Spain taking advantage of Barcelona’s flowing talent factory
Subdirector de SPORT
There is an intriguing fact for Barcelona fans, related to Lamine Yamal’s debut as a player for the Spanish national team, becoming the youngest to make his international debut at the age of 16 years and 57 days. As with most records, there always seems to be someone who surpasses it. While Gavi’s debut was historic, Lamine’s is even more so.
The interesting part is that five of the eight youngest players to debut for the Spanish national team are from Barcelona. The list, in order of age, includes Lamine, Gavi, Pedro Regueiro, Zubieta, Fati, Eizaguirre, Bojan, and Pedri. It’s significant to have so many players from Barcelona recruited by Spain at such a young age, highlighting Barcelona’s strong commitment to nurturing talent
A source of talent
It’s true that in times of economic hardship, the youth academy becomes an essential resource to compensate for the lack of opportunities to make signings. However, if the focus is on young players, and they deliver, credit goes to many: the players themselves because of their talent, the coaches in the youth academy who work with them, put them on the field, and train them, and the first-team coach who dares to give a chance to a young player who is still a child. It’s also commendable how these young players demonstrate maturity to earn the trust of all parties to the extent of convincing the national team coach to call them up, even if they have only played a few games for their club, as is the case with Lamine or as happened with Ansu Fati, who was a starter for Spain before his club.
Barcelona, as a whole organization, deserves credit for being a continuous breeding ground for talent and for providing opportunities. It’s also praiseworthy to recognize the courage of national team selectors who call up these young talents, make them feel important, and ultimately see them become key players. If Spain is a powerhouse in many sports, it’s because of coaches like Xavi, Luis Enrique, or De la Fuente taking the baton from others who also did a great job, such as Guardiola or Del Bosque.
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