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An enormous prospect is emerging from Barcelona's famed youth system and his name is Gavi; a 16-year-old midfielder with the talent to become a real star.
The teenager, who made his debut for the club in their pre-season win against Gimnastic on Wednesday, continued his run in the first team set-up when Ronald Koeman named him on the bench against Girona at the weekend.
After replacing Yusuf Demir - another exciting prospect - in the second half, a composed Gavi ran the show from midfield in the pre-season friendly, showcasing glimpses of brilliance throughout. Just check out his highlights below.
There's something special about Gavi when he runs with the ball man....
- Xabhi ✪ (@FCB_Lad) July 24, 2021
Pablo Páez 'Gavi' vs. Girona FC (24/07/2021) • Pretemporada 2021/2022. :star2:
Another game for Gavi in the first team. He should finish the match with assist. What a talent he is... Enormous potential. pic.twitter.com/wBDvKfBnFM
- Piotr Guziński (@Nyctophile1_) July 24, 2021
Gavi, who has already made his debut for Barcelona B in the third division of Spanish football, didn't look out of place amongst a sea of seasoned professionals. In fact, he was arguably Barca's best player for large spells.
The youngster looked tidy in possession and when given the opportunity, he was not afraid to try and play a cutting forward pass, as you can see below.
There is no doubting his technical ability and confidence on the ball.
Oh my Goodness,, Pablo Gavi :gem:
16 years of age ffs@FCBarcelona promote him pic.twitter.com/aP3keCdWiu
- Luis Llorente (@_Sportify) July 24, 2021
Franc Artiga, a former coach of Gavi's at La Masia, praised the teenager in a recent interview.
"He is so technically gifted," he told Goal. "He is capable of changing what he is about to do in tenths of a second, and improvising under any circumstance of the game.
"It is very difficult to find a player with these abilities, and with this speed of execution."
Artiga is just one of many admirers of the former Real Betis academy product. Here are a few reactions from Twitter during and after the Girona clash.
Barcelona have no excuse to get into future financial trouble when they've got an unbelievable academy pumping out prospects so consistently.
Gavi looks to be a machine at 16 - genuinely hope they don't buy and play random, aging CMs.
Use your homegrown talent.
- EiF (@EiFSoccer) July 24, 2021
To people who have seen Gavi develop over the years and aware of his supreme talent, this comes as no surprise. The boy is 16 years old and already dominating a midfield full of adults. This kid will give cules all over the world a lot of joy for the next two decades.
- La Masia (@Youngcules) July 24, 2021
Gavi, just 16 years old, but you wouldn't know it. Outstanding composure from him, he didn't look out of place one bit. He has a huge future ahead of him :star: pic.twitter.com/gvmViWSbpm
- TalkFCB :copyright: (@talkfcb_) July 21, 2021
At the age of just 16, Gavi showed his personality during his unofficial debut with the first team. Koeman gave him an opportunity and he didn't disappoint. He showed his ability to understand and control the game as a left interior, revolutionizing the attack. [md] pic.twitter.com/vSXf426zsM
- barcacentre (@barcacentre) July 22, 2021
Barcelona manager Koeman has already signalled his intent to use the club's array of young talent ahead of the new campaign.
"We are always ready for young players to come in, they are the future of the club," he told the club's official website.
"There are young players like Balde, Nico and Gavi and the new signing Demir who could all be great players.
"You have to give them time to get used to the pace of the first-team. We will see in the future which ones we will use."
Koeman is delighted with Gavi and will keep him in first team dynamics during this pre-season. [sport] pic.twitter.com/kq0YGNhqXs
- barcacentre (@barcacentre) July 25, 2021
Remember the name, folks.
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