In the recent times, Ruben Neves has been making news in the football world. A number of European football clubs have set their eyes on the FC Porto midfielder. The midfielder is expected to impress potential suitors in the Chelsea versus FC Porto game, which is scheduled to be held in Dragao. Ruben grew up in the town of Mezelos, which is south of Porto. The staunch Porto fan joined the club’s academy when he was eight years old. He greatly impressed his coaches, managers and other team members with his football skills and maturity levels.
Neves played for a season in the under 17’s team before being picked to play for the first team by Coach Julen Lopetegui. He was able to skip the under 19s team and the B team, heading straight to the main team. Even as a 17 year old, Neves continued to impress the management during training and was part of the nine starting players for Porto’s league opener match against Maritimo. The game was a huge win to the team and particularly, to Neves who was the man of the match. Neves also made history by becoming Porto’s youngest league goal scorer when he scored the opening goal.
Neves skills were eminent not only in the opening match but he went on to play a good game against Lille during the Champions League qualifiers. Ruben’s brilliant performances started to catch the eye of other clubs. Juventus, Liverpool and Atletico Madrid are some of the leading football clubs among many other clubs that have plans of getting the player’s signature. Porto decided to offer Neves a new contract that had a release clause of 40 million pounds. Neves might not have been a regular starter during the duration but the opportunity of featuring as a starter in a number of games shows how vital he is to the team.
Ruben featured in the Portugal under 21 team for the European championship as a substitute against the England team. Prior to the game, he had featured in the Portugal under 17s team, where Coach Julen Lopetegui first spotted his talents. The national coach of the Portuguese team, Fernando Santos, is monitoring the progress of Ruben hoping he will make it to the national team. Neves is a gifted midfielder who has a good passing range and enough composure to make excellent decisions during possession. His football skills have seen him being compared to Sergio Busquets, the Barcelona player. His intelligent positioning enables him to intercept opposition attacks. Like any other player, Neves has shown weaknesses in selecting shots and targeting specific opponents.
His tackling tactics are competitive and strong. Neves does not disappoint when he is needed to take up the challenge. His positioning puts him in the forefront of picking up possessions from opponent interception. Neves is tall, well built and is able to handle long balls. His rapid and precise diagonal moves make his passing exceptionally great. He is able to comprehend what move to take once he is in possession of the ball. Neves does not crumble under pressure. In tight spots, he can maneuver the ball from opponents easily. Despite having a weak left foot, he can still receive the ball with the same foot.
Neves is a team player and is always alert in games. He communicates with his teammates during the games and makes decisions based on what is right for the team member. His positioning is vital for the team as he usually diverts opponent passes from their intended targets. In his current career, Neves does not get enough forwards to prompt him to be a regular scorer but given the chance, he could do quite more for the team. Some experts believe that Ruben’s success should not come as a surprise. Those who have worked with him can attest that he is a leader and the next Sergio Busquets. His positioning and playing skills show that he is the player worth watching. He broke Christiano Ronaldo’s record of being the youngest Portuguese player to play in the Champions League. Neves is also the youngest player to feature in ten games within a European League.
Neves is quite young. His age gives him the opportunity to hone and refine his skills. His exposure in the Championship and National games will come in handy and will prepare him for future assignments at the club level and for his national team. Even with a myriad of teams interested in him, Neves maintains that he is a Porto supporter and sees himself being in the team for a while before moving to other clubs. He maintains highest levels of discipline on and off the pitch. His philosophy of hard work will enable him to leave a legacy in the football history.
His current focus is on the impending game between FC Porto and Chelsea where he is expected to play. Like any upcoming player, he occasionally feels not prepared to take up different challenges. However, these fleeting thoughts are not a hindrance to his steadily growing career.
To be compared with Sergio Busquets is a positive step in his career even if he is still not at the highest peak of his career. This comparison will help him have a smooth transition from the defense position to the attack position. This transition will show competitors and potential scouts what Neves is capable of and why he should not be underestimated.