The Albanian left for Vitesse on a season long loan and has since then become top goal scorer among teenagers playing in Europe’s top 10 leagues
Chelsea has one of their best youngsters out on loan to Dutch Professional league as he has since his arrival impressed with goals and assists.
Armando Broja is enjoying a ‘breakout season’ with his loan team after making his last appearance for Chelsea against Everton before the COVID breakout.
The 19-year-old will remain with Vitesse until the end of the season after sealing his season-long loan move during the start of the season.
Broja with his 9 goals and 2 assists has already surpassed Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s first season at Ajax as he is now likely to outweigh Luis Suarez’s 10 goals for Groningen.
Speaking on his career as he talked of wanting to surpass Chelsea legend, Didier Drogba.
“Nine goals and two assists is good but I am never satisfied,” Broja tells Goal. “I want to get more goals and assists to keep tallying them up.
“I have played over 1000 minutes and I have 11 goal contributions. It is not bad but I want more goals and assists. I want to do more.”
Not just can the youngster be looking up to the likes of Suarez and Ibrahimovic in emulating a superb career, Broja is also a lover of 54 goals in 58 appearances for PSV Ronaldo.
“The original Ronaldo was incredible, probably the best striker of all time,” he says. “I was a bit young to watch him on TV but I watched a lot of his clips on YouTube.
“I knew that R9 came to PSV, I knew Suarez and Zlatan were at Ajax. A lot of top strikers played in Holland in their first season, so I thought it was also a great place to learn and develop.”
Vitesse and Chelsea has shared a long tie in business with the likes of Mason Mount, Nemanja Matic and Dominic Solanke already gone this route.
The both clubs grew their tie via their Russian owners although the club (Vitesse) is now overseen by the former employees of Red Bull Group; sporting director Johannes Spors and manager Thomas Letsch.
The duo materialized Broja’s loan move to Vitesse after seeing the youngster impress in Chelsea’s youth team.
“I really had to fight for Armando, it was not like: ‘I want Armando’ and: ‘Here you go’,” Spors tells Goal.
“I had to really convince him. If he said no, it is no. I had to convince Chelsea that we thought he was ready for that. We have to still make sure that everyone is convinced that it is the right step.
“It is a good relationship. Nothing happens because of the owners, but it opens doors.”
Having come through into the top ranks, Broja first tested academy football at the age of 6 although not with Chelsea.
“A Tottenham scout came down to a tournament to watch another player, I performed well, won the best player and was top scorer,” Broja explains.
“The scout came and spoke to my parents and me, and they said: ‘I would love it if your son would try out at Tottenham’.
“I had a single session there and the academy boss said they wanted me to sign. I had Fulham wanting me as well, but I chose Tottenham.
“Tottenham have a big rivalry with Chelsea. I went down to Cobham to play them and I remember starting on the bench.
“I may have supported Chelsea and loved Chelsea, but I always wanted to play against them and beat them, mostly because I wanted to actually play for Chelsea.
“Unfortunately, I was on the bench and I was really angry about it. At the time, the big decision makers at Chelsea were watching the game, so I thought if I come on I can maybe impress them.
“Straight away after coming on I scored one and assisted one. We drew against Chelsea’s’ A’ team and then we played against their ‘B’ team and I think we won 9-0. I got seven goals!
“The Chelsea scouts came over and said they would love to have me. I was so happy because I could play for the club I supported. I was like: ‘Yes, I want to be here; this is the club I love’. I have been at Chelsea from the Under-9s until now.”
“In the first year of Under-18s when I was 17, I wasn’t having the greatest season,” he admits. “I was on the bench and, when I did get a chance, I was struggling. I scored two goals all season, so I was really down.
“My parents were trying to help and encourage me, but I had lost a lot of confidence. Even in training, I was missing shots, so I didn’t play a lot.
“Then, I had a boost from my mum and dad that Albania had called me to play with them in the summer. It was the Under-19s, so I thought it would be good to go there, get some confidence in a different team with different players, and take my mind away from Chelsea.”
“I was like: ‘Wow! That’s Frank Lampard, [Didier] Drogba or John Terry right in front of me’ when I would see them around,” he says. “I loved to take pictures with them because I wanted to be them. I wanted to be in their shoes at the top level.
“Now I am approaching the age they were when they were playing, I want to try and surpass Drogba. It might not be easy, but that’s my mentality and how I am feeling.”