Football Index

Vinicius Vindicating The Hype


July 2018 and a barely 18-year-old Vinicius Junior had just signed for Real Madrid for an astronomical fee reported to be worth in excess of £50million. Madrid had long been kicking themselves for missing out on Neymar (£19.06) who instead opted to join Barcelona back in 2013 and now 5 years later, they finally looked to have outdone their fierce Spanish rivals in winning Vinicius Junior’s signature. The Brazilian wonderkid had been regarded as a very raw talent, with an exception ceiling of potential. He had already impressed for the Brazil under 17 side (with a phenomenal record of 17 goals in 19 games) but, his first-team action at Flamengo was still limited when Madrid made the decision to cough up the big bucks to get their man.

Since signing for Madrid in the summer, it has taken time for Vinicius to establish himself and, under previous coach Julien Lopetegui, he found his playing time limited to the Madrid second tier Castilla side. Despite a great goal record for Castilla, Vinicius found it difficult to gain any real first-team experience during the early period of the season.

However, since Santiago Solari has taken the helm over in Madrid, it’s been nothing but an upward curve for Vincius both on the pitch and on Football Index. Vinicius has grabbed the bull by the horns and he is very quickly becoming the talk of the town at the Spanish capital. The Brazilian followed up his stellar performance during the 3-0 win over Leganes with another great display last night against Real Betis. During the match, his explosive pace and energy proved to be a vital asset in guiding Madrid to a late 2-1 victory and although he didn’t get on the scoresheet, his ability to wreak havoc in the opposition defence is becoming a more and more regular occurrence.

Vinicius’ performances haven’t gone unnoticed on the Index and his graph over the last month is a thing of true beauty. Having been available for as low as £5.60 barely a week ago, Vinicius has now been subject to an increase of £2.67 in just one week. Not only is Vinicius performing well on the pitch, but from a Media point of view, he could prove to be an even more valuable asset. It does seem that the Brazilian has a somewhat questionable disciplinary record, having already picked up a red card for diving in a Castilla match. His penchant for controversy flared up again last night, as an argument between Vinicius and Betis defender Marc Bartra (£2.39) was caught on camera.

He has only been in Europe for barely half a season, but already the early signs for Vinicius are very promising. Considering he seems to be growing in confidence as each game goes by, coupled with a tendency to attract attention for the wrong reasons, it’s no surprise to have seen his price skyrocket recently. Young talents are always being hyped up by the media, but every now and then a talent comes along that makes you sit up and take notice and when it comes to Vinicius Junior, it really does look like we had all better start believing the hype.

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Football Index

Wednesday 16th January 2019 IPOs

Footballer Position Club Price Time Guide
Josh Maja Forward Sunderland £0.80 10:00 – 12:00
Glenn Middleton Midfielder Rangers £0.70 10:00 – 12:00
Yoel Armougom Defender Caen £0.60 10:00 – 12:00
Valery Fernandez Forward Girona £0.80 10:00 – 12:00
Roberto Lopez Midfielder Real Sociedad £0.80 10:00 – 12:00
Rafael Camacho Midfielder Liverpool £1.20 12:00 – 14:00
Arturo Calabresi Defender Bologna £0.70 12:00 – 14:00
Mattias Svanberg Midfielder Bologna £0.70 12:00 – 14:00
Abdulkadir Omur Midfielder Trabzonspor £1.30 12:00 – 14:00
Benoit Badiashile Defender AS Monaco £1.00 12:00 – 14:00
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Football Index

System Update


There will be a new system update tomorrow morning. In order for the update to be completed, trading will be temporarily suspended between 08:00 (GMT) and 10:00 (GMT) on 15/01/2019. This includes actions such as buying, selling and cancelling sell orders.

In addition, during this 2 hour period you will be unable to deposit and withdraw from your Football Index Account.

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Rashford and Pogba Thriving Under Ole’s Tutelage


Manchester United’s fans well and truly got their Christmas wishes answered by Santa this year with the clubs dismissal of Jose Mourinho as manager on the 18th December. The Red Devils hierarchy turned to former fans favourite and Molde manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to take interim charge until the end of the season and the transformation has been nothing short of scintillating as they currently top the form table alongside Liverpool with fifteen points out of a possible eighteen in the last six matches. Central to this upsurge in form appears to be a loosening of the defensive shackles employed by the Special One, that has seen the likes of Marcus Rashford  (£9.64) and Paul Pogba (£16.44) unleashed on the opposition.

