After arguably the quietest transfer window I can remember, we all woke up on Friday morning to the news that Liverpool had submitted a bid for Colombian forward Luis Diaz and that Porto were willing to accept the offer of £37.5m plus various add-on’s equating to around £15m. Apparently Spurs had made a higher offer, and Manchester United had been scouting him regularly, but the player was adamant that the Reds were his preferred destination. Further news came out during the day that medical staff etc were travelling to South America to complete the final details.
Before we go into the stats, videos and Wyscout report, it is import to explain the title, and Paul McCormack shared this story in the TTT comments section:
Luiz Diaz’ story is incredible and despite all the talent, it’s a miracle he was able to have a professional career. At 17 he was severely underweight, unknown and playing on a dusty pitch in his remote village.
Luis Díaz grew up close to a mining settlement, he ate goat for almost every meal, he didn’t have a television and in the evenings he would listen to his grandma tell stories. He is from an indigenous Wayuu family and he played football in the village team run by his family.
Colombia was looking to put together a team for the Copa America of Indigenous People in Chile.
Luis Díaz’ family was invited to send some players from the club to Bogota for a trial. Luis went but was initially written off as too skinny but in training he impressed and was picked.
He impressed in Chile and caught the eye of Colombian legend Carlos Valderrama. ‘El Pibe’ took him to his former club Junior for a trial, they liked him and sent him to their second division affiliate Barranquilla FC. They said he needed to add 10kg & was on a high protein diet.
He impressed at Barranquilla and was brought across to Junior in 2017, by 2019 he was off to Europe with Porto.
Known as the “people of the sun, sand and wind,” the Wayúu have lived in the semi-arid, Wild West landscape of La Guajira peninsula, where the desert meets the Caribbean Sea at the northernmost point of South America, for centuries. Fiercely territorial and wisely learning how to use firearms and ride horses, they are among few ethnic groups in Latin America to have successfully resisted European colonization. They continue to live on their ancestral lands following their own complex and autonomous social, political and economic rules.
At present, they are Colombia’s largest indigenous group, with estimates of more than 250,000 people divided into some 30 matriarchal clans who live in traditional rancherias – small, isolated communities made up of several houses – between Colombia and Venezuela (the Wayúu are transnational and don’t believe in borders).
Their isolation, together with a proud and tenacious attachment to their land and culture, has enabled them to preserve their unique culture – transmitting ancient rituals and traditions using the Wayuunaiki language, which is still spoken throughout the region.
Before we go into the details of this final scouting analysis, our very own analyst Mizgan wrote a piece leading upto the transfer window all about Diaz. You can find that here:
Here’s the best of the other reports I could find:
And finally, here’s our very own Beez with some superb stats in the Echo.
The rest of this article is for subscribers only: