New Real Madrid acquisition and 18-year-old Japanese attacking midfielder Takefusa Kubo showed the world his sensational abilities in the Copa America group stages, putting in a scintillating display yesterday against Ecuador.
A former player in the famed Barcelona academy – La Masia, Real Madrid pulled off a major coup by signing up the youngster in June 2019, on a five-year deal.
After scouts in Japan recognised his sensational talent at a very young age, Kubo was invited to join La Masia in 2011. The youngster went on to become the league’s top scorer in the 2012-13 season with Barca Alevin C (Under 11s) and went on to graduate into the Barca Infantil A (Under 14s) team.
Tragedy struck in March 2015 when FIFA sanctioned Barcelona for having violated the international transfer policy on under-18 youths, forcing Kubo to return to Japan and join FC Tokyo. The youngster has prospered at home since forcing Real Madrid to come calling for his mercurial talents.
Japan, along with Qatar, were the two invitee nations from the Asian confederation for the ongoing Copa America in Brazil. The Samurai Blue has fielded a largely Under-23 side in preparation for next month Summer Olympics but managed to almost qualify for the quarter-finals, thanks in no small measure to their 18-year-old prodigy.
Kubo was instrumental in Japan’s final group game against Ecuador, running rings around the South Americans’ defence and seemed to have even scored a winner deep into stoppage time, only for it to be ruled offside.
Takefusa Kubo vs Ecuador. 18 years old. pic.twitter.com/sCOCZhjlOq
— Andres (@MiIitao) June 25, 2019
Real Madrid will begin their pre-season in the International Champions Cup in USA with a match against Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich, slated for 21st July. Kubo will join up with Real Madrid Castilla for the 2019-20 season.