Antonio Blanco: Real Madrid’s chosen Casemiro backup

18 Sep 2020

Afew weeks ago, Real Madrid and Adidas held a photo shoot with the representatives of each of the club’s teams.

Stars from the football first teams, both men’s and women’s, and basketball side were all present.

Antonio Blanco was chosen to represent Castilla, underlining how highly he’s rated at Los Blancos.

Real Madrid see him as their prized possession in the academy and he’s knocking harder and harder at the door to the first team.

The 20-year-old midfielder will be included in Zinedine Zidane‘s squad for Sunday’s LaLiga Santander opener against Real Sociedad.

Blanco, who has spent seven years at La Fabrica, is decorated at youth level, winning the European Championship with Spain at U17 and U19 level.

This summer, he was also part of the Real Madrid side which won the UEFA Youth League under Raul.

At the moment, though, he’s the only direct replacement for Casemiro that Zidane has available to him.

During Tuesday’s friendly against GetafeBlanco played the second half in the Brazilian’s holding role in midfield, flanked by Toni Kroos and Fede Valverde.

It remains to be seen whether the youngster will be given his first-team debut at the Reale Arena on Sunday.

Zidane isn’t one to throw academy graduates into the mix and hasn’t handed a debut to one since he played his son, Luca, against Villarreal in May 2019.

If he’s going to promote anyone, it may as well be the jewel of the Real Madrid academy and, in the Spanish Football Federation’s eyes, the future of the Spanish national team.

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