Chelsea have reportedly joined Barcelona in the chase to sign highly-rated teen Atakan Akkaynak, currently contracted to Bayer Leverkusen.
According to Goal, Chelsea and Barcelona are taking a keen interest in Bayer Leverkusen teenager Atakan Akkaynak. The German Under-19 midfielder is reportedly on the radar of AS Roma as well as the clubs continue to scour for potential gems, despite the conclusion of the summer transfer window.
Atakan Akkaynak has been hailed as one of the brightest emerging talents in Germany. Often termed as a natural leader, the player has a rich history of the same, captaining the German Under-17 and Under-18 squads before being promoted to the Under-19s – he made his debut in a 0-0 draw against Switzerland.
The Bayer Leverkusen teen has captained the club at youth level as well. Akkaynak is also eligible to represent Turkey but seems destined to don the German shirt after rejecting the opportunity to represent the Crescent Stars.
The midfielder has been on Barcelona’s radar for over a year now, with the Catalans on a continuous scouting mission to unearth gems from different corners of the world. But, the La Liga giants are not the only club taking a keen interest in the 18-year-old.
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Chelsea and AS Roma are also scouting the player, who is contracted to Bayer Leverkusen till 2019. After 84 matches for the club’s Under-17 and Under-19 side combined, the youngster is finally training with the first-team squad and is expected to make his senior debut in the 2017-18 campaign.
The interest in Atakan is justified considering the talent he possesses. The 18-year-old looks a natural ball-player and is ambidextrous to begin with, enabling him to escape clutch situations in the middle of the park with relative ease.
His game is also based on an overall impact, which includes both areas of the field and is considered one of the best up-and-coming box-to-box midfielder of his generation.
With the Bundesliga outfit since 2006, the player would hope to break through into the first-team setup this season and establish himself at the club. The likes of Barcelona, Chelsea and AS Roma, though, will lie in wait and will look to pounce on any window of opportunity to nab the player away from Leverkusen.
Germany already have an envious group of talented young players coming through and the rise of Atakan will add another budding talent to the ever-growing list of wonderkids to emanate from the country in recent times.