Real Madrid have a gem in their hands right now. There is simply no one they’d trade Vinicius Junior for, as they’ve made it clear before. PSG wanted to include him in the deal for Mbappe on multiple occasions, but it was always a no brainer for Real Madrid, even when he wasn’t playing this well.
This season, we’re seeing the maturity of Vinicius Junior. We’re seeing him turn into the player everyone thought he was going to become one day, which is why Real Madrid made a massive splurge of cash to secure his services for so many years.
Now, on the brink of a new contract, Vinicius Jr is proving that he was worth every single penny and more. He’s showing how good he is, and how much potential he has to become even better in the seasons to come. If you think this is anywhere near his prime or potential, I promise you, you’re wrong.
Vinicius can become one of the world’s best players very soon, and he’s showing the hunger to become the best by doing stuff that only a superstar can do. In fact, I will go on record and say that Vinicius Jr is the most improved player (MIP) of this season so far in all of European football. He’s shown the most improvement on the previous season, and if there was an award for it in football like there is in the NBA, he’d probably be the favorite to win it, in my opinion at least.
Real Madrid’s Vinicius Junior has taken a huge leap, statistically and otherwise
Currently, in all competitions, Vinicius Jr has nine goals and five assists in 16 games for Real Madrid, per FBref. That’s a massive improvement on the six goals and four assists in 44 games last season. In fact, if you add up his goals per 90 minutes from his previous three seasons at Real Madrid (0.55 goals per 90 in three seasons combined), it still is nowhere near his numbers for this season (0.69 goals per 90 in one season alone). It’s phenomenal how big of a leap Vinicius has taken in just one season, and it’s going to be very interesting to see how much better he goes from here. Like I mentioned in this article, he’s also second in La Liga in xG overperformance,
Vinicius is also in the 98th percentile in Europe (in his position) for progressive carries per 90 minutes, with 10.83 to his name. He’s also in the 96th percentile for touches in the attacking penalty area per 90 with 7.68 to his name. The Brazilian is averaging more key passes per 90, more shot-creating actions per 90, more goal-creating actions per 90, and so much more than he ever has in his entire career. It’s astonishing.
If you forget statistics, for now, the things that he brings to the table, no one else does in the whole squad. There is so much chaos and panic among the opposing defenders whenever Vinicius has the ball, and it often results in goals against the run of play. He used to do this in previous seasons, but he’s doing it even more now. Vinicius brings Real Madrid out of tough situations, and that really can’t be put into statistics, can it?
He’s not the only one that has shown improvement on last season. There are plenty of players in Europe that have, and will continue to do it. But, I don’t think there’s anyone doing all that at this high level, with this much consistency and with this much hunger to get even better. Let me tell you one thing, he’s only going to get better if (when) Kylian Mbappe joins Real Madrid, and even though he may need to do some adjustment, he will form a partnership with the other two Frenchmen that can prove to be unplayable when the players are really feeling it.
Are there players better than Vinicius Junior at the moment? For sure. Is there anyone in the world that is more in-form than Vinicius is? Probably. Has anyone other than Vini shown this much improvement at this level? No chance in hell.