Eduardo Camavinga is considered to be one of the most exciting talents in world football and is likely to move to a top club in the summer, and FC Bayern Munich should also be interested. Who is the 18-year-old Rennes midfielder and what sets him apart?
When Eduardo Camavinga was ten years old, he saw the flames destroy his family’s home-built house, and with it all their possessions. “I remember the fire like it was yesterday,” he said in an interview with the newspaper Ouest-France. “I went to school and saw the firefighters coming through the window. I saw the damage with my own eyes, the burned down house.”
After an emergency shelter was found, his father turned to his son and said a sentence that Camavinga can still quote precisely: “Eduardo, you are the family’s hope, you have to sort it out!” He is now 18 and you can definitely say that he is making good progress with the rules.
At the age of 16, the midfielder earned a regular place at Stade Rennes, led his team to third place in Ligue 1 and thus for the first time in the Champions League. Last autumn Camavinga became the youngest French international since World War I, and he may also make it into the squad for the upcoming European Championship.
All top international clubs have long since noticed Camavinga. “Real are one of the four or five clubs in the world he could join,” said his agent Jonathan Barnett earlier this year SPOX and goal. One of the others is probably FC Bayern Munich. Recently reported Cadena Ser and France Footballthat sports director Hasan Salihamidzic in particular would try to get Camavinga and initial discussions had already taken place.
FC Bayern and Real Madrid interested in Eduardo Camavinga
Camavinga is unlikely to extend his contract with Rennes, which expires in 2022. So if his training club still wants to make money for him – and he will definitely want to – then he will have to sell him in the coming summer. A transfer fee in the range of 50 million euros is traded. Such a transfer would be the temporary culmination of a rather insane path in life.
Camavinga was born in a refugee camp in Angola in 2002; his parents had previously fled the Congo. In the following year, the family made it to France, initially living in Amiens and Lille, for a short time even on the streets, before moving to the small town of Fougeres near Rennes. There she made her home and built a house, for the first time since his birth Camavinga lived in a real home. Then the flames came and after they had destroyed everything finally the expectations of the third of six children.
The difficult childhood and all the pressures placed on him do not seem to have broken Camavinga. No, they seem to have made him stronger. “No player on the team smiles as much as he does. You can literally see that he loves life,” says journalist Florent Bibiloni, who works for the local newspaper Ouest-France reported on Stade Rennes, in conversation with SPOX and goal. “He gets on well with everyone in the team. After wins, he’s the one who starts singing in the dressing room.”
When he was eleven, Camavinga got a place in the Rennes Academy, which has an exceptionally good reputation in France: Sylvain Wiltord, Yoann Gourcuff, Ousmane Dembele – now Eduardo Camavinga. “He’s humble and has just as much respect for the caretaker as he does for the head coach,” recalls Landry Chauvin, who was the head of the academy at the time SPOX and goal. In spring 2019, Camavinga made his debut for the professionals at the age of 16 years, four months and 27 days and has since secured his regular place in the midfield.
Camavinga was assigned a new tactical role by Stephan at the beginning of the season: If he was usually asked as part of a double six up until then, he slipped a bit forward because of a system change and now acts in a 4-3-3 or 4-1-4-1 mostly eighth in front of the experienced Steven Nzonzi (32).
In this position, his expandable shot and his generally lack of goal danger are more significant than on the six (in total Camavinga was only directly involved in seven goals in 79 competitive games). In addition, many opponents have adjusted to the fact that he can fit much better and more precisely with his strong left foot than with his right.
Eduardo Camavinga? “He throws himself into duels like an animal”
Even so, Camavinga continues to get what is most important for a young talent: regular match practice. In Europe’s top 5 leagues so far, with Arsenal’s Bukayo Saka, only one teenager has played more minutes than Camavinga.