Why Newcastle United should sign Alan Velasco with an eye on the future
Italian club Parma and Mexican giants Club America have also been mentioned among the potential suitors for the 18-year-old attacker.
It has also been claimed that Velasco has a release clause of £17.5million in his contract at Independiente and the Argentine heavyweights are determined to ensure that he is sold for the right price. (Sport Witness h/t Shields Gazette)
Velasco started his footballing education at Independiente after joining the club back in 2012. He represented the club across various age-groups before being promoted to the first-team towards the end of the 2018-19 campaign, aged just 16.
The highly-rated winger made his competitive debut against Colombian outfit Rionegro Aguilas in the Copa Sudamericana – the Europa League equivalent in South America. Having played a bit-part role in the previous campaign, Velasco has really come to the fore with some eye-catching displays this term.
The diminutive left-winger has amassed 3 goals and 3 assists in 22 appearances for Independiente in all competitions so far. Velasco is yet to establish himself as a regular starter at his boyhood club but has already done enough to attract potential suitors in Europe, including Newcastle United.
Putting things into context, Alan Velasco might not be the finished article just yet but he certainly ticks plenty of boxes as a good long-term investment for Newcastle. That he has already started to rub shoulders with the senior pros at the tender age of 18 clearly underlines his potential to push for greater heights in his career.
The Magpies have taken a keen interest in unearthing gems from the South American market in recent windows. Steve Bruce’s side snapped up highly-rated Peruvian international Rodrigo Vilca in the summer and the youngster has been successfully integrated into the club’s U-23 side at the Premier League 2 level.
Alan Velasco is unlikely to stake a claim for a place in Steve Bruce’s senior ranks during the second half of the season even if a January move to St. James’ Park does materialise. Newcastle would need to be patient with his development, taking the cultural and climatic differences between South America and England into account.
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Having said that, the right course of action for Newcastle would be to sign him and then loan him out to some other club in Europe where he would play regularly. While there are no guarantees that Velasco would be able to make the grade in the Premier League, his early potential should definitely prompt the Magpies to take a punt on the Argentine starlet.