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Who Is This Highly Rated £3m Barcelona Starlet That The English Giants Are Chasing? Everything You Need To Know

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Abel Ruiz

Scout Report – Abel Ruiz

According to reports from the Mirror, Premier League trio Arsenal, Chelsea and Manchester City are all vying for a move for highly-rated Barcelona youngster Abel Ruiz.  

The Spain U-17 striker has been tipped as one of the stars of the future and the English giants are closely monitoring the youngster’s progress, with the report also claiming that Arsenal and Chelsea have already made contacts with the player’s camp regarding a possible move.

The 17-year old Ruiz plays for the Barcelona B team in the Spanish second division and the Catalans are desperate to keep him at the club amid serious interests from the English teams. Currently on international duty with the Spain U-17s in the FIFA U-17 World Cup in India, here we bring you a lowdown on the player and take a look at why he is being pursued so heavily by so many big clubs.

Footballing Background 

Born in Almussafes, Spain, on 28 January, 2000, Ruiz joined the academy of Valencia, before making a controversial move to the Barcelona youth setup in 2012 as a 11-year old, after having impressed the La Masia scouts in the Torneo de Brunete, where he was scoring goals for fun. 

Having moved to the La Masia, the young forward continued his rapid development through all the age groups, before breaking into the Barcelona B side towards the end of last season. He also scored twice in seven UEFA Youth League appearances for the U-19s last term.

In the ongoing campaign, the 17-year old has featured in the La Liga 2 for the B team, scoring once – in a 2-2 draw against Granada, while he has also represented the U-19s in the UEFA Youth League.  

Ruiz made his debut for the Spain U-17s in October 2015 in a 2-0 win over Andorra in a UEFA European U-17 Championship qualification. He was one of Spain’s stars in the main competition as they went on to win the European championships in 2017. Ruiz finished the competition with four goals and was also included in the team of the tournament. Currently, he is captaining the Spain U-17 side in the FIFA U-17 World Cup in India, where has already scored thrice in four games. Till date, he has featured in 32 games for the Spanish U-17s, scoring 23 times.  

Style of Play 

An old-fashioned, conventional centre-forward by trade, the 17-year old has made his name with his clinical nature in front of goal and the ability to find the back of the net on a consistent basis at all levels he has played so far.  

Very strong and robust for his young age, Ruiz is known to possess venomous power in his shots and is a force to be reckoned with in the air too, despite being just a little over 5ft 11in. Good at playing with his back towards the goal and holding up the ball, and also brilliant with his ability to bring others into play and take on the opponents, the 17-year old ticks a lot of the boxes required to become a polished centre-forward.  

Ruiz is a huge fan Bayern Munich’s Robert Lewandowski. He idolises the forward and wants to model himself on the Poland international’s mould of being an all-round centre-forward. Going by the early signs, he has the talent and the innate ability needed to grow into a top-class striker like his idol. 

What Does The Future Hold? 

Ruiz has made it clear that he wants to make it to the Barcelona senior team. However, the fear of not getting regular first-team action for the Blaugrana might force him to think about a move away. 

He has a contract with the club until the summer of 2019, which also has a release clause of £3m. Barca are no strangers to young promising talents from their academy joining the English clubs – Cesc Fabregas, Gerard Pique and Hector Bellerin are few of the names that spring to the mind immediately. So they will be keen on avoiding a repeat of such situations with Ruiz, who clearly looks like a real deal.