: €225,000

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Marselino Ferdinan

Maro Katinic | Croatia | Market value: €500,000

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Maro Katinic

Liam Chipperfield | Switzerland | Market value: €500,000

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Liam Chipperfield

Samson Baidoo | Austria | Market value: €1m

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Samson Baidoo

Luka Romero | Argentina | Market value: €1m

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Luka Romero

Cher Ndour | Italy | Market value: €1m

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Cher Ndour

Lucas Copado | Germany | Market value: €1m

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Lucas Copado

Abdoulaye Kamara | Guinea | Market value: €1m

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Abdoulaye Kamara

Emre Demir | Turkey | Marktwert: €1.8m

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Emre Demir

Daniel Samek | Czechia | Market value: €2m

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Daniel Sameks

Daniil Khudyakov | Russia | Market value: €2.5m

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Daniil Khudyakov

Shola Shoretire | England | Market value: €4m

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Shola Shoretire

Gabriel Slonina | USA | Market value: €8m

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Gabriel Slonina

Julio Enciso | Paraguay | Market value: €11m

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Julio Enciso

Momo Cho | France | Market value: €15m

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Momo Cho

Roméo Lavia | Belgium | Market value: €25m

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Roméo Lavias

The winger featured in just three more games, including in the league playoffs against Union SG, where he scored his first-ever goal for Brugge. “He has a big future ahead of him,” goalkeeper Simon Mignolet said after the game. “You can see in training that he is a big talent,” Mignolet added while also pointing out that Nusa is still a young player. “I don’t even feel like a full professional yet,” Nusa said in October. “I am very ambitious, but I am very young and still have to learn.” Nusa described himself as quiet, and his role models are Lionel Messi and Neymar. “Neymar is one of the big reasons why I love football,” Nusa said. “I like seeing his videos on YouTube and always try to emulate his tricks.” 

Nusa’s former teammate at Stabæk, Mats Solheim, certainly sees parallels between the Brugge talent and Neymar. “There are some similarities when you look at his movement and the way he uses the ball,” Solheim said in an interview with VG. Solheim added with a laugh that Neymar is still slightly ahead in his development, but, nonetheless, he believes that the sky is the limit for Nusa. With a market value of €4.5m, Nusa is already the most valuable Norwegian teenager. The winger is also has made the jump to the first team and has featured in 13 games—often as a starter—scoring one goal and one assist. The next goal is to play for Norway at the international level. “Playing with Haaland would be unbelievable.”

From December 1 to 24, we introduce new players from different countries born in 2004. Area managers, users, and data scouts come into play as experts throughout the series. You can follow all those players by adding them to your TM watchlist.


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