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Yet another player made his official debut in today’s game. Royal, Memphis, Eric Garcia and Nico did so against Real Sociedad, we had Demir on for the first time against Athletic Club and on Sunday against Getafe at the Camp Nou, it was the turn of Pablo Páez Gavira, known professionally as 'Gavi'.
The 17-year-old had already featured in the preseason, but when he came on as a 75th minute substitute for Martin Braithwaite, this was his first taste of competitive football with the senior team, and the 2-1 scoreline also meant he got to enjoy a winning start.
Just 24 days after his 17th birthday, it also means that he becomes the fourth youngest player to appear for Barça in La Liga. Only Vicenç Martínez, Ansu Fati and Bojan Krkic were younger when they got their first games.
A thousand things went through my head“
"I am very happy” he told the Barça TV cameras afterwards. “I’m the happiest kid in the world. It’s a dream come true. A thousand things went through my head and I was a bit nervous as I was warming up, but I went out to give it the max. I remember all the coaches I've had and how they helped me to develop.”
Ronald Koeman also spoke about the youngster’s debut, saying that “I have been very happy with him from the very first day. It was a difficult game, but going on for a game like that was very important. I have no doubts about the young players we have because they’re very good.”
Culer since 2015
Gavi arrived at the club 2015/16 from Real Betis, first playing for the U14A team under Marc Serra. After rising through the ranks, he started turning out for the U19A team last season, and also got to play some games for Barça B. After joining the first team squad for the preseason, Koeman was immensely impressed and has included the teenager in all three of his Liga call-ups so far, finally opting today to give him his first run-out on the pitch.
And Camp Nou is some pitch! We look forward to seeing him grace it many more times in the future.
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