It was often argued that Marcus Rashford’s development was being hindered by Jose Mourinho’s tactics where he would often find himself playing wide left rather than in his preferred position of straight through the middle. Ever since the appointment of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer as interim manager, the Norwegian has thrust Rashford straight into his preferred central striking position and has immediately reaped the benefits. The young England forward has plundered four goals and an assist since the former super sub Solskjaer has taken over the reins at Old Trafford and has firmly demoted £90 Million man Romelu Lukaku (£4.53) to a supporting role from the bench only in recent times.

This can only be an exciting development for Gareth Southgate and England fans. But the upsurge in form hasn’t gone underappreciated on the Football Index either. Just seven days ago Rashford was available at a price of £8.34 a share, yet as of this morning he is up a humongous £1.26 a share. That represents a rise of 15% in a matter of days. The catalyst for the rise is undoubtedly his strike against Tottenham Hotspur at Wembley yesterday as the game-winning goal in the 1-0 victory witnessed his price £0.91 alone.

Another player who has been transformed under Solskjaer’s tutelage has been firm Index favourite, Paul Pogba. In the immediate aftermath of the news that Mourinho had been dismissed by Ed Woodward, Pogba’s price actually tumbled with traders fearing that the media’s obsession with the relationship between Pogba and Mourinho would dissipate, but it is actually his football that is now setting tongues and Index’s portfolios wagging. A stunning assist for Rashford’s decisive goal yesterday means that he has now scored on four occasions and assisted on a further four since the Norwegian’s appointment and the media quite simply hasn’t stopped talking about the Frenchman. Since Mourinho’s departure he has collected £0.68 in Media Dividends alone. It is therefore little surprise that his price has rocketed from lows of £11.75 in the last month, up by £4.55 a share. Phenomenal growth.

The huge upturn in form of Manachester United under Solskjaer’s guidance in making waves in football as they gun for the a top 4 slot in the Premier League but it is also having a massive impact on Football Index. Did you get on either Rashford or Pogba?

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Ligue 1 – Underrated Team of the Season


Ligue 1 is back underway after a three-week break over Christmas, with Paris Saint-Germain romping away from the chasing pack, who have been unable to mount even a meek protest against the capital side’s dominance.

It has been an unusual season in that many of the familiar forces, such as Lyon, Marseille and especially Monaco, have struggled to gain any degree of positive momentum, leaving them floundering in the Champions League race – or in the principality side’s case, worse.

Nevertheless, there have been impressive performances from elsewhere in French football’s top flight.

Here are the unheralded heroes from the first half of the season, selected from teams who failed to qualify for Europe this term, with obvious star candidates like Lille pair Nicolas Pepe and Jonathan Bamba, who have been readily associated with big moves throughout this season.

GK: Walter Benitez (Nice, £0.69)


Started the season as second choice but is now very much the go-to play for Patrick Vieira between the sticks. Has conceded only 11 goals in 15 appearances and has been a linchpin for a Nice outfit that has leaned heavily on its defensive strength this season.

RB: Kenny Lala (Strasbourg, £1.38)

No defender in Europe’s big five leagues can boast offensive numbers like former Lens man Lala. He has an incredible six assists to his name in only 17 matches and has three goals to boot. Has recently talked up his chances of getting into the France squad and has been linked with a move to Lyon.


CB: Younes Abdelhamid (Reims, to be IPO’d)


Reims boast one of the best defensive records in Ligue 1 and the 31-year-old centre-back has typified why they have been so strong. Has organised well and has barely put a foot wrong, having played every minute of every match.


CB: Daniel Congre (Montpellier, to be IPO’d)

Montpellier’s defensive strength is the main reason they enjoyed such a strong start to the season. Alongside partners Hilton and Pedro Mendes, Congre has been a reliable figure in the heart of the back five, which is renowned as one of the best in the country.

LB: Fode Ballo-Toure (Lille/Monaco, £0.91)

Made a simply awful start to life in Lille under Marcelo Bielsa but has recovered impressively this season and has earned a move to Monaco, where he will finish the season. While much of the focus on Lille has fallen on on Pepe and Bamba, they have been strong in defence and the left-back was one of their standouts.

