‘Varane at 19 is unique’

Bixente Lizarazu has enthused at Raphael Varane’s progress this season, after the Real Madrid man debuted for France on Friday.

The 19-year-old played the full 90 for Les Bleus in last week’s 3-1 win over Georgia and is again expected to feature on Tuesday as the French host Spain in a potentially decisive World Cup qualifying group I clash.

Varane’s rise to the top has caught the eye of Lizarazu, who told reporters this week of his surprise in how soon it has come about.

“We are talking about someone who at Real Madrid has unseated Pepe and Pepe, with his credentials, is a great centre-back,” reflected World Cup-winner Lizarazu to reporters.

“Varane’s performance against Manchester United was extraordinary. And against Barcelona.

“You could not expect him to reach that level at just 19. He is unique.

“Madrid with him and Sergio Ramos may have a couple of centre-backs for many years to come.

“Ramos for me, and Thiago Silva, are the two best central defenders in the world.”

Tags France Lizarazu Spain Varane