Real Madrid’s fabled La Fabrica academy has provided European football with an array of young talents. Many have gone on to make a name for themselves at Real Madrid, but a fair few top talents also slipped through the cracks.
Achraf Hakimi is one of Madrid’s bright homegrown talents that managed to achieve success elsewhere.
Despite the Moroccan’s exceptional talent, he departed the Santiago Bernabeu in 2020 due to a lack of first-team opportunities under manager Zinedine Zidane.
Since leaving, Hakimi has established himself as one of Europe’s most promising attacking full-backs.
While the player currently plies his trade with Paris Saint-Germain, his agent has come out to reveal Hakimi’s sentimental feelings towards his boyhood club.
“Achraf has spent 5 years outside Real Madrid, but Real Madrid will always be his home. Somewhere in his heart there is Real Madrid that has been formed since he was a child. If Real Madrid want him, logically we will listen.” Alejandro Camano, the player’s agent, told AS.
Despite garnering a great deal of experience in Europe’s top clubs such as Inter Milan, Borussia Dortmund, and PSG, it is no surprise that nostalgia paints strokes of sentiment upon his canvas of recollection.
However, with no intentions of straining relations with their current club, Camano was quick to clarify the player’s commitment to the PSG project.
Camano claimed, “Great players always see Real Madrid as a target. Achraf has lived and smelled the dressing rooms there and knows the club from A to Z. He has been shaped by the values, but we want to be loyal to the club to PSG.”
“If you ask him, you will see that he is a Real Madrid fan but our project now is the Paris project. From the heart, he can talk about Real Madrid, but his colours now are the colours of Paris who made a great effort for him. It is occupied 100% in his mind.” he further said.
Reports of the €70 million-rated full-back looking for a transfer move this summer have been on the fly, which explains the agent’s insistence on indirectly providing Madrid as an acceptable destination.
Former Arsenal defender marvels at Real Madrid new signing’s positive start: “It’s crazy”
Former Arsenal defender Lauren Bisan-Etame, who now happens to be a FIFA technical expert, has broken down Jude Bellingham’s perfect start to his new life at Real Madrid, saying that although there is a lot of pressure on the midfielder, he seems to be thriving on it.
Bellingham has made a perfect start to his Real Madrid tenure following his €103 million from Borussia Dortmund this summer.
Despite being a midfielder, the 20-year-old has already scored six goals in seven outings across all competitions, with three of them being match-winners.
Thriving under the pressure
While speaking about Bellingham’s adaptation, Lauren said that the midfielder seems very comfortable with the pressure he has on his shoulders.
“We’ve seen so many players go to Real Madrid, and once they put that shirt on, they shrink,” Lauren explained as quoted by El Desmarque.
“There is a lot of pressure that comes with the jersey and Bellingham seems comfortable with that pressure, he likes the pressure. The fact that he is such a young player with so much personality is fantastic for him,” he added.
Lauren, who also worked as an Arsenal ambassador, further explained that the reason why Bellingham has scored six goals at this rate is because of his positional awareness.
He added that the midfielder is capable of sniffing a goalscoring opportunity and the fact that he has connected so well with Toni Kroos and Federico Valverde is simply brilliant.
“He’s already scored five goals in the league, he’s got a winning goal in the Champions League and he’s only 20 years old – it’s crazy. What I like most about him is that he has the instinct to be in the right position at the right moment and knows how to sniff out opportunities in the area.
“In addition, he has connected very well with Toni Kroos and Federico Valverde in the Real Madrid midfield,” he explained.
Lastly, the 46-year-old admitted that if he had gotten an opportunity to play for Real Madrid at 20 years of age, he wouldn’t have the courage to take the step.
“In my time as a player, young people couldn’t play for Real Madrid because they didn’t have patience. So in my time, there is no way I would have chosen Real Madrid instead of the Premier League.
“Now it seems that Real Madrid has changed its strategy and is signing young talents from all over the world. They are mixing youngsters from Spain with youngsters from all over the world. As it is now, I would sign for Madrid, but in my time, no way!”