CM: Romain Amalfitano (Dijon, £0.50)

It’s been a difficult season for Dijon, but the performances of former Newcastle man Amalfitano have been impressive. He does not have a goal or assist to his name, but he has been asked to play in numerous different roles and has performed them all to a high level.

CM: Damien Le Tallec (Montpellier, £0.76)

Signed in the summer as a utility player who was not necessarily expected to start, the brother of former Liverpool player Anthony is making a name for himself in France in his own right. Currently occupies a defensive midfield role and has been playing it impressively week after week.

CM : Teji Savanier (Nimes, £1.86)

The 27-year-old is experiencing Ligue 1 for the first time this season, but from his performances it is impossible to tell. Has two goals, including one against PSG, and five assists for newly promoted Nimes and these figures would be better if he had not been dismissed against the league leaders and handed a five-game ban.

LM: Flavien Tait (Angers, £1.20)

Over the last couple of years, the winger has gone about his work quietly but very effectively. This season has been little different for a man who will turn 26 next month. Has six assists his name and two goals and is remarkably underappreciated for an attacking player who has been in good form for around a year now.

ST: Emiliano Sala (Nantes, £1.78)

Undoubtedly the revelation of the season in Ligue 1, Sala was expected to work hard and chip in with semi-frequent goals for Nantes, yet at the halfway point of the season he has 12 to his name. A €20 million price tag has been placed on his shoulders, but given his history that seems a risk.

RM: Wahbi Khazri (Saint-Etienne, £1.37)

Had been expected to stay with Rennes in the summer but eventually moved to Saint-Etienne, where he has established himself as the undoubted leader of their attack, often playing as a false 9. Boasts nine goals and two assists in only 16 Ligue 1 appearances.



Edouard Mendy (Reims, £0.71)

Ruben Aguilar (Montpellier,£0.92)

Jose Fonte (Lille, £0.39)

Ismael Traore (Angers, to be IPO’d)

Eddy Gnahore (Amiens, to be IPO’d)

Andy Delort (Montpellier, £1.18)

Max Gradel (Toulouse, £1.27)

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Europe’s Biggest Clubs On Icardi Alert


It’s hard to believe that this season marks the first time in which Inter striker Mauro Icardi (£4.29) has ever played in the Champions League, such has been the furore surrounding his talent since he moved to San Siro from Sampdoria at the beginning of the 2013/14 campaign. The Nerazzurri qualified on the final day of last season, entering for the first time since 2011/12, but would exit at the group stage thanks to a 2-1 loss to PSV Eindhoven.

That initial sortie into Europe’s most prestigious knockout competition would see Icardi return to Camp Nou for the first time in his professional career, since he spent three years in the Blaugrana youth sector between 2008 and 2011. However, progress since then in his trademark deadly marksmanship has led to him continually linked with top teams both at home and abroad.

“I’m fine at Inter,” declared the Argentine to La Gazzetta dello Sport before that aforementioned match with Barcelona. “I’ve no intention of going away. Me and my family are fine in Milan. I want to reach my goals and I want to give my contribution to improve the image of Inter. I’m the captain of this team and I want to fight for these colours. That’s why I’ve never thought of moving away, despite the offers that I’ve received and that I will receive.”

This all paints a rosy picture. Yet there have been a number of off-field incidents that have tainted Icardi’s tenure as club Captain, including a £90,000 fine issued by the club this week as the striker reported back late for training after the holidays.

Another bone of contention is his wife and agent Wanda Nara. Reports in the Italian press have suggested that the Nerazzurri hierarchy have suggested that Icardi seeks new representation after she caused alarm with both comments in the press and risque videos of herself posted on social media. “It’ll always be Wanda Icardi who takes care of my and our interests until the end of my career,” the player tweeted in response to those claims.

Seemingly – *ahem* – unwilling to leave anything to the imagination, Nara herself broached the subject of a contract renewal that has completely stalled in the press this week.

“We’re far from reaching an agreement,” she told AS. “The figures being talked about in Italy aren’t true and we haven’t received a satisfactory proposal from Inter yet. I won’t deny that we can reach an agreement, but right now we’re very far apart. It’s not logical to renew Mauro’s contract for the amount he currently earns.

