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Will Rayo Vallecano’s faith in two former Premier League wonderboys end in triumph or disaster?

The lowly La Liga side have taken a risk on two men who were once destined for stardom

What a pair of wingers Rayo Vallecano have got… If they were playing Football Manager 2011.

Gael Kakuta and Bebe were tipped for the top seven years ago.

Things didn’t quite turn out that way.


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Kakuta during his Chelsea days

Graham Hughes - The Times
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Kakuta during his Chelsea days

Between the two of them, they have sofa-hopped their way through 17 clubs since 2011.

As fate would have their careers have intertwined once again at Rayo Vallecano in Spain.

Spot the odd one out

PA:Press Association
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Spot the odd one out

Bebe had been preferred to a teenage Eden Hazard when Man United signed him in 2010.

He arrived at Old Trafford fresh off his appearance at the Homeless World Cup, with a single season as a professional footballer to his name.

It quickly became clear Bebe was no Hazard – he managed just seven games in total with a single goal to his name.

He is widely considered one of Sir Alex’s worst signings.

Bebe eventually ended up with Rayo Vallecano, a long way down the footballing pyramid from Fergie’s United.

Bebe made just two premier league appearances

Dave Pinegar - The Sun
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Bebe made just two premier league appearances

Kakuta has had a similarly chaotic early career.
Chelsea snapped up the French sensation aged 16 but it nearly cost them a three-year transfer ban.

Once described by Chelsea scout Guy Hillion as the talent of his generation’ things never really got started for the then France U21 international in London.

He was loaned out six times over six years, including a season at Rayo Vallecano in 2015, before signing for Sevilla.

Like with Bebe, Rayo Vallecano clearly rated the Frenchman highly enough to buy him permanently this summer.

Kakuta praying for his Chelsea career

News Group Newspapers Ltd
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Kakuta praying for his Chelsea career

Vallecano gambled on the one-time Premier League wonderboys and it’s fair to say the house won this one.

But who would have thought it could have turned out any differently?

The Spanish club are without a win in seven.

Kakuta has one goal in nine games, while Bebe has been reduced to a bit-part player and can’t buy a goal for love nor money.

If they were good enough, one of the countless clubs they have played for would have kept a hold of them.

Luis Suarez when he sees who he is up against

Alamy Live News
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Luis Suarez when he sees who he is up against

Vallecano are currently 19th in the league and have a daunting trip to Barcelona on Saturday.

The Camp Nou is the last place they will want to visit.

Both Bebe and Kakuta have finally found a home, and the La Liga minnows will be praying they can soon live up to their once predicted potential.


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