Real Madrid has found a new super-sub heading into 2022

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Real Madrid is sitting atop the summit of LaLiga standings and they also won their group in the Champions League as I previously argued they will. Now, Real’s prime focus would be on the upcoming Derby against cross-town rivals Atletico Madrid. The Copa del Rey too will catch up pace shorty and there are a series of crucial matches scheduled in the Supercopa de Espana. To say the least, the start of the New Year will again be a tight one for Real Madrid.

As such, it is important to have players who can have impactful performances off the bench for the team. Real Madrid and its fans have long associated the word ‘super-sub’ to one special player in their squad, the Spaniard Marco Asensio. And, the type of golazos he is capable of scoring off the bench, who wouldn’t? Take a look at Marco Asensio’s finessed finish into the far top corner against Inter, if you haven’t already.

However, the recent smart buys that Real Madrid has been making and their older veterans who aren’t completely capable of playing for all 90 minutes are strengthening Real Madrid’s bench. Isco, for example, is one such player who has made a few impactful performances this season off the bench. To summarize, Real Madrid’s bench strength is evidently increasing and Carlo Ancelotti has quite many options at hand.

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Out of these, one specific player has caught my eye. A deal completed on the deadline day, Real Madrid’s latest statement acquisition, Eduardo Camavinga is making a name for himself in the short cameos that he is featuring in so far. He went off to a blazing start to his Real Madrid career with a goal off the bench. Then, he had an assist in the Champions League to hand them their first win of the competition on the very first day. The craze over the French prodigy has boiled down a bit since then. But, I think otherwise.

Eduardo Camavinga, Real Madrid (Photo by Diego Souto/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images)

Eduardo Camavinga helps the team in different ways

Camavinga may not come off the bench and score goals and make assists regularly. In fact, since his involvement in goals from the first two appearances he hasn’t had any. But, that is the least of my worries. Camavinga is helping the team out differently. Football is a team game and when you are a youngster trying to make your way up the pecking order then, sticking to what you’re asked to do is the best idea.

Camavinga is a prospect for the future and right now, he is doing a crucial job of giving some respite to the squad’s most crucial veterans like Luka Modric and Carlos Casemiro. He is capable of anchoring the play in the middle of the pitch. He makes good crisp passes and undoubtedly his passing accuracy that is nearing the 90s has been a great boon to Real Madrid.

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Moreover, he is capable of handling different situations. Mostly, when he is introduced to any game, Real usually has the match sealed. His job at that time becomes very different, he just needs to see the game through, anchor the play in the middle of the park and avoid mistakes. Secondly, he has been tried at both Luka Modric and Casemiro’s positions and it’s safe to say he gets the job done on both positions. His versatility again has been of great help.

Eduardo Camavinga, Real Madrid (Photo by Denis Doyle/Getty Images)

Camavinga can create chances

Now coming to the part where he needs to influence matches and make an impact. Well, he has been doing that too. In the games where he started his long ball records are pretty good. Take a look at the stats for games like the ones against Osasuna or Mallorca in the league. In that unfortunate loss against Sheriff in the Champions League, Camavinga had quite a great game individually with eight long balls, five tackles, four fouls drawn, and one key pass, per WhoScored. Alas, Real couldn’t get that win.

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According to Fbref, he is also creating chances for the side with a 0.22 goal and assist per 90 in the league. The figure goes up to 0.67 per 90 in the Champions League while the expected figures are just 0.2. That speaks well about how Camavinga has done his best to make an impact on the very few minutes that he is getting and the very little urgency he has been surrounded with.

Not to forget, he does a few things that stats will have a hard time reflecting. His turns on the ball and skipping past challenges whilst evading the opposition press is a sight to behold. He does manage the Bernabeu faithful to applaud his tricks time and again. He also pumps a lot of energy on the pitch whenever he steps in and tries to make things tweak for Real Madrid to see off the remaining time and seal the games.

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As I said, football is a team game and the role that Eduardo Camavinga has now been entrusted with is an important one too. And, he is shining at it. It’d especially be a boon to have for Real Madrid as they move towards the business end of the season and once fatigue starts to set in. He surely is the new super-sub.

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