“We believe Mauro is worth more than that. There are some very important clubs interested in signing him. For example, there are the two biggest clubs in Spain, with whom we have excellent relationships, plus an English team and a French one.”

Her hints over which clubs are showing interest are typically unsubtle, and it doesn’t take a genius to deduce that Real Madrid, Barcelona, PSG and either Chelsea or Manchester United make up this list after what has already been reported in the press.

But is this for real, or is it a high-stakes bluff to force Inter into offering more money?

It’s currently hard to tell, but it certainly seems like this is the closest Icardi has ever come to choosing to leave Inter, and the interested parties will be watching how this plays out in order to bag a striker who is one of the best available in terms of shooting accuracy.

However, this saga concludes, you are bound to hear and see every part of the negotiation thanks to the inimitable Wanda Nara, who somehow manages to overshadow her husband’s brilliant play with off-field drama.

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Five Realistic Defensive Signings For Arsenal


It goes without saying that Arsenal need to sign a new defender this month. Whilst the Gunners have been scoring plenty, they’ve been letting far too many in and Unai Emery is well aware of this problem.

In this article I look at 5 realistic defensive signings the club could make this month.


1 – Kostas Manolas £1.77

The Greek defender has a release clause of €36million, an amount that is not out of the Gunners price range and also cheap in the current market for a player of his quality. Manchester United have been linked in recent weeks, but his release clause presents a perfect opportunity for Arsenal to address their defensive issues, if of course, the player wants to make the move. Whilst not bad in possession, a concern for Emery though would be that the player is not the best at playing out from the back.

2 – Malang Sarr £1.79

Sarr is set to become one of the very best defenders in Europe. Whilst he may not be cheap now, the teenagers price is only heading one way. Aged 19, he is already one of Nice’s most important places, starting consistently. He’s also very good on the ball and known for his ability to play out from the back. Could Patrick Vieira, the current Nice manager, do Arsenal a favour here? I think he’d be a fantastic signing, young, but capable of hitting the ground running due to the amount of first team exposure he has already had.

3 – Daniele Rugani £1.34

Rugani is a player Arsenal have been keen on signing for some time, but Juventus have held firm as they appear to view the 24-year-old as heir to some of their more experienced defenders. However the Italian very rarely features in the first team and for someone of his age, he needs to be playing regularly. With just 4 league games to his name this term, Arsenal could possibly tempt the club and player with a bid this month. He’s well suited to Emery’s style of the play, very good on the ball – averaging a 92.4% pass success rate this season.

4 – Mehdi Benatia £1.26

Not the ideal solution, but if money is really limited as reports indicate then the Moroccan defender could be an appropriate solution. The 31-year-old would offer a big physical presence to the team as well as adding a good amount of experience. Some reports have suggested Benatia could be part of a deal that sees Aaron Ramsey join Juventus this month. With Koscielny and Sokratis already at the club though, I would prefer to see a younger player arrive.

5 – Diego Godin £1.23

With the Spaniard struggling to agree a new contract at Atletico, the Gunners could pounce to sign the experienced Uruguayan defender. He may be 32, but Godin would certainly offer an upgrade on the club’s current defensive options and on a 2 and a half year deal he could be a shrewd signing. Technically the Gunners could sign Godin on a pre-contract agreement now to see him arrive for free in the summer, however, Unai Emery will want a defender now and so a small settlement fee could possibly be agreed with Atletico to make the move happen early. It seems Inter Milan may have already won the race for this one, though.

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Real Madrid’s Current Problems


Progress after the departure of Zinedine Zidane was always going to be tough for Real Madrid. Although the Frenchman didn’t rely on tactical intricacies or a pioneering philosophy to win trophies in the Spanish capital, his presence and command of a difficult dressing room has been tough to replace.

Julen Lopetegui was appointed in the summer, an experienced coach within Spain’s youth ranks, with the aim being a tactical revolution for a young squad. Club president Florentino Perez had sourced a range of home-grown talents to be placed at Lopetegui’s disposal, but the ex-Porto boss was not afforded the time to put the building blocks in place.

His sacking after an embarrassing performance in El Clasico led to the promotion of Santiago Solari from within the club’s own set-up. Despite getting a positive reaction at first, merely through allowing Real Madrid’s players to enjoy themselves and trust in their own ability as they had done under Zidane, it hasn’t taken long for Los Blancos to plateau once more. Though there is a wide range of issues, three stand out above all else after the club’s most recent disastrous performance.

