Chelsea announce first signing of the summer under Pochettino

Chelsea have officially completed the signing of South American youngster Kendry Paez from Independiente del Valle.

The 16-year-old Ecuador midfielder will finally head to Stamford Bridge after he turns 18 in May 2025.

Paez is set to join Chelsea from Ecuadorian Serie A leaders Independiente del Valle, the same team from whom Brighton signed Moises Caicedo in January 2021.

It was reported in April that Chelsea had agreed a deal that could end up being more than £17.5m if all performance-related add-ons are met, beating rivals Manchester United and Dortmund in the process.


The Blues will hope to have a multi-club network set up by the time Paez joins, allowing him to gain more experience in Europe before making the grade in London.

Paez is regareded as one of the most exciting young talents in South American football, and he has made six senior appearances at club level having become both the youngest debutant and goalscorer in the history of the Ecuadorian top division.

He was also named as the outstanding player at the 2022 Next Generation Trophy tournament in Austria, later shining at the Under-17 Copa America competition.

Most recently at the Under-20 World Cup, Paez had a goal and three assists as Ecuador finished as runners-up behind the United States in Group B before being beaten by South Korea in their last-16 clash in Argentina.

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