Mendy who? Jorge showing Jardim's Monaco production line never stops

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Jorge Monaco
The left-back has slotted in seamlessly after replacing the Manchester City man, playing a leading role in Monaco's early season charge

While the headlines in Monaco continue to be made by the principality side’s eye-watering profits in the transfer market, on the field Leonardo Jardim’s side have continued the form that drove them to the Ligue 1 title last season.

They are in the midst of a formidable 16-match winning sequence, the longest in French top-flight history, which has seen them chalk up a perfect four wins from four so far this term.

This form has successfully highlighted the strength in depth that has quietly been amassed on the south coast, with those who've departed having been seamlessly replaced.

One of those to step into the spotlight is 21-year-old Brazilian defender, Jorge. His role of replacing Benjamin Mendy, christened the world’s most expensive defender when he moved to Manchester City for €56m, was not considered to be an easy one.

Jorge, however, has shown that he is perfectly capable of filling such big boots.

Jorge Monaco

He offers a similar attacking threat to the Manchester City man and has already registered assists in two of his four appearances so far this term. The latest of these arrived on Sunday, when Monaco annihilated Marseille 6-1, with the attack-minded youngster the man fouled to win the penalty for his side’s final goal.

It was moment that capped another formidable display for a man who spent his first six months in France largely in the shadows.

Signed from Flamengo for €8.5m in January, a club-record sale at that time, he had to watch on from the sidelines as Monaco steamrolled their way to the title. He made only two appearances, playing a total of 90 minutes.

Acclimatising on the bench appears to have been no issue, though.

Patience has never been a problem for him. After learning the game playing futsal, he transferred to the outdoor version of the game at 13 but only slowly made an impression in his homeland. Indeed, it would be 2014 before he was noticed and handed his professional debut.

Given his chance due to an injury to Pablo Armero, he shone and became an irreplaceable member of the side. Within two years, the dynamic full-back had been named the best left-back in the Brasiliero, catching the eye with dashing runs forward and a powerful shot, earning comparisons to Flamengo great and former Brazil international Junior in the process.

Jorge Monaco

Now, though, it is Marcelo he must usurp if he is to claim a starting berth for his nation, with whom he has already been given a taste of the senior game, having claimed one cap in a friendly against Colombia. That will be no easy task and Jorge will be under no illusions of the challenge he is faced with given that the Real Madrid ace is one of his idols.

He stands a very good chance, though. In improving his strength, he has already shown a willingness to address areas of his game that need improving.

When his side have had tough defeats, historically he has always been happy to front up to the press and explain where things went wrong.

And at Monaco he has the benefit of working under Jardim, who has already proven himself capable of getting the very best out of youngsters.

Jorge is the type of character likely to make the most of his chance, too. His is quiet figure off the field, but also thoughtful. When he received his first professional wage from Flamengo, he bought the workers at the club’s training ground food to help feed their families.

He has come a long way since those days but is destined to go further. Don’t be surprised, therefore, if this unassuming character is the next big thing to impress at Stade Louis II.

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