Santos' Rodrygo Not Expecting to Move to Real Madrid in January

Christopher Simpson@@CJSimpsonBRFeatured ColumnistDecember 6, 2018

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - SEPTEMBER 01: Rodrygo of Santos controls the ball during a match between Vasco da Gama and Santos as part of Brasileirao Series A 2018 at Maracana Stadium on September 01, 2018 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. (Photo by Buda Mendes/Getty Images)
Buda Mendes/Getty Images

Santos starlet Rodrygo does not believe he will be joining Real Madrid in the January transfer window. 

Per Goal's Sacha Pisani, Real agreed a deal with Santos earlier this year to sign him next summer for €43 million (£39.3 million).

Rodrygo turns 18 in January, but he isn't confident of the possibility of heading to the Santiago Bernabeu this winter.

He told Gazeta Esportiva (h/t Pisani): "I don't believe there is a chance I will leave for Madrid early. It's agreed that I'm going in July. That agreement is between Santos and Real Madrid.

He added: "I'm focused on Santos. When I get there, I will think about it. For the moment, I just want to stand out with Santos."

The teenager, who has mostly played on the left wing but has also been used through the middle and on the right, has contributed nine goals and three assists in 45 appearances for Santos.

His Copa Libertadores goal against Nacional in March made him the youngest goalscorer in competition history.

Football Talent Scout shared his stats from his first full season in Brazil's top flight:

As a reward for his first full campaign in senior football, Rodrygo came fourth in the voting for the inaugural Kopa Trophy:

He's not the first precocious talent Real have snapped up from Brazil. They recruited compatriot Vinicius Junior from Flamengo last summer, having agreed a deal with his club in 2017.

Los Blancos could use a spark in the final third following Cristiano Ronaldo's sale to Juventus in July, but a premature move to the Spanish capital would do Rodrygo little good.

Despite Real's need for attacking reinforcements, Rodrygo is still in the early stages of his career and isn't capable of injecting the quality they require.

As such, game time would be hard to come by, and he needs time on the pitch to continue his development.

Earning first-team minutes will be difficult enough after his arrival next summer. Bringing that forward would be of little benefit to any party.

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