Teenage full-back reflects on his first official appearance for FC Barcelona, in the Champions League against Bayern Munich
Álex Balde’s dream of making his official debut for FC Barcelona finally came true on the night of 14 September 2021. The result may have been anything like the one he wanted, but all the same it was a very special experience for the 18-year-old to play at Camp Nou, where he replaced Jordi Alba for the last quarter of an hour.
"The debut was a dream come true despite the result” he said afterwards. “I have been working long and hard since I came to this club and I’m very happy.
"I didn’t expect to get on. But when Jordi asked to come off, I got 30 seconds to warm up and then I was on. So many things were running through my head, but I was really ready for it.”
“From here on, I hope to get more playing time and to gain experience, keep training with the lads and learn from the best.”
Blaugrana since he was 8
Born 17 years ago in Barcelona, Alejandro Balde joined Barça in 2011 from the Espanyol youth system at the age of eight. He is part of the 2003 generation, but has always played above his age groups, winning the league with teams at all levels.
Last season, despite being an U18, he played at left-back for Barça B, appearing in 16 games as the team won promotion to Primera RFEF. His good performances have earned him several chances to train with the senior team and on during the preseason he finally got to play for them in the friendly against Gimnàstic Tarragona at the Estadi Johan Cruyff.