Ronaldinho's son Joao Mendes makes Barcelona debut, his highlights have emerged online
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Ronaldinho's son Joao Mendes made his Barcelona debut for Juvenil B at this week's Mediterranean International Cup – and a highlights package of his performance have emerged online.
The 17-year-old forward, who can play across the front line, was announced as a Barcelona player in March after a successful trial period.
Mendes initially struggled in the early stages of his trial at La Masia. In fact, Barca president Joan Laporta asked the club's coaching staff to extend his trial so he could have more time to settle.
But after a slow start to life with Blaugrana, the teenager was rewarded with a deal after flourishing in the latter stages.
✍🏼 El jugador 𝗝𝗼𝗮̃𝗼 𝗠𝗲𝗻𝗱𝗲𝘀 ha signat, en presència del directiu @SolerFerre i del director del Futbol Formatiu José Ramon Alexanco, la seva incorporació al FC Barcelona en l’etapa juvenil#FCBMasia 💙❤️ pic.twitter.com/IyVWbFddHU— FC Barcelona - Masia (@FCBmasia) March 2, 2023
The Catalan giants offered him a contract on March 2 that was signed in the presence of Joan Soler and the director of Barcelona's formative football department Jose Ramon Alexanco.
A few weeks later and Mendes, who has previously played in the youth systems of Paris Saint-Germain, Cruzeiro and Flamengo, started for Juvenil B – the under-19 team at Barcelona – in the Mediterranean International Cup.
Relevo journalist Albert Roge attended the game and said the forward started on the far right but ended up on the left.
As you can see in the footage below, Mendes showed glimpses of technical ability throughout but some fans pointed out some flaws to his game. Check out the compilation of his performance below.
Before the deal to sign Mendes was made public, a delighted Ronaldinho confirmed the news to Spanish publication Marca,
"Yes he is coming now," he said. "I'm never out of the club. Barcelona is part of life. Wherever I go I take Barcelona with me. With the arrival of my son at Barca I'll be more present than ever."
Mendes' agent Roberto de Assis, who is also his uncle, was in direct contact with president Laporta to discuss a transfer to the Spanish club.
Laporta and Mendes' father Ronaldinho have maintained a strong relationship following the Brazilian's highly influential spell at the Camp Nou, where he helped Barcelona lift the Champions League in 2006.
- Ronaldinho's son hid his identity during trial, nobody knew his dad was one of the greats
Thoughts on Mendes' performance on his debut? Let us know in the comments.