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Barcelona tracking Ecuadorian youth star - report

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Johan Mina is set to play the U17 World Cup

Equador Portraits - FIFA U-17 World Cup Brazil 2019 Photo by Alexandre Schneider - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images

Barcelona are awaiting what Johan Mina will do in the FIFA U17 World Cup, which begins tomorrow, according to Diario SPORT. The 17-year-old Ecuadorian has established himself as his country’s hottest prospect with a brilliant display during the 2019 South American U-17 Championship.

Mina was the top scorer of the tournament held in Peru despite being a midfielder, with six goals, and he also had two assists. The Ecuadorians finished fourth.

He started the tournament as a sub but quickly established himself as the main star of the team, memorably scoring a hat-trick against Chile in a 3-2 win over the eventual runners-up.

Barcelona is said to have sent top scouts Pep Boada and Ramon Planes to watch Mina during the U17 World Cup in Brazil.

Mina is part of the Ecuadorian club Emelec, however, he cannot sign for a foreign team until he turns 18 due to FIFA rules. That will happen next February, at which point he will be able to join Barcelona if the Catalans still want him.

Emelec want to renew his contract, but he has refused to do so, which has resulted in him not playing with the Guayaquil-based club for more than a year and now is no longer even attending training.

Chelsea are also said to be on alert for him.