Eduardo Camavinga may not have been the French international Los Blancos set their sights on for the summer transfer window. Kylian Mbappé dominated the rumor mill, but Camavinga will enter the Santiago Bernabeu this season.
Real Madrid purchased Camavinga from Stade Rennais for $47 million. Furthermore, this figure includes guaranteed add-ons. Beginning this season, the 18-year-old played on the last year of his contract. The Brittany-based club decided to cash in on their wonderkid before he left as a free agent next season.
The rapid ascension of Eduardo Camavinga
Camavinga was the youngest person to sign a professional contract and the youngest to make a first team debut for Rennes when he was 16 years and four months old on April 6, 2019.
His breakout performance came in a 2-1 victory against reigning Ligue 1 champions, Paris Saint-Germain. The teenager won the Man-of-the-Match award by simply dominating the center of the game. Also, he broke up play with his tackling and dished out the game-winning assist in the 48th minute. Suddenly, the soccer world took notice of another special talent developing in France.
Eduardo Camavinga continued his impressive form and received Ligue 1 Player of the Month for August 2019. As the season carried on, Camavinga became a critical player for his club. His versatility in the middle of the pitch helped him to contribute in whatever role his team needed.
Initially, Stade Rennais used him as a holding midfielder. The Frenchman sat in front of the defense and broke up play. However, manager Julien Stéphan realized the way Camavinga could dribble past opponents and drive the ball into the final third. Eventually, he converted Camavinga into a box-to-box midfielder. Moreover, his touch, awareness and passing ability displayed that he could be used as an attacking midfielder in situations when Rennes needed to score a goal.
In a COVID-shortened-2019/20 season, Rennes finished third and qualified for the Champions League for the first time. However, their time in the most prestigious club competition did not last long. One point from six games saw them knocked out in the group stage. Domestically, Rennes fell to sixth in Ligue Un play. Stéphan stepped down from his role during on March 1 when the club lost four consecutive matches and seven without a win.
Eduardo Camavinga planned on playing in the Olympics and was called up to participate. Rennes blocked the move because they wanted to resolve his future and prevent any major injury from occurring.
Manchester United, PSG and Real Madrid all came out as suitors for the French prospect. Furthermore, Los Blancos made the only bid for the midfielder. And, now, Camavinga will feature at the Santiago Bernabeu.
International Record Breaker
Camavinga set himself on a path to being the next great all-action midfielder for the French National Team. Legends like Patrick Vieira and Jean Tigana, along with contemporaries N’Golo Kante and Paul Pogba have their DNA in the youngster.
He made history by being the youngest player to be selected by France since 1932. After his debut, Camavinga felt blessed by being given the opportunity.
“First of all, I feel joy and pride for my family and for all French people. I have no idea where this confidence comes from, I have often played with older players, and it surely allowed me to have a greater maturity to play with them,” said the teenager to TF1.
On October 7, he made his first start for his nation and became the youngest person to score a goal for France since 1914. A cheeky overhead flick in the six-yard box opened the scoring in a 7-1 victory over Ukraine. Camavinga impressed one of the midfielders he aspires to be like.
“He is very at ease; he is a little dancer. It is good because he is confident. He has confidence in his qualities. He is a very good youngster; I like him enormously,” said Paul Pogba after the friendly.
The midfield trio of Luka Modric, Toni Kroos and Casemiro are coming to an end. Luka Modric, Toni Kroos and Casemiro will only boss LaLiga midfields for so much longer. Their legendary reign yielded two LaLiga trophies and two Supercopas. Internationally, the trio picked up three consecutive Champions League crowns and four FIFA Club World Cups.
Modric is a free agent at the end of the season. Now, it appears the club found his successor.
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