Kendry Paiz Shatters Records in South American Football
From the beginning of the match, Kendry Paiz was on the field for nearly 70 minutes. He played 36 passes, among which 86 percent were accurate. He scored one goal and provided another pass that could have led to a goal, although it didn't result in one.
He also made 7 accurate passes from long distance despite the windy conditions. His successful dribbling occurred 5 times during the game. It might seem like a remarkable performance, but it's not entirely surprising. In the 2026 World Cup qualifiers in South America, Kendry Paiz played for the Ecuadorian team at just 16 years old.
Marcelo Bielsa, known as the "Coach of Coaches," led South American underdog Ecuador to a surprising 2-1 victory over Uruguay. In this victory, Paiz scored Ecuador's second goal in just 60 minutes of play. He had already contributed to their first goal in the first half. This exceptional performance showcased the young talent's potential.
On Twitter, the statistics-based football account 'MisterChip' revealed that by playing in this match, Kendry Paiz became the youngest player ever to represent Ecuador in the jersey at the age of 16 years and 131 days. He also set a record by scoring in an international match at such a young age.
Despite his young age, Paiz excels in dribbling, similar to Argentina's star Lionel Messi. His dribbling skills have been honed from a young age by watching South American legends like Messi and Neymar. European clubs are already keeping an eye on him.
When he turns 18, he is expected to join an English Premier League club, likely for an estimated £17 million, according to British media. Interestingly, in Independiente del Valle, they call him "La Maria." Why? Like the Argentine winger, Paiz is a left-footed player and has a similar style.
However, Paiz's records are not just about style; they are about breaking records with his skills. In February, he became the youngest player to be recognized and scored in Ecuador's top league, at just 15 years old.
And just last month, he set another record as the youngest player ever to score in a South American World Cup qualifier, at 16 years, 22 days old. This feat surpasses the previous record held by Maradona, who achieved it at 16 years, 4 months, and 7 days old.
In the record books, Paiz now finds himself alongside Maradona. A Sky Sports correspondent tweeted that he became the second youngest player to represent his country in a World Cup qualification match, at 16 years, 4 months, and 8 days old. Maradona holds the record for being recognized at 16 years, 4 months, and 7 days old in the same tournament.