CHELSEA went to incredible lengths to seal a transfer for Brazilian starlet Endrick before they made a shock U-turn on the deal.
The Blues' decision not to sign him has seen Real Madrid swoop in, with the youngster to move to the Spanish capital when he turns 18 in July 2024.
From a young talent to a top player, the Palmerias star, 17, rose through the ranks after starting his journey to the Brazilian top flight at age 11.
Over the next five years, Endrick would score 165 goals in 169 games for Palmeiras' youth teams.
And in October 2022he became the youngest player to appear for the club's first team at the age of 16 years, two months and 16 days.
After his debut Chelsea had their eyes set on bringing the Brazil international to West London with transfer reporter Fabrizio Romano revealing what Endricks' father Douglas said about the move.
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To persuade him to come to the Premier League the Blues gave Endrick a glimpse of his potential life there – including his residence and even a church he could attend.
They also enlisted the help of Brazil icon Thiago Silva and Jorginho to sell the project to Endrick.
Douglas said: “We received an invitation from Chelsea, from the owner, and we went there to see the club and the country.
"We saw Chelsea play against Arsenal and we had the opportunity to see the coach, the facilities, Jorginho, César Azpilicueta and Thiago Silva.
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"They explained everything to us. We were introduced to the person who would help us settle in.
"She showed us the house we would live in, the school that Endrick would attend, the church we would attend."
But the deal collapsed when Chelsea's then-new owner Todd Bohely pulled out of the transfer after he succeeded Roman Abramovich who set up the deal before he was forced to depart in summer 2022.
Spanish giants Real Madrid took full advantage by swooping in for the youngster and agreeing to sign Endrick in a huge £60million deal in July 2024.
Douglas continued: "Everything was in order for us and Chelsea.
"However, everything was twisted at the last moment: I can't say 100 per cent because I hadn't signed yet, but the agreement was closed.
"I had already thought that I would live in London with all that cold weather.
"But then, at night, my son's representative called and said that the owner of Chelsea withdrew from the deal because the price they would have to pay for Endrick would inflate the market.
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"It was €60m in total for a 16-year-old boy who would arrive in the country almost two years later.
"Then, Real Madrid arrived”.
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