By Chris Wright
A-League side Adelaide United have been forced into making a particularly embarrassing admission after the prodigious trialist they hyped to high heaven, one 25-year old Dexter Rosales, turned out to be completely fictional – like God, the Easter Bunny and Tom Cruise.
Having scoured the internet for potential gems the world over, Adelaide announced that two players were to be handed trials at the club – former Chelsea reserve striker Fabio Ferreira and Rosales, who was billed as having represented Ajax, Valencia, River Plate and Club Atletico Junior as well as the US national side at U17, U20 and U23 level.
Valencia and River Plate were both swift to confirm that no-one by the name Dexter Rosales had ever been on their book, with Ajax also confirming that the pictures circulating of ‘Dexter’ where indeed photographs of one of their former youth players, Mauro Rosales, who was at the Dutch club up until 2006.
Alas, it turns out that an ‘I’m Feeling Lucky’ Google search is not the most foolproof scouting technique after all, and Rosales never materialised – despite having a Wikipedia page and a Youtube highlights reel – as it quickly became apparent they’d been ‘Ali Dia-ed’.
A spokesman for Adelaide told Sportal:
“It has been a strange few days with all the speculation around this mystery man – it doesn’t look great from our end.
“We’re not the first club to be given a false lead with a supposed trialist, but other clubs probably just don’t promote it to the world like we did.”
It would appear that Adelaide took the Rosales bullet for a number of other clubs, with several other suitors (who’d obviously prefer to remain anonymous) said to have been vying for the non-existent striker’s attention.
Seems the Google approach to scouting may be a bit more widespread than we’d first imagined.