Alexandre Pato was spoken about as a footballing phenomenon when he burst onto the scene with Internacional during the mid-2000s.
The Brazilian striker was being hailed as a future world beater from the very first days of his professional career and it was Italian giants AC Milan who brought him to Europe in 2007, forking out €24 million for the then 17-year-old.
Pato enjoyed a reasonably decent first campaign with the Rossoneri, scoring nine goals in 20 appearances, and went on to bag 18 goals in all competitions the season after that.
However, a combination of ultimately injuries and off-field distractions saw Pato’s form spiral and in 2013 he returned to Brazilian football with his tail between his legs, signing for Corinthians.
Pato’s move back to his home country also coincided with the end of his international career. Now 29, the former wonderkid made the last of his 27 international appearances for Brazil six years ago.
Pato briefly retuned to Europe, playing for Chelsea and Villarreal in 2015 and 2016, respectively - but failed to make an impact.
Then, in 2017, he accepted a lucrative offer from Chinese Super League outfit Tianjin Quanjian.
Considering the extraordinary talent and potential he possessed as a teenager, it’s fair to say that Pato’s career has been something of a disappointment.
He was expected to be ripping it up in the Champions League during his peaks years, not destroying the Chinese Super League.
But that’s exactly what’s been happening over the past couple of years.
A video was uploaded to YouTube earlier this month titled ‘Alexandre Pato is way too good for the Chinese Super League…’ and it’s already amassed over two millions views.
It shows Pato looking positively Messi-esque over in China, embarrassing opponents for fun and scoring worldies.
Watch it here...
When you think back to how poor he looked at Chelsea in the Premier League just a few years ago, the video of Pato at Tianjin Quanjian says an awful lot about the standard of football in the Chinese Super League.
Pato has scored 36 goals in 60 games for his current employers - an average of just over a goal every other game - and is clearly enjoying himself.
It must feel like he’s the best kid in the school playground again.News Now - Sport News