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England should watch out for Armando Broja, Albania’s shot from Slough

England watch out: Albania hot shot from Slough! Southampton forward Armando Broja was born in Berkshire and raised by Chelsea with an athletic build and the ability to shoot on either foot.

  • England face Albania in a World Cup qualifying match that they must win on Friday night
  • They will face Armando Broja, an Albanian star born in Berkshire
  • Broja is tall and athletic and can score on either foot and England must be careful.


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Albania, with 15 points from eight games, is enjoying its best World Cup qualifying campaign and its progress has been helped by the emergence of a young striker born in Slough and raised in the Chelsea academy.

Armando Broja turned 20 years old in September. He was born in Berkshire to Albanian parents just five days after Sven Goran Eriksson’s England beat Albania 2-0 in a World Cup qualifier in Newcastle, with goals from Robbie Fowler and Michael Owen.

Berkshire-born Armando Broja will be England's danger against Albania

Berkshire-born Armando Broja will be England’s danger against Albania

TELL ME MORE…

Broja has come to life on loan at Southampton this season with two goals in his last three appearances. “He’s a bit of a slow starter,” Saints boss Ralph Hasenhuttl said. You have to push it a bit. The first two weeks I was looking for what he has to give and I didn’t see much, to be honest.

So I had some very serious conversations with him to tell him what I want to see and now he’s moving in that direction. It is amazing how fast he learns and wants to improve. It gives us qualities that we didn’t have. ‘

The forward has scored two goals since being loaned to Southampton from Chelsea this season.

The forward has scored two goals since being loaned to Southampton from Chelsea this season.

The forward has scored two goals since being loaned to Southampton from Chelsea this season.

WHAT IS YOUR STYLE?

At 6-foot-3, Broja is tall, athletic, with a change of pace and a willingness to run behind defenses. He has a good eye for goal and the ability to shoot with his foot or his head. Ronaldo is his idol.

As soon as his father Xhevahir introduced him to the clips online, he started trying to model his own game with the Brazilian. “He was strong, fast, two feet, he had it all,” said Broja. “This is how I aspire to be.”

Already this season, he has seven goals in 13 appearances for the club and the country, including the only goal in each of Albania’s two qualifying matches against Hungary.

He is tall, athletic and can score with either foot, modeling his game on the Brazilian Ronaldo.

He is tall, athletic and can score with either foot, modeling his game on the Brazilian Ronaldo.

He is tall, athletic and can score with either foot, modeling his game on the Brazilian Ronaldo.

HOW DID CHELSEA FIND IT?

He started out playing for Burnham Juniors in Berkshire. There was interest from Reading and Fulham, but Broja played for two seasons with Tottenham before impressing in under-9s games against Chelsea.

As a Chelsea fan, he enthusiastically accepted a change and it developed as he moved through the age groups. Frank Lampard offered him a senior debut as a late substitute for Olivier Giroud in a 4-0 win over Everton, days before the first lockout in March 2020.

A SEASON IN THE HOLLAND …

He spent last season on loan at Vitesse Arnhem, where he helped them finish fourth to qualify for Europe. They also reached the final of the Dutch Cup and their header led to victory in the semi-final against VVV-Venlo.

Broja finished his year in Dutch football with 11 goals, then returned to Chelsea, where he scored three in the preseason.

He signed a new five-year contract at Stamford Bridge in July, before turning to St Mary’s on loan.

Broja scored 11 goals on loan at the Vitesse last season to help them qualify for Europe.

Broja scored 11 goals on loan at the Vitesse last season to help them qualify for Europe.

Broja scored 11 goals on loan at the Vitesse last season to help them qualify for Europe.

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