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The 0-0 draw at Getafe not only ensured that Barça will be playing in the Spanish Super Cup next year, but also marked the long-awaited debut for La Masia graduate Mika Mármol, who came on for the final minutes wearing number 41.
Replacing Alejandro Balde, standing in for Jordi Alba this evening, he played at left back, although he can also take the centre back role when required.
That means no fewer than five players have made their debuts under Xavi Hernández, namely Ilias, Jutglà, Álvaro Sanz, Estanis and now Mika Mármol. Earlier in the season, Gavi, Nico, Abde and Balde also got their first starts, making a total of nine players that have stepped up from the youth system to the first team this term. Plus Eric Garcia, who also had a past at La Masia.
FC Barcelona have now used an extraordinary 38 different players in official matches this season. And with everything now decided, the coach may still choose to give a run-out to other new names against Villarreal next week.
After the game, Mika said that "this was a dream come true. It was only a few minutes but the most important thing is that this was my debut. When you get called up, you always think you might get a few minutes, but it’s difficult to get them in a squad like the one at Barça. But all the work we do at Barça B is in the hope of getting a debut."
“Xavi just told me to go out and enjoy myself and to get the ball. I dedicate this to my parents, my family and most of all my friends who always support me. I will keep this shirt and these shorts forever.”