Racing win the race for the ‘new Messi’ from a host of top clubs


Two years ago, a then 8-year-old, Claudio Ñancufil caught the attention of the football world after footage of the footballing prodigy sparked a media frenzy and rumours of trials with Barcelona, Real Madrid and Manchester United followed. The 10-year-old, dubbed the ‘Messi of the Snow’, given that he hails from the mountainous city of Bariloche in the south of Argentina, has now signed for Racing Club.

It is reported that Ñancufil is a Racing fan which perhaps explains why he and his family turned down opportunities to go abroad and from other Argentine clubs, including Boca and River. His older brother, Braian is already at the club and there are few better clubs in Argentina than La Academia at nurturing talent.

The footage of Claudio playing in Bariloche in 2013 made him something of a star and there were reports of him featuring in a BBC documentary on the past (Diego Maradona), present (Lionel Messi) and future. That didn’t seem to come to fruition and neither did the rumoured transfers to any of the La Liga giants.

At the time, there were sources in Spain to suggest that Barcelona would be willing to pay for hormone treatment, as they did with Messi, to ensure that Ñancufil would join the famous Masia.

At ten, it will be a long time before we will even see Ñancufil with Racing let alone one of Europe’s top clubs but it will be interesting to see how he now progresses. Here is the video from 2013….

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