Feyenoord hopes to loose Bryan Gil from Tottenham Hotspur this transfer period. The 22-year-old left foot seems to be redundant in North London, so the Rotterdam team hopes to rent him until the end of this season. But who is this four-time international of LaRoja and what can he add to Feyenoord? Football zone figured it out!
By Wessel Antes
Bryan Gil Salvatierra was born on February 11, 2001 in L'Hospitalet de Llobregat, a small hospital in Barcelona, where former stars of the local FC such as Jordi Alba and Víctor Valdés were also born. Gil was born just two kilometers away from the legendary Camp Nou.
However, he spent his childhood on the other side of Spain. Little Gil moved to Andalusia at a young age with his parents and brother Sergio, where he grew up in the coastal town of Barbate, located in the province of Cádiz. There, Gil developed a love for football on the street, not knowing that dribbling on the squares of Barbate would take him this far.
Gil's parents believed it GOAL initially did not realize that he would ever become a professional footballer. The Spaniard was always one of the smallest players of his class and Gil had the habit of quickly lying down when he could not get past his opponents. Nevertheless, several local residents convinced Gil's parents to send their son to a football school, something that would later prove to be a golden move.
Gil was soon picked up there by a more professional football school, Barbate CF, where many boys dreamed of a rich playing career and playing for the Spanish national team. As a youth player for Barbate, Gil, the little dribbler with the long hair, was scouted by the big Sevilla at the age of eleven. However, the dire financial situation of the Gil family did not cooperate. Although his father worked multiple jobs, the Spanish crisis had a major impact on the family. This made a move to Seville, about 180 kilometers away, impossible.
Gil often had to fight against prejudice as a youth player because of his haircut and thin build.
Gil's father asked Sevilla for help and received a car from the club, with which he could drive his son back and forth four days a week. In conversation with The Guardian Sevilla youth coordinator Agustín López Páez reminisced about Gil in 2021. “He wasn't the fastest or most agile player at the time, but he had something wild in him. He seemed indomitable. That was something we never wanted to take away from him.”
By always playing against bigger and stronger players in training, Gil developed very quickly in Seville's youth academy. “He seemed to be flying with the ball,” said López Páez. Head of youth training Pablo Blanco also spoke about Gil to the English quality newspaper. “We saw in him the reincarnation of José Antonio Reyes, a technical left-footed winger who was not afraid of anyone.”
In 2018, Gil was rewarded with his first professional contract, after which he continued to live in his room in the Seville apartments. There he was offered a special diet to gain weight and become physically stronger. Although Barcelona and Manchester City would have loved to sign him, Gil had a clear mission: to repay Sevilla for everything the club has done for him.
It soon seemed that this would work, because Gil was only 17 years, 10 months and 26 days old when coach Pablo Machín let him make his debut in the main squad. In a home match against Atlético Madrid (1-1), Gil entered the field of Estadio Ramón Sánchez Pizjuán for the first time, replacing Wissam Ben Yedder. On April 25, 2019, Gil shot himself into the history books of LaLiga.
Thanks to a goal in the home match against Rayo Vallecano (5-0 win), Gil is the first player born in the 21st century to score at the highest level in Spain. A thrilling start, but a real breakthrough at Sevilla has not been achieved. Gil is also not involved on loan at CD Leganés. In sunny Spain he seemed to be snowed under in relegation football, until the left foot at SD Eibar completely changed sentiment a season later.
On April 25, 2019, Gil scored a historic goal in LaLiga.
While Gil had to make do with substitutes at Leganés, he received the confidence of Eibar coach José Luis Mendilibar. In 29 official matches for the club he scored 4 goals. He also delivers the same number of assists. As an Eibar loanee, Gil makes his debut under Luis Enrique in the Spanish national team, for which he has now played four international matches.
Although it is believed in Spain that Gil will return to Seville in the summer of 2021, Tottenham suddenly strikes. As a youth international, the left-footed player had been on the list of the English top club for years. The Spurs ultimately paid no less than 25 million euros to sign the promising Spaniard. Gil signs until mid-2026, but after a disappointing six months he is sent on loan to Valencia again, where he only scores once in seventeen matches.
Once back at Tottenham, Gil did not feature last season either. His performance in particular seems to be a major problem since switching to senior football. While the technician managed to score many goals as a youth, Gil only scored nine goals as a professional footballer. In addition, he only acted as a referee twelve times in 145 official matches. His numbers at Tottenham are actually typical: 40 games, 0 goals and 2 assists.
Yet Gil showed last season at Sevilla that he can be a useful player. In the second half of the season he was a frequently used force under his beloved teacher Mendilibar during a loan period at the old nest. Gil managed to add his first prize as a professional to his list of achievements last year at his childhood sweetheart Sevilla. The Spanish sub-star managed to win the Europa League in Budapest by beating AS Roma on penalties. Gil had a starting place during the final, but was substituted at halftime.
This season Gil is again having a hard time at Tottenham. The versatile Spaniard only played 207 minutes under manager Ange Postecoglou, spread over nine appearances. It should be mentioned that Gil had to miss the start of the season due to an injury. In the last few games, the winger has mainly come as a substitute for Tottenham. This season Gil has not yet managed to score or provide any assists.
Gil's employment at Tottenham has not been a success so far.
However, Postecoglou spoke positively about Gil earlier this season on Tottenham's club website. “He can be very important for us. He is a nice boy to work with and has all the qualities to play on the wings at Tottenham. He finds himself in the same situation as the rest of his teammates. He is going to get an opportunity and then it is up to him what he does with it.”
Now the question is whether Tottenham are interested in Gil, who according to… Transfer market is worth 16 million euros, to be stored at Feyenoord. Transfer market expert Fabrizio Romano confirmed the news of 1908.nl that the Rotterdammers are doing everything they can to convince Tottenham. The Rotterdam medium estimates the chance of Gil's arrival at around 40 percent. Gianluca Di Marzio previously reported that Fiorentina is also eyeing a loan deal with The Spursso it remains to be seen where the Spaniard will end up.
In terms of type of player, Arne Slot could add a new flavor to his selection with Gil. The Spanish ball wizard can play on the right and left flank, but has also played as an attacking midfielder in the past. Barcelona scout Mani has spoken highly of Gil in the past. “At the moment he is the best young player from Spain,” he said in February 2021 Cadena SER.
“I like to compare him with Neymar in terms of playing style. Bryan can do special things on the ball and is very versatile, because he can also play as a midfielder or as an attacking back. It is impressive what he shows,” said Mani. Gil himself is more likely to see comparisons with another player, as shown in an old interview with El Laguero.
“Neymar is one of my favorite football players, so something like that is of course very nice. But when you read that you think: Oh dear… I don't think I can be compared to anyone yet, but if you want to hear a name, I would rather think of Ángel Di María. Because he is also skinny and left-footed.”
If Gil comes to Feyenoord in the coming weeks, he seems to have to focus on the right winger position in South Rotterdam. Alireza Jahanbaksh (Iran) and Yankuba Minteh (Gambia) have international commitments until mid-February, so the arrival of an extra attacker does not seem superfluous. Gil is not extremely fast and does not have a sensational passing movement, but is a lot further ahead than his possible competitors on a technical level and in combination play.
Whether Gil is a viable alternative to Jahanbakhsh and Minteh will become clear in the coming days. In any case, the Catalan can make himself immortal in South Rotterdam if he can contribute to winning the Europa League, just like last year. Gil certainly knows what it is like to beat Roma, Feyenoord's upcoming opponent, in the prestigious European tournament.
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