Senegal: Pape Daouda Diong, the 17-year-old colossus who will head to Chelsea


By: Manu Tournoux

Several weeks ago the U17 World Cup took place in Indonesia. The opportunity to see the future gems of tomorrow in this competition which saw Germany finally prevail over France in the final. For European teams, this competition is also an opportunity to observe or discover players who are rarely talked about in Europe and who we never see play. Obviously, this often concerns African selections and young talents who play in little-publicized clubs. In this sense, the Malian player Ibrahim Diarra, a real sensation of this U17 World Cup (5 goals, 4 assists) had caught the eye of FC Barcelona who has already assured his arrival at the end of 2024.

But this player trained in Mali is not the only one in this case. On the Senegal side, several players have made headlines. There is obviously Amara Diouf (15 years old), the country’s star, who is already making the whole of Europe salivate and who plays for the famous Génération Foot academy. The latter is promised to FC Metz when he turns 18. But other players have distinguished themselves and this is notably the case of the giant Pape Daouda Diongue. The powerful 17-year-old midfielder, already 1m90 tall, has impressed with his impact and his ability to impose his style in the midfield. To the point of cracking up Chelsea who will recruit him soon and are therefore banking on him for the years to come.

Chelsea did not hesitate for long

In recent days, the player who currently plays for AF Darou Salam was seen in the stands of Stanford Bridge to attend Chelsea’s match against Newcastle with another future recruit: Kendry Páez (16 years old). Chelsea, after having closely observed South America, is therefore attacking the African continent and does not seem to want to stop its strategy of stacking up the nuggets despite the numerous criticisms. The club’s scouts continue to offer several young profiles. As for the English press, we are already discussing the idea of ​​lending Pape Daouda Diong upon his arrival in London so as not to slow down his progress. Obviously, the name of Strasbourg, another club in the Blue&Co galaxy, is mentioned to potentially welcome him. Before the interest of the English club, his name was mainly mentioned on the side of Botola, Moroccan championship.

Either way, Chelsea have got their hands on a pretty impressive profile. Beyond his already imposing size, the native of Dakar is above all a technically very fine player. Trained in the same academy as Formose Mendy (Lorient) or Moustapha Mbow (Paris FC), the young midfielder, compared by some to Abou Diaby for his slender but gifted style with the ball, was outclassed twice in his training club for finding himself in the first team before he even turned 17. Proof of an already certain maturity. And if he will now have to gain a little more confidence, particularly on a physical level, he embodies a new golden generation on the Senegal side. And obviously, Chelsea is rubbing her hands now…

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