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Silas Wamangituka to Chelsea? Barcelona? Why it's moving too fast for Paris FC superkid

Stamford Bridge? Anfield? The Nou Camp...? It's too soon, surely. Things are moving just too fast for Silas Wamangituka - the street footballer from Kinshasa...

How fast? Well, just consider that Wamangituka only signed pro terms with Paris FC - of Ligue 2 - in September. Yet, such has been his impact, scouts from the likes of Chelsea, Liverpool and Barcelona have been spotted at his games since Christmas.

Making Wamangituka's progress all the more remarkable is that his one full season in Europe was only achieved last year. And it was with fifth tier Ales. Yet today, the 19 year-old is a global name. Half of Ligue 1 are banging on the front door of Pierre Ferracci, the PFC president, eager to discuss terms. And from abroad, Wamangituka's agents are fielding enquiries from the world's biggest.

"It's really a great pleasure for me. These are clubs that I've watched when I was very small," says the 19 year-old. "The chance to play for a big club is important to me."

But surely this is all happening too fast? Certainly Ferracci is eager for everyone to calm down.

"Silas, we know, has very exceptional qualities," says Ferracci, a mover and shaker at the top of French society. "He is intelligent and is aware of his abilities. The staff and the players, like the management team, take care to protect him from the temptations, sometimes irrational and not disinteresting, which are created."

Indeed those "temptations" could also be levelled at PFC, though Ferracci is adamant there's no immediate plans to cash in on Wamangituka, despite his rising star.

"He has signed a professional contract of three years and I am convinced that by continuing his progression, with his qualities, he can score 20 goals next year in Ligue 2withParis FC."

Which is a belief shared by Olivier Belesi, Wamangituka's agent. Though describing Belesi as the striker's agent doesn't do him justice.

"He's my second Dad," smiles Wamangituka.

The pair have known eachother since Wamangituka was spotted as a 12 year-old street player by scouts for Black Mountain Sport Academy, a soccer school part-owned by Nicolas Anelka and which counts Belesi as a legal rep.

"I believe strongly in this boy, he has incredible speed and qualities, he is powerful and good technically. In addition, he is humble and respectful," says Belesi, who upon negotiating the player's transfer from Ales to PFC promptly moved Wamangituka into the family home.

"By living at home, I am better supervised," says Wamangituka, who acts as a big brother to Belesi's three children.

"He does not go out, he stays at home, he reviews his matches, he recovers and plays with my three children," says Belesi, whose friendship with Pierre Dreossi was key to PFC landing the teen.

Before then, Montpellier had allowed Wamangituka to slip their net. "There were no spots available at their academy," recalls Belesi, who would then place Wamangituka at Ales before urging Dreossi, PFC's football chief, to take a close look at the striker.

"I knew Pierre Dréossi well, so I suggested he take Silas for the reserves."

Of course, given Dreossi's success as sporting director with the likes of Rennes and Lille, it came as little surprise that Wamangituka was quickly promoted to Mécha Bazdarevic's first team in preseason.

"I really like this kid," says Bazdarevic. "He is always listening, hardworking. He is young, so we do not put too much pressure on him. But if he continues like this, he will progress very quickly and he will go far."

For his part, Belesi admits he's delighted Wamangituka has found himself under the wing of the Bosnian.

He explained: "In an environment like football where the humanity often goes into the background, it is important for Silas to have met a great guy like Mecha.

"He's behaved like a father (to him). He gave him a pair of football boots, it touched him a lot. He is in good hands. He has all the assets to go after his dreams."

Which is why you fancy there'll be no rush from Belesi and his partners to relocate Wamangituka at the end of this season. PSG, Marseille, Liverpool, Barca. They can all come knocking, but Belesi knows everything is happening too quickly for his 'adopted' son.

Another season with PFC. And potentially in Ligue 1. Would suit all concerned.

"We stay put," insists Belesi. "We are focusing more on the end of the season and a promotion for Paris FC. That would see a second club of the capital in Ligue 1 which would be great.

"And the rest? We will examine all proposals and all sporting aspects to the millimetre and we will give our decision when the time comes."

In other words, there's no reason to rush. Which surely is the right approach for the kid from Kinshasa.


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TransfersOpinion
Chris Beattie
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Chris Beattie

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