Javi Sanchez’s crash courseMARCANovember 20, 2018
José A. GarcíaMARCA En Español Santiago Solari arrived on the Real Madrid bench with a number of problems facing him and few were as extreme as the injury crisis the club had found itself in, with Dani Carvajal , Raphael Varane , Marcelo and Jesus Vallejo out.
Alvaro Odriozola and Sergio Reguilon were natural and obvious stand-ins on either side, while Javi Sanchez was drafted in as central cover.
The youngster has debuted in three competitions in under two weeks, appearing in LaLiga Santander, the Champions League and the Copa del Rey, accumulating 177 first-team minutes in the process.
Solari and Sanchez have history, though, as the defender was a key Castilla player under the Argentine’s watch.
His Real Madrid debut came alongside Sergio Ramos against Melilla before playing against Viktoria Plzen in Europe as Solari looked to protect his captain from a booking and subsequent suspension.
What was most unexpected, though, was his appearance against Celta Vigo when another injury gifted him another 45 minutes in which he impressed.
Javi Sanchez has shown himself to be ready for duty and could return to the pitch on Saturday as Real Madrid take on Eibar , where there is still a chance that Ramos may miss out after having withdrawn from national team duty due to a muscular injury.
What is clear is that Sanchez is ready for the challenge and it could be argued that he is one of the best ‘signings’ of the season since Solari has taken the reins.
He was integral for Castilla and, while he has to assume a different role with the first team, he has shown that he is capable of filling in when needed and has provided proof that there is a future being made in the youth team.