The news that the three Musonda brothers are likely to join Chelsea comes as somewhat of a surprise. About a year ago, Anderlecht announced that the elder boys – Lamisha and Tika – were being awarded professional contracts and that the club hoped to do the same with Charly Junior when he reached the age of 16. Furthermore, Anderlecht had given Charly Musonda Senior – an ex-player at the club – a job at the Academy. It looked like they had created a package that would bind Charly Musonda Junior to Anderlecht for several years to come.
Now, with Herman Van Holsbeeck saying that he has appreciated the way the Chelsea have conducted negotiations – to take all three brothers – and that the London club had made a significant financial effort, it looks like the game is over.
Charly Musonda Senior was a stalwart of the Anderlecht side in the eighties and nineties. Arriving from Zambia, he played for Cercle Brugge before moving to Anderlecht where he played over 100 games before injury cut down his career. It could have been much worse, in 1993, Anderlecht refused to let him play for the Zambian national team in a World Cup qualifier and the whole squad perished in a plane crash.
As for the boys, all three brothers can be seen as future prospects. The eldest – Lamisha, 20 – is an established U21 international who has yet to appear in the Brussels’ club’s first team. He’s is a cultured midfielder who impressed when the Belgium U21 side beat England in Mons last year. After him comes Tika, another midfielder – aged 18 and an U18 Belgium international.
Their problem will be making an impact before the youngest Musonda, Charly Junior, comes along; he’s been described by ex-Anderlecht coach Johan Boskamp as “a mix between Xavi and Iniesta”. Hyperbole perhaps but all the usual suspects have tried to sign him, with Barcelona being the most insistent until Chelsea came calling. With all the talk, Charly Junior, 15, has a heavy weight to carry. He’s often appeared for the Belgium U16 team and can be seen all over YouTube. If he lives up to the hype, Charly Junior could be a very special player indeed.