Chelsea spotted 'incredible' youngster before he became a star

Report: Chelsea spotted 'incredible' youngster before he became a star, now he's on the verge of a big transfer

Chelsea reportedly identified Karim Adeyemi ahead of his major breakthrough in European football.

According to Goal, the Blues sent scouts to watch the current RB Salzburg striker whilst he was playing for Unterhaching.

Photo by Andreas Schaad – FC Red Bull Salzburg/FC Red Bull Salzburg via Getty Images

Where has Adeyemi come from?

Adeyemi had originally been part of Bayern Munich’s academy, yet they released the attacker due to punctuality reasons.

He remained in Munich with Unterhaching, where Chelsea originally discovered his talents.

“When he was 16, some clubs from England wanted to sign him. For example, some scouts from Chelsea came, but I don’t know if that would have worked out,” revealed the club’s president, Manfred Schwabl.

The Athletic also assert that Adeyemi, his family and Schwabl were invited to spend a week at Cobham.

All three parties decided life in London was not the best step for his development.   

Instead, the then-teenager joined Salzburg for £2.9m (Goal).

Photo by TF-Images/Getty Images

A star with Salzburg

After a brief spell in the youth side, sandwiched by two loan spells with Austrian minors Liefering, Adeyemi eventually arrived at the first team doorstep.

Since his debut in 2020, the 20-year-old has made 79 appearances for Salzburg, scoring 28 times.

He is already on 18 for the season, including three in the Champions League, two of those against Chelsea’s next European opponent, Lille.

Clearly, the Blues saw this epic rise coming a mile off, but so did Janusz Gora, a youth coach at Salzburg and Liefering.

“You could immediately see that he was special, an incredible talent, fast, good technique, explosive on the ball,” explained Gora.

“Even though he played against grown men with Liefering, he was the sort of player who decided games, with a goal or an assist. As a coach, you knew there was something about this kid.”

Now, the whole of the continent knows about ‘this kid’, as he prepares to face Bayern in the Champions League later this evening.

Photo by KRUGFOTO/APA/AFP via Getty Images

Borussia Dortmund in particular are aware of his capability, as they apparently lead the race to sign his sort-after signature, despite Liverpool also sniffing around.

Another one Chelsea let slip through the net.  

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"Nathaniel is a football journalist who graduated from the University of Derby. He worked at Burton Albion as part of their media team for two years. Nathaniel produced regular articles for the club’s official website and match-day programme. He covered the 2018 U20 Women’s World Cup in Brittany and has reported from grounds ranging from non-league up to the Premier League. Nathaniel is a full-time writer for the Chelsea Chronicle, and was formerly their social media man. His footballing career reached the sparkling heights of winning the Under-13s Bloxham Tournament in 2011."