Gavi gives glimpse of Spain's future with debut showing

by 24britishtvOct. 7, 2021, 1 a.m. 18
-

Soccer Football - UEFA Nations League - Semi Final - Italy v Spain - San Siro, Milan, Italy - October 6, 2021 Spain's Gavi in action with Italy's Manuel Locatelli Pool via REUTERS/Marco Bertorello

MILAN, Oct 6 (Reuters) - Midfielder Gavi became Spain's youngest ever international in Wednesday's Nations League semi-final victory over Italy and immediately showed why coach Luis Enrique had the faith to throw him into the side at 17 years and 62 days old.

Despite having made only three starts for his club Barcelona, Enrique opted to start Gavi in a three-man midfield against the European champions at the San Siro.

Up against the likes of Marco Verratti and Jorginho, Gavi showed no signs of being overawed, producing a debut of rare confidence in the 2-1 win that set up a final against Belgium or France on Sunday.

Composed on the ball, confident throughout and always looking to bring Spain's attacking players into the game, Gavi's performance left his coach purring.

"We already talked about how he is an unusual case," said Luis Enrique.

"He is playing like in the backyard of his house. It is a pleasure to see a player with this quality and personality. He is the future of the national team like many other players but he also showed he is part of the present."

The teenager broke a record that had stood for 85 years -- Athletic Bilbao's Angel Zubieta had made his debut for Spain in April, 1936 at the age of 17 years and 284 days in a game against Czechoslovakia.

"Nothing too much for him, he has the personality and quality to play at this level," said Luis Enrique, who had faced criticism from the Spanish press over his squad selection.

"The game played out beautifully for us but that was a match of two rivals going at it hammer and tongs with their best strengths on show," he said.

"My team looked dangerous throughout, we pressed well and I'm pretty happy. With only a session-and-a-half of training behind us this wasn't easy but the players' attitude was sensational."

-

Related Articles

HOT TRENDS

T20 World Cup: Group 2 preview

by 24britishtvOct. 24, 2021, 3 a.m.2
HOT TRENDS

Baggies beat Robins in delayed match

by 24britishtvOct. 24, 2021, 1 a.m.2
HOT TRENDS

England crush West Indies in T20 opener

by 24britishtvOct. 24, 2021, 1 a.m.2
HOT TRENDS

TV: Professor Brian Cox returns with new BBC series Universe

by 24britishtvOct. 24, 2021, midnight2
HOT TRENDS

Ange Postecoglou names Celtic side for St Johnstone clash

by 24britishtvOct. 23, 2021, 10 p.m.2
HOT TRENDS

Exactly when the clocks go back this year

by 24britishtvOct. 23, 2021, 10 p.m.2
HOT TRENDS

Strictly fans in tears as Dan Walker pays emotional tribute to wife

by 24britishtvOct. 23, 2021, 9 p.m.2
HOT TRENDS

F1 United States GP qualifying - Start time, how to watch & more

by 24britishtvOct. 23, 2021, 9 p.m.2
HOT TRENDS

Report: Leeds United 1-1 Wolverhampton Wanderers

by 24britishtvOct. 23, 2021, 8 p.m.2
HOT TRENDS

Sara and Aljaz fail to impress Revel Horwood on Strictly

by 24britishtvOct. 23, 2021, 8 p.m.2
HOT TRENDS

Clocks go back 2021: When and why they do

by 24britishtvOct. 23, 2021, 8 p.m.2
HOT TRENDS

Rodrigo earns Leeds late point against Wolves

by 24britishtvOct. 23, 2021, 7 p.m.2
HOT TRENDS

Spoilers: Guilty Dev makes Aadi a surprising offer in Corrie

by 24britishtvOct. 23, 2021, 7 p.m.2