He was electric last season...

The Brazilian baller destined to rip up Copa America on his way to Premier League stardom

It feels like yesterday that we breathed a sigh of relief and said goodbye to the Premier League for the summer, but with fixtures already announced for next season, club football’s return is fast approaching and teams are scrambling to get their squads ready.

Not Manchester City, though, who are the most well-oiled machine in the land – even if there are question marks over how they’ve become so.

When you’re at the top of the mountain, everybody is desperate to see you come tumbling back down.

Fat chance of that happening with City, though, who appear to be in a constant state of futureproofing a squad which is already good enough to put human life on Mars if Pep Guardiola really wanted them to.

Because that’s not enough, though, and their greed knows no bounds, this summer they’re about to welcome one of the game’s fastest-rising stars into their squad of juggernauts for a year of intercontinental dominance.

Savio has already been quietly chipping away at his mission to conquer Europe through the 2023-24 season on loan at Girona and off the back of a breakthrough campaign, he’s about to go international on the grandest stage of them all, with the most iconic national team of all time.

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Brazil head into Copa America 2024 off the back of a difficult few years, finishing the last edition of the tournament as runners up behind Argentina and then crashing out of the 2022 World Cup in the quarter-final.

This isn’t the all-conquering Selecao of old, but for that reason, we think they might just be in with a chance of restoring former glories this summer.

Especially with Savio heading to his first senior tournament with Brazil, off the back of a whirlwind campaign where he announced himself with 11 goals, 10 assists and a highlight reel that will leave any football fan’s jaw unhinged.

Savio actually made the move from South America to Europe in 2022, joining Troyes but immediately being loaned to PSV. We saw glimpses of what makes him special in the Netherlands, but it’s been in Spain where the winger has truly found his footing.

He’s restoring the feeling one dribble at a time and redefining Joga Bonito within the context of the modern game.

Don’t just take our word for it, either; Savio finished the season with the most successful dribbles in La Liga and could probably end up with life behind bars for the sheer amount of whiplash claims he could be on the receiving end of by the end of 2024.

Numbers don’t do a player as joyous as Savio justice. He passes the eye test with flying colours – see for yourself.

With Savio forcing his way into Dorival’s side on the wing, rotating with the likes of Vinicius Junior, Rodrygo and Raphinha, bite-sized tasters of the soon-to-be City wonderkid will feed families for generations.

It’s the speed at which Savio drives at defenders – with the ball at his feet – that makes him such a devastating player so soon into his career. Being a handy dribbler is one thing, but being able to combine that with pace is lethal.

Crucially, he’s found a consistent end product, too.

Whether that’s bursting down the left flank and lasering a ball across from the byline, or cutting inside from the right and either setting up a teammate with a slick ball between the lines, or having a pop himself, there’s a creativity to his final action that has been discovered in Spain after a slow start at PSV.

We’re not in the business of making direct comparisons and lumping on pressure, but there’s something very Riyad Mahrez about how he manipulates that ball with his left boot.

When you combine that quality with a sense of unrelenting Joga Bonito and give it to Guardiola, well, the rest of England should be petrified.

City – for as flawless as they have been – showed last season that there were chinks in the armour. By adding Savio to their ranks, though, a deal which is expected to go through with no issues this summer, they might just have regenerated with the best player most of us have never heard of.

If given a chance to shine at Copa America, he’ll light up the tournament. It’s the perfect pre-season on his path to world domination. There really is no ceiling for this kid.

By Mitch Wilks