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Leandro, the new name in Brazilian goals

Leandro, the new name in Brazilian goals

Leandro.

Clearly he is not yet accustomed to interviews and is surprised when conmebol.com asked him for a sit-down.

The interview took place at the Bourbon Hotel where he stayed during the tournament that ended with him as top scorer and Brazil with the title. 

Leandro, with eight goals, the top scorer at the Under-17 Sudamericano says "I am very happy to have been top-scorer but I did not expect that nor was that my goal. I wanted to help the team, help my teammates and fortunately everything went well. If at the end I was top scorer it was because of the work of my teammates. The whole group deserves credit."

Conmebol.com: How did you start in football?

Lenadro: I started in the escolinha of Ribeirao Claro, state of Paraná and then went to Ituano of Sao Paulo.

c.c.: How old were you when you went to Ituano?

L: 13

c.c.: How were you transfered at such a young age?

L.: Our team played a friendly in which there were scouts who saw me and invited me to play in Sao Paulo.

c.c.: How was it being away from your family at that age?

L.: It is difficult but one has to get used to it. At first it is very complicated

c.c.: Are you still at Ituano?

L.: No, now I'm at club Ponte Preta.

c.c.: Have you been able to train with the professionals?

L.: Yes, a few times I trained with the top squad.

c.c.: We assume that after what you did at the Sudamericano your club is pretty happy.

L.: Yes, they called and told me that we will have a meeting with the directors. Let's see what happens.

c.c.: You are aware that there are many scouts from European clubs at these tournaments?

L.: Yes, we know, we talked about it even with our coaches. But we try to have that not influence our game and not think about it.

c.c.: You said it was not your main objective to be top scorer. How would you describe yourself? What position do you like to play?

L.: I think I have peace of mind to play and I like playing in midfield and forward. I play offense and I also have speed.

c.c.: What player do you admire?

L.: I like how Robinho plays and also Neymar.

c.c.: Do you try to copy them?

L.: You try to see what they do but it is difficult to imitate, they are great players.

c.c.: What's it like at your age to be called to the national team?​

L.: It is a great honor and a thrill that cannot be explained. And on top of that they gave me the number 10 shirt. It was a nice surprise.

c.c.: And now how do you think your career will go?

L.: I'm going to stay with Ponte Preta until I'm 18 and later I will go to Udinese in Italy. It is already set. 

c.c.: Ah, well, rightly you're not concerned with foreign scouts​.

He smiles the same way football has smiled on him. He's only 16 and in two more years the doors of Europe will open. We will have to follow him to see if, as so often has happened in this blessed South American football, we can speak of a star that began to shine at the U-17 Sudamericano. Let us note: Leandro, the new name in Brazilian goals.