News from Sweden this morning has picked up Chelsea’s first academy scholarship signing for next summer from overseas. It arrives in the form of Swedish 16 year-old midfielder Amin Affane, who has signed a three-year deal to begin in July.
The deal was revealed by the player’s agent, Adnan Huseincehajic, who described the move as ‘absolutely right’ before expanding upon his comments.
“(Amin) has had a number of Premier League clubs after him, as well as a Dutch team. Then there was also three of Sweden’s biggest clubs in contact. But, in all honesty, it had always been Chelsea from an early stage. They have been as professional as you would hope and expect of a team of their stature.
It’s wonderful that he gets this chance, he has worked hard for it and deserves this contract. Despite his young age, he is very talented and now he will be able to give himself the chance to achieve his great potential.”
So what do we know about Affane? He’s 168cm and 63kg, having turned 16 in late January. A left-footed attacking midfielder with a crafty mind and good vision, he understands the game well and has a good set of physical attributes for his size. He joins from local side Lärje/Angereds IF and has admired Lionel Messi and Steven Gerrard, obviously something which can be worked out of him when he arrives in London.
He becomes the second Swede in the youth setup, following in the steps of Marko Mitrovic. The only other Swede ever to represent Chelsea was Magnus Hedman, so it represents a bit of a departure from historical trends, but at the same time it shows a continuing faith from the academy in smaller, technically impressive players. Amin will join the youth team in the summer alongside what is expected to be a much smaller Under-16 intake than last year, and may well see further overseas arrivals.
On a brief aside, Aldi Haxhia has left the Chelsea academy with immediate effect. CFCnet wishes him all the best for his future endeavours.