Reckless Real Madrid Youngster Shows How Not To Impress On Your Debut
Some players are just destined for greatness from the moment they step on the pitch, their debuts so magnificent the entire stadium recognizes the kid on display is special. Like a 17-year-old Alan Shearer netting a hat trick against Arsenal in his debut, some introductions are seminal events that will never be forgotten.
Jesús Vallejo did not have such a debut for Real Madrid in the Copa del Rey on Thursday.
The 20-year-old Spanish defender was shown a straight red for a dangerous tackle in the 90th minute of Real Madrid’s 2-0 victory over Segunda B side Fuenlabrada in the first leg of their Round of 32 tie.
Vallejo had done a decent job of keeping the home side scoreless but with one imprudent challenge threw it all away. His lunge was late, high and, impressively, caught both the right and left limbs of Fuenlabrada’s Miguel Ángel Atienza.
Midweek cup matches are often a great opportunity for youngsters to show their boss what they’re capable of while the stars rest in the stands, but Vallejo did himself no favors in his first career appearance with Real Madrid. He’s fortunate his team already had a two-goal (and one-man) advantage late in the match when he made his indiscretion.
The referee was busy on Thursday night, issuing a red card to each team and awarding two dubious penalties to the visiting champions.
On the first, Achraf Hakimi was dragged down just outside the box but won a penalty converted by Marco Asensio. On the second, Theo Hernández decided to fall down while his defender was nearby and the referee awarded another penalty, which Lucas Vázquez snuck into the right corner.
The match was played at Fuenlabrada’s Estadio Fernando Torres, which, yes, was named after that Fernando Torres. While El Niño never actually played for Fuenlabrada, he was born there. The return leg will be Nov. 29 at the Bernabeu.