In 1995, by the mouth of the Paraíba River, God decided that the world was going to need a quicksilver magician to lift their spirits and attract them to the game of football, so he created Otávio Monteiro. After bouncing from Recife to Porto Alegre, Otávio’s obvious potential came to fruition in Vitória de Guimarães last season, and he is now an all-important attribute of the team that bought him in 2014, Nuno Santos’ Porto. Ever since his promising performances on the Colorado, or Internacional, he has been seen as one of the most promising midfielders Brazil has produced this decade, but this season, he is blossoming as a starter in a Champions League team, and will be necessary if Porto have any chance of knocking out Juventus from the Round of 16 for the second straight year. Similar to Carlos Alberto in Mourinho’s treble-winning Porto, Otávio is an artist with the ball at his feet, but the pragmatic Portuguese manager demands more of him when the opponent is in possession. Nuno has tried to rectify this laziness by sticking him out on the wing, but it is evident that his best position is at 10. He has been likened to Ronaldinho, and while he’ll never reach the former Barcelona magician’s peak, everything is going swimmingly for Otávio, except for putting the ball in the back of the net. One of the best trequartistas in Porto’s history, and a key part of Porto’s treble in 2004, Deco himself has taken notice of the Internacional product’s talent. “He is a special player who stands out among others with the ball at his feet because of everything he does with it. His talent allows him to do things others cannot, including, take risks in plays and passes.” He is the closest thing Portistas have seen to Deco since….Deco himself, and he may just have what it takes to return Porto to the European elite.
Photo Credit: Pedro Correia/Global Imagens