Who is Brighton’s Paraguayan winger, Julio Enciso?
Brighton, it seems, have unearthed another gem. This time it is 19-year-old Paraguayan forward, Julio Enciso.
Once again, England’s best run club have found another superstar for the future. This time, it is 19-year-old Paraguayan winger, Julio Enciso, who has lit up the Premier League recently with amazing performances and stunning goals.
Brighton are making a name for themselves for their fantastically well-judged moves in the transfer market and have struck gold time and time again with deals that constantly pay dividends for the football club. The Seagulls lost Graham Potter, at the time one of England’s top coaching prospects, and were instantly able to replace him with Roberto De Zerbi, swiftly moving from one phase of the plan to the next.
Brighton’s master transfer plan works every time
The same goes with the players. Marc Cucurella was swept up in the Chelsea tornado that tore through English football in the summer, and ended up at Stamford Bridge alongside Potter. But Brighton, having just seen one of their top players depart, did not flinch, simply replacing him with an equally as capable left-back in Pervis Estupiñán.
Up front, Kaoru Mitoma has been the sensation of the season, with his dribbling causing problems for the league’s best full-backs up and down the country. Brighton’s recruitment has been nothing short of exceptional under chairman Tony Bloom and the fact that they are prepared to take the long road with their transfers - Mitoma played on loan at Union Saint-Gilloise for a year after signing for the English club - showing that sustainability and patience can work together in sport to bring about success.
Julio Enciso is the latest in Brighton’s long line of prospects to take to the pitch as they fight for Europe. Enciso, born in Caaguazú, Paraguay in 2004 (ouch), moved from his home team to Club Libertad, in Asunción, at the age of 11. From there, he made his debut aged 15 and moved to Brighton in June 2022, then 18-years-old, for a fee reported to be around €10 million.
Enciso scored the winner against Chelsea
After scoring 11 goals and providing three assists in 14 league appearances for Libertad in the 21/22 season, he signed a deal with Brighton - who fought off competition from Manchester City and Arsenal - until 2026 and has now featured 13 times for the club, having made his Premier League debut in October. Upon signing for the English team, Potter said: “Julio is an exciting young talent. We’re really looking forward to helping him develop. He will complement our existing attacking options this coming season.”
He shot to fame in England in Brighton’s win over Chelsea, after he scored an outrageous, top-corner strike from outside the box to secure a famous 1-2 win over Frank Lampard’s spiralling side. He also played over an hour against Manchester United in the FA Cup semi-final. Enciso has become known in England for his ability to create danger, his drilling and passing as well as his ferocious shooting skills.
Brighton manager says Enciso ‘has to improve his mentality’
Enciso is vying to become a starter for Brighton after such positive performances but manager De Zerbi is making sure the player’s feet keep planted on the ground: “Enciso I can say is a good, good player. I didn’t like him after the goal [against Chelsea] because after the goal he finished playing and he has to play until the end of the game. Because if we don’t win, the people forget his goal.”
He also said, on the winger’s performance against Wolves (in which Enciso got 2 assists), “he played well, he played better. I think he can play one step more. He played as a winger, I think he can play as a number 10 too. I think he has to improve his mentality. I think he can still change his attitude depending on how the game is going,” De Zerbi told local media.
“My work is to help him to progress and become a great player. He has big potential but he is like my son, he is the same age as my son. I can understand the limitations he still has.”