It takes a tough footballer to survive at the Santiago Bernabeu. Real Madrid have signed many talented youngsters over the years, note Marca, but only the sturdiest characters have survived. The midfield, for instance, has been the sacred triumvirate of Casemiro, Toni Kroos and Luka Modric ever since the three teamed up in 2015. But now that it’s getting older, fresh blood is needed more than ever, and players have stepped up.
During Madrid’s 6-1 evisceration of Mallorca in La Liga last night, Carlo Ancelotti opted for a midfield three composed of Eduardo Camavinga, Fede Valverde and Marco Asensio. The three come to an average age of 22, exactly ten years younger than the Casemiro-Kroos-Modric axis. With Camavinga sitting, Valverde breaking and Asensio operating as the mediapunta, it was a system that seemed to bear great fruit indeed.
Asensio, who’s actually from the Balearic Islands like last night’s opponents, scored his first-ever hat-trick for Madrid while Karim Benzema chipped in with another brace; Isco got in on the act late on. The result meant that Madrid leapfrogged city rivals and last season’s champions Atletico Madrid to go top of La Liga.