Inter Miami confirm ambitious signings of Argentine youngsters Matías Pellegrini & Julián Carranza

When Atlanta United began their inaugural season in Major League Soccer in 2017 the ambitious new franchise looked to Argentina’s top flight and signed among others their star Designated Player Miguel Almirón. Ahead of the 2020 MLS season, the similarly determined expansion side Inter Miami have looked to the same market and announced the signings of Matías Pellegrini and Julián Carranza.

While Almirón had just been named Golazo Player of the season in Argentina helping Lanús to a surprise league title, Inter Miami have captured slightly more latent potential.

Both Pellegrini and Carranza at nineteen years of age are yet to truly stamp their mark on senior football but are regarded as two of the brightest prospects in the Superliga poised on the cusp of a breakout season.*

Matías Pellegrini made his Estudiantes first-team debut last year and has since scored three goals in fifteen appearances while Carranza made his Banfield debut at the end of 2017 going on to score ten goals in 30 appearances. Both coming in at a cost, somewhere reportedly in the region of $6-10 million each, and staying at their respective clubs on loan until January.

“It’s important for us that we found young, exciting attacking players that are on the upside of their career and have the potential to be really good players in this league,” Inter Miami sporting director Paul McDonough said in the press release.

“We will continue to build and add quality players that are the right fit for our Club. We started with youth, but we know it’s also important to have veteran players who come from both overseas and within the league to balance out the roster over time.”

Inter Miami confirmed that Pellegrini would be a Young Designated Player and it marks a rapid rise for the teenage winger who only really burst onto the scene midway through 2018. Quick, hardworking and with the ability to beat his marker whether on the outside or in more central areas, Pellegrini showed no fear at senior level whether in the Copa Libertadores or against the likes of Boca Juniors, where he scored a memorable solo goal.

A product of Estudiantes’ fine academy, Pellegrini has represented Argentina at under-17 and under-20 level and while the inconsistency of youth is at times evident, the tricky forward has been tipped for big things.

Carranza, who hails from the province of Córdoba, moved to Buenos Aires at 13 to join Banfield’s academy and after making his debut and hitting five goals during a maiden campaign, there were no shortage of links to major European clubs with reports of Manchester United and Real Madrid scouts keeping tabs.

Playing second-fiddle to Darío Cvitanich for much of that time, Carranza is now set to be manager Hernán Crespo’s first choice number nine and there are few better mentors for a young number nine in Argentina.

Deceptively quick, industrious and able to link up play with his back to goal, Carranza thrives in the penalty area and looks for that movement to make a yard and finish instinctively.

McDonough went on to say, “Both Julián and Matías showed us they really wanted to take the next step of their career with Inter Miami CF.

“We liked that Pellegrini can play inside and out wide, has very good aerobic capacity and can cover a lot of ground, while Julián is a very grounded player with an impressive work rate. He’s the player that strives to score goals and is very good in the box.”

The pair are certainly interesting additions to the new club and such is the trend for MLS clubs to look to South America for talent it would not be a surprise to see more added to the squad before 2020.

*Both players were named in the 2018 Golazo 50.

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