The 25-year-old Brazilian midfielder Robson Azevedo da Silva Robinho, joined Bangladesh Premier League (BPL) champions Bashundhara Kings on a one-year loan deal from Brazilian club Fluminense FC. The Bangladeshi side officially made the announcement last week on their Facebook page, keeping the transfer amount secret.
According to a website named ‘Transfermarkt’, Robinho joined Kings with the market value of 725 thousand euro or approximately Tk 72, 670,316.49 which is the highest paid transfer for any foreign player in Bangladesh taking into account Kings’ Argentine star Hernan Barcos (euro 500 thousand) and former Kings skipper Daniel Colindres Solera (325 thousand euro).Now the question arises, would the youngster, who hasn’t played in the international arena yet, be able to prove his worth? Can Robinho be a good replacement of Colindres? Bashundhara Kings' Marketing and Media Manager Ahmed Shaaek gave the answer to Daily Sun, “Signing big names who are old can give the marketing boost but when we consider their effectiveness in the field, that’s when things get messy. It is true he (Robinho) never participated in the international arena, but we also have to count the opponents he has faced. Brazilian top league’s quality is far better than any of the leagues in Asia and Barcos’ first match was a prime example of that. That’s why our President (Imrul Hassan) made the remark that if he can give 50% of his ability, he is going to tear apart any defence line of any club from this region.”
BPL champions released Colindres in June. The 35-year-old Costarican forward played a total of 31 games for Kings and scored 16 goals in his 22-month tenure. Colindres also contributed one goal in the Kings’ 5-1 win over Maldivian Club TC Sports in their maiden AFC Cup match in Dhaka in March. Barcos netted rest of four goals.
“Colindres was undoubtedly a very good player but we were lacking pace and cutting edge from our attacking third. Robinho’s pace and dribbling skills will be scintillating to watch. Our target is to play AFC Cup Final. We had several meetings with Oscar where he pointed out which are the areas we need to strengthen to aim for the final. Then, we realised that this is a big opportunity for us to strengthen the squad with young players. So, we’re making these replacements in the middle of the competition and injecting fresh legs into the squad,” said Shaaek.
The Brazilian winger, who started his career in 2016, played for several clubs of Brazilian Serie A, B and C competitions including Atibaia, Confianca, Figueirense, Fluminense, America Mineiro, CSA, Vila Nova, Agua Santa.
Describing their procedure of signing Robinho, the Kings’ official said, “We must thank Confianza Sports Management as they sent us the profile of Robinho. We mainly analyse the players through videos, statistical data. Then, we make a shortlist and start negotiating with them. However, for Robinho, there were two layers of negotiations. First, with the player and then, with club Fluminense. Negotiation with Robinho was very quick as our valuation and his demand matched. The negotiation with Fluminense was very different. This is because they are one of the topmost professional clubs in the world. We have learnt a lot from them through this negotiation. It took two weeks to complete all procedures.”
Kings also released other foreign players namely Tajik defender Akhtam Nazarov, Kyrgyz midfielder Bakhtiyar Duyshobekov and Argentine defender Nicholas Delmonte. The rumours and gossips started to come out about their third and fourth recruitment.“Hopefully, the combination of Barcos and Robinho will be a good one as both of them play a Latin American style of football. However, we want to strengthen our midfield with Latin American playmakers. So, we are eyeing for another Brazilian footballer. We are working on it now. We also have to recruit one player from the Asian region. We have several choices namely an Australian, an Iraqi. Let’s see. At this moment, I can assure only one thing that we are going toe to toe with European clubs in terms of where we are signing players from with effective quality rather than going for superstars at their retirement age. Cause now we need effective good players to win the AFC Cup,” he ended.