Barça's move for Trinaco surprised a lot of people in January but his recent performances show he's got the potential to be very special
On the 28th December 2018, Abel Ferreira turned to 19-year-old Francisco Trincao and handed him his senior debut against Vitoria Setubal in the Taça de Liga. On that day he replaced the club captain Fransergio. Coincidentally, Trincao's last assist for Braga was for Fransergio. It would be the final chapter in Trincao's rapid rise through the ranks at Braga but one which will now see him embark on a new chapter at FC Barcelona.
Braga's victory on the final day of the season secured them third place in Liga NOS and Europa League football next season.
Trincao's hug with current coach Artur Jorge, who oversaw his progression through the academy, went viral. "Thank you for everything" was the message the youngster had for a coach who has meant so much to him and his career. It brought an end to his nine years at Braga as he'll took to progress even further in a Barça shirt from August.
Braga's president, Antonio Salvador, said this about Trincao in 2016: "One day we'll sell you for 30 million euros." At the time, Trincao was only 16 years old but the hype and expectation surrounding him was already huge. And now, justified.
Trincao has gone from strength to strength since his debut with the first team and made a total of 48 appearances. Most of those came off the bench and it took a year for him to score his first goal on the 12th December 2019. It came in a 4-2 victory against Bratislava in the Europa League.
FIRST LEAGUE START, FIRST LEAGUE GOAL
Only a few days later, Trincao was handed his first start in Liga NOS. On the 4th January against Beleneses, he scored one of the goals in Braga's 7-1 triumph.
This match was Ruben Amorim's first game in charge after replacing Ricardo Sa Pinto. From that moment onwards, nobody could take Trincao out of the starting lineup. Even after agreeing on a move to Barça, the coronavirus outbreak and yet another change in coach, Trincao was 'untouchable'.
During the break, the youngster took the time to peak with Abel Ruiz, who joined Braga from Barça in January. Trincao wanted to find out all he could about La Masia, his teammates and also to begin learning Spanish.
HIS STATS PROVE HIS QUALITY
In his 28 Liga NOS matches (16 as a starter), Trincao has scored 8 goals and provided 8 assists. His form earned him Player of the Month awards in both January and February.
The biggest motivation for Trincao to make the move was so he could train alongside Lionel Messi and company. He's left-footed, although is comfortable with his right too, and his favoured position is on the right-hand side of the attack.
the future is at his feet
Trincao is rapid, great at one-on-ones, has the vision to pick out a pass and the talent to adapt to the team's needs. One of his greatest assets at Barça will be the fact he can play in multiple positions across the frontline.
He's desperate to start preseason with Barça and establish himself in the squad. Trincao knows he is joining a team which has a history of winning trophies but that there's a new wave of young talent who are ready and willing to step up. Alongside Pedri, Ansu Fati, Riqui Puig, Carles Aleña and Matheus Fernandes they could form a side that could dominate for years to come. Trincao is very much part of that future vision too.
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