Jorge Simao, Diogo Jota’s coach at Paços Ferreira, got things off his chest about the Portuguese footballer’s explosion, whom he once compared to Cristiano Ronaldo. He wondered what those who took him for a madman would think now.
In Diogo Jota’s few weeks at Liverpool he has made his mark. He arrived at Liverpool somewhat quietly, as the Reds are a great team and it seemed that he would be condemned to the bench.
The young Portuguese player had a hard time getting started, but he’s had a spectacular last two weeks. Since 24 October, when he scored the winning goal against Sheffield United, the former Wolves player has not missed a goal.
He scored again against Midtjylland in the Champions League and once again scored the winning goal in the Premier League, in a hard-fought match against West Ham.
In the Champions League this week, he got an unforgettable hat-trick in Italy against Atalanta that has made many wonder where he came from.
At 23 years old, he is a player who has managed to grow step by step in his career since he excelled ay Paços de Ferreira. He even signed for Atlético de Madrid, but only as a token, as Simeone did not use him and the club kept him out on loan.
That Atletico doubled the seven million they paid for his transfer without him wearing their colours in a competitive match only confirms that the footballer was made to succeed. Wolves tripled his value in just two years.
Jorge Simao, one of his mentors at Paços de Ferreira with Paulo Fonseca, already warned of what was to come… and everyone took him for a joke: “I’m not surprised. It is what he has always done, but now he has more visibility. When he signed for Porto I said that he would be the natural replacement for Cristiano Ronaldo. It was misunderstood, but now many people say that…”.