Spurs chief scout Steve Hitchen’s recent scouting trip to Argentina took in matches between Boca Juniors and Newell’s Old Boys and Banfield against San Lorenzo.
Reports emerged this week of Hitchen’s South American mission with several newspapers suggesting that the fact that Spurs are looking at Argentinean stars is a good sign for the future of under-fire manager Mauricio Pochettino.
And it has now been revealed that two of the matches Hitchen took in while he was in Buenos Aires were the Superliga meetings between Boca and Pochettino’s old club Newell’s on September 28 and San Lorenzo’s trip to Banfield a day later.
Boca are currently top of the table and were disappointed to be pegged back at home by Newell’s when the visitors scored an 80th-minute equaliser to cancel out defender Carlos Izquierdoz’s early strike in a 1-1 draw.
Assuming Hitchen would only be on the lookout for players on the rise and probably aged 23 or younger then there were only four in the Boca line-up that day with central midfielder Agustin Almendra the standout candidate.
The 19-year-old made the first-team breakthrough earlier this year and has been described as a ‘press-resistant’ player because of his immaculate close control and ability to keep the ball in tight spaces.
Manchester City, Valencia, Barcelona and Napoli have all cast admiring glances his way, according to media reports, so it would be useful for Hitchen to see him live – particularly as Almendra did not see much action for Argentina’s Under-20 side at the World Youth Cup in Poland last summer.
A player in the Newell’s ranks that could have been interesting is 20-year-old midfielder Anibal Moreno, who starred in the South American U20 Championships earlier this year and played instead of Almendra in Poland, but he sat on the bench and didn’t get on at the Bonbonera.
Although Banfield’s Agustin Urzi, 20, also played a part in Argentina’s run to the last 16 of the Under-20 tournament, Hitchen’s appearance at their Estadio Florencio Sola later that weekend can only have been to have a look at San Lorenzo striker Adolfo Gaich.
The 20-year-old, who has been linked to Everton and AC Milan, was one of Fernando Batista’s key men in Poland, scoring three goals in four appearances and he made his senior international debut in Argentina’s 4-0 win over Mexico last month.Copyright © 2020 Completesports.com All rights reserved. The information contained in Completesports.com may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without the prior written authority of Completesports.com.