Less than a year ago, Vinicius Junior (Rio de Janeiro, 2000) was a tormented boy. The networks were primed with his failures in hand-to-hand, with his dribbles in the air, with his predilection to choose the worst possible decision. He was 20 years old, with a bright future ahead of him, but he had only signed six goals and seven assists in almost 50 games in the season; his future at the Bernabéu seemed cloudy. However, summer arrived and with it, Carlo Ancelotti. The veteran Italian coach, after a start to the League in which he was surprising coming off the bench, handed over the keys to the left wing to the young winger. And Vinicius, an incessant subscriber to trial and error, responded with 14 goals and nine assists between the League, Champions League and Super Cup in the first round.
With a happy and persistent Vinicius, a cyclone of chances, impossible dribbles and runs and, above all, goals and assists, they dazzled a crowd that little by little, with reluctance at the start and with passionate madness at its decline, became hooked. to Ancelotti's Madrid. In addition, the best news was that Vinicius's football, the same one that in past seasons seemed to drive Benzema to despair, paired perfectly with the plethoric version of the French striker. Real Madrid smiled, strolled through the League smugly and rode through Europe without any pressure from the hand of its new and strange partner.
Spring came, the unlikely comebacks at the Bernabéu followed one another like a gale and the team, whatever happens in Paris and like Capello's last Madrid, will be in the imagination of their fans forever. The experience deserves it. Also, in these months of madness, Vinicius has been a leading actor. Although his numbers already support him (21 goals and 20 assists in all competitions), it is his insistence on dribbling and his ability to agglomerate defenders that makes him fearsome. He is a creator of chaos and uncertainty in the most uniform football that ever existed.
On the other hand, the young winger also dominates statistical sections alone. Without going any further, Vinicius is the player who has made the most successful dribbles in the League (96, 26 more than second-placed Carrasco). He is also the footballer with the most pipes in the competition with 14, one more than Muniain.
But in the comparison that the attacker stands out the most is between his counterparts, the best U-21 players on the European scene. The Real Madrid winger, between goals and assists in the League and the Champions League, has a total of 41 goals generated; above Haaland's 36, Adeyemi's 31 or Foden's 24.
Against Liverpool, in the Champions League final in Paris on May 28, the carioca has the opportunity to complete his work in his best season in white. Klopp's men know him well: they already suffered from his speed in the quarterfinals last year, where they were eliminated with a goal from Vinicius in Valdebebas, in what was perhaps his redemption with the goal.
Be that as it may, whether Mbappé arrives at the white club or not, the Bernabéu has one of the most unbalanced players on the planet on its left wing, a diamond in the process of polishing with a ridiculous age capable of lifting Real Madrid from the sofa. And those are big words.