Fernando Troiani is Liverpool’s main scout in South America & gained that title after arriving from Manchester City in late 2011. The Argentinian has previously worked for AS Monaco, Hannover 96, Bayer Leverkusen & Grasshopper Zurich making him one of the most experienced scouts in the game. Based in Buenos Aires, Fernando travels the continent scouring each division for talent that could shine at Anfield.
Recently he visited Guyaquil where our Ecuadorian correspondent Nicolas Rivera caught up with him to ask him a few questions about his work:
Nice to have you hear in Ecuador, how are you liking it so far?
“Ecuador is a wonderful place! I really enjoy coming here, although the temperature can be extremely hot, especially in a city like Guayaquil.”
So what teams are you most excited to watch & who attracted you the most to visit?
“Well I was fortunate to talk to Carlos Alejandro Moreno who is the Sports Vice President of local club Barcelona SC. He and the team were kind enough to invite me to watch their players and their development. Ecuador has some great football but specifically, I came to watch (the clubs) Barcelona SC and Independiente del Valle.”
So having been here a few days, what’s your initial assessment of Barcelona, Independiente del Valle and Ecuador football in general?
“Well, I was told that Barcelona are currently going through some tough times, so it’s impressive to see how well they’re doing in the league. Barcelona won the title, and Independiente del Valle had an incredible in the Copa Libertadores, so that is something that really attracted me, especially with the circumstances in which Independiente came from the lower leagues.”
Have you came to watch any players in particular, is there someone who has attracted you the most?
“Well in Ecuador I have witnessed some amazing players. Anderson Ordonez, Jefferson Orejuela & Junior Sornoza before they left & the likes of Washington Vera, Gonzalo Moreno, & John Cifuentes. I can’t give you all the names because there’s so many players I watch.”
So, would you be scouting these players for Liverpool’s first team?
No, not at all. Every time I come here I make sure to take a look as many players as I can, across all ages. From the first team to the reserves or even the academy players.
There was plenty of speculation in the media here in Ecuador about centre-back Anderson Ordonez before his move to Eintracht Frankfurt. Had you thought about taking him on trial?
“Well I really can’t comment on it, but I can assure he is a great talent, as well as many other players that I have been watching. But If I like a player and I think it could be benefit or strength Liverpool, I’ll speak with the sporting director here, Carlos Moreno.”
Are there any other players across the continent that you have your eye on for Liverpool, especially with the transfer window around the corner?
“Of course, but I couldn’t possibly comment! You understand why.”
You mentioned earlier that the weather is really hot here, does this affect in any way on the player that you look for?
Yes, of course! I need to know if players are able to adapt to the different situations and environments.”
What specifically do you look for in players when you visit a place like this?
“I want to make sure that players can progress on to a higher level, players from Ecuador are different from Colombians or Argentinian footballers. Thats why I need to make sure I look at every aspect of their games and how well they can adapt to different styles of football.”
So Barcelona are due to face Independiente soon in a massive game here. What are main trait you look for in these types of matches & what makes a player stand out for you?
“It’s really up to the players, they need to show their full potential, and shine with their abilities no matter what the circumstances. I mainly concentrate on endurance. Their footballing ability is often paramount for a player, but when watching players in another country I have to make sure I look at the fitness. No matter how good a player is, or how technical gifted he is, if he can not cope with the level of the fitness expected of a professional footballer in Europe or England, It is no help for us.”
When you take a player on trial, what is your goal? What are you looking for?
Well the main thing is to look at if a player could cut it at Liverpool & if they could help the team, whether it is on an academy level or at first team level. But after that I want to make sure they can get to their full potential, that way not only they can benefit Liverpool but they can also be beneficial for their countries and succeed in an International Level”