Thiago Almada’s Move to Botafogo: A Game Changer for Brazilian Soccer

In a move that could transform South American soccer, Thiago Almada is set to leave Atlanta United for Botafogo, with a $20 million deal in the works.
David, CC BY 2.0 , via Wikimedia Commons
David, CC BY 2.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

Today, June 24, 2024, Italian sports journalist Fabrizio Romano reported that the current World Cup winner Thiago Almada is close to leaving America with a potential move to Brazil set to be closed in the near future.

 Thiago Almada is a 23-year-old attacking midfielder from Argentina. Currently playing for Atlanta United, the youngster is considered to be one of the most skilled players in the country. 

His capability to create goal-scoring situations and spectacular one-on-one abilities have caused him to be a standout player in the MLS, and as a result, many teams from all over the world have been keeping an eye on him. 

Teams such as Ajax from the Netherlands, Boca Juniors from Argentina, and most recently Botafogo from Brazil have tried acquiring the Atlanta United number 10. But as reported earlier today by the very reliable Fabrizio Romano, it looks like the Brazilian side Botafogo will be the one to seal the deal after a $20 million bid was made for the youngster.

This move to Botafogo will come as a result of the club being a part of the Eagle Football Group. 

The strategy behind the move will be that Almada will go to Brazil on a short-term transfer, and after making an impact on Botafogo, the youngster will move on to another club within the group, like Lyon or Crystal Palace.

 Even though the player’s stay in Brazil is expected to be short, since Thiago himself has stated that his aspirations are to play in Europe, Botafogo will gain a high-caliber player and the situation is an overall win-win for the player, the club, and ultimately the entirety of the Eagle Football Group.

Beyond the technicalities of how multi-club ownership works, one thing is clear: Thiago Almada’s move to Brazil is huge for South American soccer.

 Traditionally, top South American talents move directly to Europe. Thiago’s move to a Brazilian club would show that South American clubs can retain and attract high-quality players. 

Besides the fact that Almada’s presence in the league would enhance the overall quality of the whole league, it will also increase the visibility of the league and make it much more appealing to international viewers.

For Botafogo, the impact of Thiago’s transfer would be tremendous. 

Having a World Cup-winning young talent choose Botafogo over Europe would greatly elevate Botafogo’s status. 

The transfer would shock the footballing world and bring a lot of attention to Botafogo’s brand and could potentially set a precedent for future high-profile signings since this historic transfer will make Botafogo a more attractive destination for other top talents. 

Almada’s move to Brazil will mark a transformative moment in Brazilian soccer, indicating a shift in player movement trends and the enhancement of the competitiveness of the league as a whole.

For America, the loss of a superstar like Thiago Almada will just be a reinstatement of the perception that many people have of the MLS: that it’s just a stepping stone for young talent and a final destination for retired players. 

On the other hand, the transfer can be seen as the MLS slowly gaining its role in developing world-class players, which could as a result attract more young players who are looking to follow a similar path as that of Almada.

 However, nothing is concrete yet as it’s reported that Eagle Football has reached an agreement with Almada but is yet to negotiate with Atlanta United, the team with which the player has a contract that goes till 2025.

So, until any official declarations are made, the footballing world will be paying close attention to what unfolds as this historic transfer is set to take place soon, with the Brazilian transfer window opening on July 10. 

Thiago Almada’s move to Botafogo, orchestrated by the Eagle Football Group, promises to be a transformative event with significant implications for South American soccer and beyond.

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