Player Profile: Marco Asensio

Louai Hassan                      
Contributing Writer

Who is Marco Asensio? Currently, the striking 21-year-old Spanish football player is turning heads as a player for Real Madrid. His mother named him after the Dutch legend Marco van Basten in hopes that he would turn into a player of van Basten’s calibre.

In 2014, he moved to Real Madrid from RCD Mallorca, but was loaned back to Mallorca and RCD Espanyol before returning to Madrid in the summer of 2016. Barcelona, rivals of Real Madrid, once sought him out before he joined Los Blancos, but had failed to pay his €4.5M fee on time. Ironically, today he is worth what would amount to €100M.

What did Asensio do to receive this amount of publicity? In the 2016-2017 season, Asensio’s contribution to Madrid was mostly carried out off the bench, yet he still managed to add his touch during the last 15 minutes of the game, and he did that with perfection. He additionally managed to score on many major occasions, including the Champions League final against Juventus and his solo-run goal in the final of the Copa del Rey against Sevilla.

Asensio launched the 2017-2018 season with a scream against Barcelona in the second leg of the Spanish Super Cup, directing the spotlight onto himself and his much talked-about left foot, which has anecdotally been said to possess magical powers. Indeed, this left everyone speechless, including his coach Zidane and the Catalonian team.

“I enjoyed Marco’s goal, as I like football, and with a goal like this, I can only be impressed, like everyone who enjoys football,” said Zidane.

From then on, he was unstoppable. He became the man-of-the-match in Madrid’s game against Sevilla. Scoring twice with an outside-the-box shot, and a wonderful ninetieth-minute curling free-kick past the keeper, the game ended 2-2.

It doesn’t end there. Asensio was called up to join the Spanish national team for the first time during the 2018 World Cup qualifying set of games. Additionally, he got a starting role against Italy, a crucial game that ended 3-0 in the Spanish team’s favor. Throughout the game, he showed off his high quality passing ability and impressive touch, while also making dangerously quick runs behind the Italian defense, despite failure to score.

What does Asensio’s future hold? In Madrid, the future of Asensio is bright as he is getting a lot of playing time and starting off many of their games, and this comes as a result of his ability to prove his true starting lineup potential.

Where will he fit in the squad? Isco seems to be in good form now. However, the Welsh star Gareth Bale seems to be lagging behind. As for Spain, he is said to be their next star player, leaving the fans excitedly waiting for the 2018 World Cup in Russia.

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