LaLiga 2018/18: 5 young players to watch out for
LaLiga is one of the most watched leagues on the planet, and it is clear why. Scintillating football is played week-in, week-out in Spain, and there are some superstars in LaLiga who really draw in the crowds from around the world.
Last week, the new season got underway, and it was as entertaining as ever. Last season’s title winners Barcelona got off to a winning start, beating Alaves 3-0, as Lionel Messi scored twice.
Real Madrid began the post-Cristiano Ronaldo era with a 2-0 win over Getafe. It was also a winning start for new manager Julen Lopetegui, who replaced Zinedine Zidane after his shock resignation just days after the Champions League final. Atletico Madrid, who are likely to be up there come the end of the season, began their campaign with a 1-1 draw with Valencia.
There are still a lot of questions to be answered by these sides this season. We will have to wait to see how Real will cope with the exit of Ronaldo, who has been such a crucial player for them over a number years at the Bernabeu. Barcelona romped to the title last year and came within two games of going unbeaten. But they were well short in terms of European success, so it will be interesting to see whether they plan to focus more on that this season.
LaLiga is known for the superstars, the likes of Messi and Ronaldo that we saw last season. However, there seems to be a lack of that this season, particularly given the departure of Ronaldo to Juventus. There do seem to be some excellent players coming through the ranks though, and here are five youngsters to keep an eye on this season.
#5 Arthur (Barcelona)
Barcelona paid £35 million to bring Brazilian midfielder Arthur to the club this summer. He signed a six-year deal at the club after joining from Gremio and will hope to make a big impact at the Camp Nou. Arthur is likely to have a big role to play at Barcelona this season, particularly given the exits of fellow midfielders Paulinho, Andres Iniesta and Andre Gomes.
He is still only 21 but looks to be perfectly suited to Barcelona’s style of play. He is excellent on the ball and is an accomplished passer. His 93.1% passing accuracy was the most by any player in the Brasileirao last season, and he will hope to put in a similar level of performance at Barcelona this season. He will be a like-for-like replacement for Andres Iniesta, so has big boots to fill, but is more than capable of doing so.