Expert: Wolves signing Yerson Mosquera like a young Yerry Mina

Yerson Mosquera is ‘very, very quick’ and has the talent and mindset to fit in well at Wolves, according to a South American football expert.

Yerson Mosquera
Yerson Mosquera

Mosquera has been snapped up for £4.5million as the first buy of the Bruno Lage era.

The 20-year-old centre-half comes in as an unknown quantity for most Wolves fans, joining from Atletico Nacional in his homeland.

But Simon Edwards, a Colombia based journalist for the World Football Index, has watched his growth closely and feels he has all the tools to be a top Premier League defender – despite playing at the other end of the pitch as a youngster.

“He initially came through as a striker, had a lot of pace as a kid,” said Edwards.

“He moved to Atletico Nacional in 2018, and they are one of the biggest clubs in Colombia. They are known as the ‘Kings of the Cup’ in Colombia as they’ve won the Copa Libertadores, the Champions League equivalent, twice.

“He had also played as a defensive midfielder in youth football but once he moved to Nacional, they were pretty clear that he’s a central defender.

“In January 2020, Yerson made his debut in a friendly tournament in the United States, and that’s where a lot of people first took note of him.

“He did well but at the time, he was quite skinny, so he’s worked on that a lot over the past 12 to 18 months.

“He’s been doing additional sessions after club training with a personal trainer, and working with Juan Pablo Angel who’s been giving him advice and guidance.

“There was a definite sense that he had the natural potential physically while also having very good technique on the ball, but that work made all the difference.

“When he finally made his competitive debut, it was in a Copa Sudamericana game, the Europa League equivalent.

“He started and got sent off just before half-time which was not ideal, but it was a nothing kind of pushing and pulling situation, and he’d had a really, really impressive game until that.

“He’s just gone from strength to strength. He’s very, very quick.

“He’s been a lot faster and stronger than many of the strikers he’s faced.”

Edwards cites Mosquera’s agility on the turn and that ‘first yard-and-a-half’ as a potential weakness, while there have been ‘one or two errors’ along the way.

But he feels the 20-year-old shares some similarities with compatriots Davinson Sanchez and Yerry Mina, of Tottenham and Everton respectively, which stand him in good stead

“When he scores goals, he likes to dance,” said Edwards.

“He was known as Yerry, as in Yerry Mina, by his team-mates at Atletico Nacional because he won lots of headers, scored goals and did lots of dancing, so that’s where the Mina comparisons come from.

“What he has which is similar to Yerry, too, is really, really long legs.

“He’s good at slide tackling and from set pieces, and his long passing is similar to Mina’s.

“Yerson played for the same club, in Atletico Nacional, as Sanchez and has looked up to him as a role model.

“He has similar acceleration and pace to Sanchez, but his physicality is probably closer to Mina. He is strong and aggressive, but more level-headed than Sanchez.

“We’ll see what happens, but there’s definitely comparisons to both.”

Mosquera has experience of playing both in a traditional defensive four and on the right side of a back three.

Former Villa striker Angel has been preparing him for life in the Premier League as well.

“Angel has been involved at Atletico Nacional in different roles and saw the potential in Yerson,” said Edwards.

“He saw his great frame and ability on the ball.

“He made it clear that Yerson could easily be a leading star in the Colombian League without putting the extra work in.

“But to play in the Premier League, it requires more.

“Obviously, Angel had a very good career in England, but it’s an adaption as everything is so different.

“He’s worked with Yerson to prepare him physically and mentally for that.”

Edwards sees Mosquera, with time, of course, fitting into the Wolves dressing room nicely.

“He’s quite shy but he’s giggly and fun,” he added.

“He’s a quietly confident guy who’s very friendly.

“It’s going to be an adaption. I imagine he’d be quite shy at first, but hopefully he’ll bring that positivity.

“He’s always smiling off the field, and on it he’s strictly business. Very focused.”

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