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Mikel Oyarzabal - The Most Underrated Player in Europe?

Oyarzabal is heavily underrated
Oyarzabal is heavily underrated
Modified 10 Nov 2020, 13:25 IST

Very few players have the quality to hit double digits in both goals and assists over a league campaign. Only nine players across the top 5 European leagues managed it last season, including Mohamed Salah, Lionel Messi, and Kevin De Bruyne. Real Sociedad winger Mikel Oyarzabal also made the list. The Spaniard recorded 10 goals and 11 assists in La Liga last term, with only a certain Argentine in Catalonia setting up more goals.

A veteran at the age of just 23
A veteran at the age of just 23

Oyarzabal is Real Sociedad's captain, and he's only 23-years-old. He's played more than 20 league games in each of the last 5 La Liga seasons and his output has remained steady.

Oyarzabal is one of the most well rounded attacking players in the league right now, and can on both wings, up front, and as an attacking midfielder.

Real Sociedad and their captain both have had a fiery start to the season
Real Sociedad and their captain both have had a fiery start to the season

This season, both Mikel Oyarzabal and Real Sociedad have started with a bang. The club tops the La Liga table heading into the international break and have played some truly scintillating football

Oyarzabal has been the chief architect of this success. He currently heads the scoring charts and also won the La Liga Player of the Month for October. Coming through the youth setup at the Anoeta, Oyarzabal has 9 caps for Spain and has scored thrice for the national team.

His performances merit the headlines, the hype, and the transfer rumors. Surprisingly, there has been a lack of them, especially outside Spain. According to the CIES football observatory, Oyarzabal has been the best player in La Liga for the last 3 months.

Mikel Oyarzabal must be on the radar of Europe
Mikel Oyarzabal must be on the radar of Europe's best
"In San Sebastian, it's not Messi, it's not Ronaldo, it's not even club legends like Antoine Griezmann or Xabi Alonso. Everyone there wants to be Mikel Oyarzabal," says journalist Alexandra Jonson.

The diminutive playmaker avoids the spotlight and plays for a club that is deep-rooted in its own unique culture. Oyarzabal loves the club and the culture he was brought up in. While there is no doubt that he is good enough to play for Europe's biggest clubs and compete for trophies, Mikel Oyarzabal is in no hurry to leave.

Published 10 Nov 2020, 13:25 IST
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