Barcelona confirmed the signing of 17-year-old Alen Halilović from Dinamo Zagreb earlier this week,
The 5ft 7ins attacking midfielder has drawn compliments from across Europe with his exciting displays. Already comparisons have been made by some between him, teammate Lionel Messi and compatriot Luka Modric.
It's easy to see why the comparisons with the great Messi are being made. Halilovic is left-footed, dribbles with the ball at incredible pace and can beat a man with ease. These talents haven't gone unnoticed at an international level, either.
He has already made three appearances for his country and became the youngest player to play for Croatia aged just 16 years and 357 days.
He very much fits the Barcelona mould: quick, intelligent and technically brilliant with the ball. With Xavi and Andres Iniesta both now into their 30s, this looks like a brilliant investment from the Blaugrana.
Paired with the promising Rafinha Alcantara in the centre of midfield, Barcelona's philosophy of keeping the ball and playing attractive football looks set to continue well into the future. Along with Gerard Deulofeu, Barcelona's production line of talent is unmatched and appears to be growing.
Looking at Barcelona's record regarding the development of youth players, this is the perfect place for him to grow. He will presumably start in the 'B' team - allowing him to develop without being rushed - and then move up to the first team.
Messi, Iniesta, Xavi, Thiago and Gerard Pique are just a few of the graduates from this world-renowned academy and Halilović will be trying to emulate them and make an impression on a global scale.
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