Reliance on Vinicius Jr (£6.82)

What became painfully obviously during Real Madrid’s recent 2-0 defeat at the hands of Real Sociedad, was that one of the world’s biggest clubs was relying on the talents of an 18-year-old. Not a teenager who had proven himself a match winner in the past, nor one with solid foundations at Real Madrid, but one who has been juggled between first and B team this campaign.

Vinicius is incredibly talented, but should not be asked to shoulder such a large burden so early in his career in Spain. In a squad that boasts Karim Benzema, Isco, Lucas Vazquez and Dani Ceballos as midfield or forward presences, the young Brazilian needn’t be the only player to look dangerous in the final third as he was last weekend.

The signing of Brahim Diaz from Manchester City will offer another fit and confident option to Solari’s creative arsenal, but with Marco Asensio and Gareth Bale struggling due to injury, Real Madrid are looking light in wide areas. Vinicius can beat players in one-on-one situations and was a menace when cutting inside against Real Sociedad – but his introduction to the first-team picture should not have to be so demanding.

Lacking striking competition

Scoring seven goals in his opening 18 league appearances, Karim Benzema (£2.11) has already bettered his LaLiga tally of five during 2017/18. Seven goals for a team that has title ambitions in the post-Cristiano Ronaldo era, however, is nowhere even close to being good enough.

Benzema helped to bring the best out of those around him in campaigns gone by, combining well with the likes of Ronaldo, Bale, Lucas Vazquez and Asensio, but when the collective is underperforming, it is rare that the Frenchman can grab the game by the scruff of the neck and turn it around with a game-defining moment.

Mariano Diaz was brought in as a second-choice striker in the summer, but has made just five league appearances due to injuries or technical decisions, while 21-year-old Cristo Gonzalez is expected to get some chances after working with Solari in the club’s B team. Frankly, there is nowhere near enough firepower to bridge the gap post-Ronaldo.

Fragility at left back

Marcelo is one of Real Madrid’s most creative outlets, all the way from left back. Last season saw the Brazilian produced six assists in LaLiga, as well as four in the Champions League, while 2016/17 witnessed Marcelo chip in with ten in the league alone. When Los Blancos are confident and playing on the front foot, there is scarcely a more dangerous left back in world football.

As it stands, the 30-year-old is a defensive liability. There have always been huge question marks about his defensive ability, but those criticism were easily overlooked due to the fact that his contributions in the final third were so profound. Yet to produce an assist this term, in no small part down to the fact that if the collective aren’t performing well he rarely has the chance to add the quality required to break a resilient opponent which is sitting deep, Marcelo is a luxury that Solari currently can’t afford.

Sergio Reguilon replaced Marcelo as a like-for-like change in a game in which Real Madrid were trailing against Real Sociedad. So often under Zidane, the Brazilian would pop up with a goal or a piece of skill to help unlock a sturdy door. As it stands, the left back is devoid of confidence and lacking any kind of presence on front foot – making his deficiencies on the back foot plainly obvious for a critical world to see. Young and inexperienced Reguilon may be the short-term solution until the squad get back on their feet.

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Five Serie A Players That WouldSuit A January Move To The Premier League


Serie A is once again a showcase for a plethora of talent, and it is somewhat inevitable that many end up being linked with a move to the cash-rich environment of the Premier League.

Here at Football Index, we have taken a look at five of those players that would suit a move to the English top-flight.

Nicolo Barella (Cagliari, £3.25)

“If I had to choose between Serie A and the Premier League, I’d go for England, because I like the way they approach the game,” reported Chelsea target Nicolo Barella told La Gazzetta dello Sport earlier this season. “Plus everyone there is just as irritable and prone to fouls as me!”

It’s true that the 21-year-old star is tough in the tackle and needs to work on his discipline but – a regular in the Cagliari side for the last two seasons – he possesses the kind of natural talent that lends itself to the EPL even more than the aforementioned tenacity.

Barella’s ability to win the ball back and turn defence into attack with crisp passing, excellent agility and keen ball control has earned him four caps in the senior Italy national team, with boss Roberto Mancini describing him as a “phenomenon”.

