Chelsea were beaten by Real Madrid in the race to sign one of football’s most exciting talents last year.

Chelsea previously missed out on a deal to land one of football’s most exciting young talents in Endrick, who will join Real Madrid upon celebrating his 18th birthday next summer. The Brazilian ace has turned plenty of heads with his age-defying performances at Palmeiras and has already been compared to the likes of Pele and Neymar in spite of his tender years.

Endrick was among the hottest properties in world football last year, with a host of top clubs said to have been circling around him after taking note of his sky-high potential. Chelsea were among the sides keen on snapping him up and came very close to getting a deal done, only for Real Madrid to swoop for themselves in a move worth around £62million.

Chelsea had acted quickly to firm up their interest in Endrick by engaging in talks with the teenager and his representatives, while Paris Saint-Germain were also proactive in their pursuit of a deal. Both clubs invited him to their training facilities as they presented the plans they had drawn up to maximise his development, according to The Independent.

Sky Sports also reported that Chelsea welcomed Endrick’s family to their training base at Cobham, where he was greeted by fellow Brazilian and veteran defender Thiago Silva. However, it was not enough to convince him to pick them over Real Madrid, who he ended up committing his future to last December.

Endrick’s move to the Bernabeu was reportedly influenced by the presence of Vinicius Junior, who was said to have been ‘central’ to Real Madrid’s plan to land the teenage forward. The 23-year-old was also plucked from South America at a very young age for a high fee and shares the same agents as Endrick, which would have helped to smooth over negotiations.

It remains to be seen whether Endrick will be able to replicate the success of his countryman in Spain, with the Palmeiras ace having already made a significant impression during his time in Brazil. He became the youngest player to appear for their senior squad when he made his debut aged 16 years, two months and 16 days last October.

Endrick was selected for Brazil duty for the first time earlier this month, having shone at youth level for the Selecao in years gone by. He is clearly seen as a star in the making by caretaker boss Fernando Diniz and will be hoping to make his international debut in their upcoming World Cup qualifiers against Colombia and Argentina.

Chelsea, meanwhile, will be left to wonder what might have been if Endrick had decided to join them over Real Madrid at the end of last year. It seems inevitable that he will go on to become one of the world’s best players if he continues to develop at his current rate, although it will be Los Blancos reaping the benefits instead of the Blues.

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