Milan Skriniar (Inter, £2.88)

Already on the radar of Manchester United as they search for quality reinforcements at centre-back, Milan Skriniar is certainly a player that would suit the demands of Premier League football. The calm and collected Slovakian has an excellent tactical awareness, thanks to his typically thorough Italian education on the subject at Sampdoria and now at San Siro.

Reports in the Italian press state that the defender has been offered a one-year extension to his current deal, but it remains to be seen whether he will accept or seek to pursue the very clear interest shown from some of Europe’s top sides.

Gonzalo Higuain (AC Milan, £2.70)

A return to working with Chelsea boss Maurizio Sarri would make perfect sense for Gonzalo Higuain. The current Milan striker broke the Serie A single season goalscoring record at Napoli under the tutelage of the Blues boss as he notched up 36 league strikes in 2015/16. A move would be complicated by the fact he is on loan at San Siro from Juventus, but the Stamford Bridge outfit sorely need an alternative to the misfiring Alvaro Morata.

“There’s no point following rumours and gossip,” declared a distinctly cheesed-off Rossoneri director Leonardo. “He is here right now. Seeing as he is here, he needs to get down and actually do something for this team.”

Alex Sandro (Juventus, £2.78)

Another player who has readily admitted a desire to play in the Premier League is Juventus left-back Alex Sandro. The Brazilian has just signed a contract extension with the Bianconeri, however his skills as a wing-back mean he is often linked with a move to England, and a big-money offer is never too far away.

Allan Napoli, (£1.56)

Paris Saint-Germain are the latest club said to be preparing a £90 million offer for Napoli midfielder Allan, the kind of fee which his current club would not likely be able to turn down. This 28-year-old does much of the hard graft in the centre of the park that allows others to take centre stage but also finished last season with four goals and five assists.

It is no surprise then, that Allan has been linked with a move to Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City, a place where he would feel right at home after working as a key part of Maurizio Sarri’s similarly precise system at Napoli.

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The Index is Booming


It’s certainly a great time to be a Football Index trader. With the Footie hitting new highs this week of 50,000, we witnessed yet another stunning day of frenzied trading yesterday.

We’re now a full week into the January transfer window and it seems that the daily rumour-mill is having a significant impact on the market. Monday’s big winner was Chelsea hotshot Callum Hudson-Odoi (£6.76) who has seen a whopping rise of £2.56 in the last 7days, as his protracted transfer saga to the Bundesliga continues to hog the headlines. Hudson-Odoi is currently leading the Media Rankings today, could he make it 2 wins in a week?

We’ve already seen the positive impact that moving to the Bundesliga has had on some of England’s young stars. Jadon Sancho (£9.17) is the current poster-boy for young English talent making the move abroad and he has been in remarkable form throughout this campaign for Dortmund. Sancho has seen a rise of 67p in the last 7 days and has broken the £9.00 barrier and although the Bundesliga doesn’t even kick off for another week, it looks as though there is no stopping Sancho at this moment of time. Just one month ago, Sancho was sitting at a price of £6.76. His recent surge in value represents an increase of 35.6% in just one month. When you consider the return you would have made if your money was sat in a bank, it’s little wonder so many people are seeing the light and jumping on the Football Index bandwagon.

Another young English star who has reaped the rewards of playing in Germany is Arsenal youngster Reiss Nelson (£4.21). The Hoffenheim loanee has already hit 6 goals in the league and is set to stay in Germany for the rest of the season. Having hit previous highs of £4.65, it wouldn’t be beyond the realms of possibility that he could hit this figure once again.

Looking at the market, it seems that traders are quickly taking a liking to Milan new boy Lucas Paqueta (£4.20). The Brazilian hotshot has been absolutely flying recently, whilst also posting growth figures of a  £1.16 rise over the past 7 days. The Brazilian has now completed his transfer to Milan for over £30million and the Milan fans (and traders) have every reason to be excited about what is in store with Paqueta. The Brazilian has already made a name for himself for being able to beat his marker with surging runs and tricky dribbling. Having managed 11 goals in the Brazilian league this season, Paqueta also has an eye for goal and we have seen in the past just how valuable attacking midfielders can be on the Index. With many hoping that Lucas Paqueta is the next in line to become an Index star, the early signs are certainly looking very bright for the Brazilian.

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