Over the last few weeks, we have seen a lot of movement in our top two youth teams — Castilla and Juvenil A. Every year we see an exodus of players and a huge influx of new ones, which poses all sort of peculiar challenges for the managers. This year is no exception.
First, let's go through the list of players leaving and arriving in Castilla.
Real Madrid Castilla
Players going out:
Deportivo La Coruňa — 1-year loan, no option to buy
After a superb campaign in an otherwise very subpar Castilla team, Valverde shined in the FIFA U20 World Cup. Maybe those wonderful performances in South Korea helped him earn this loan or maybe not. However, one thing was sure — nobody was really that excited about him going to Depor, because they had decent depth at his position and there were legitimate fears that he might end up like Borja in Wolfsburg.
So far, things are looking great for Fede at Depor. He was given a starting role by Pepe Mel, and in those games, he was one of Depor's best players.
Oh, and he also did this...
Aleix Febas Pérez
Real Zaragoza - 1-year loan
Aleix Febas, the star of Castilla over the past two seasons, has been given a platform to step up, improve, and succeed in Real Zaragoza. I'm sure most of Castilla’s followers were hoping for a loan in La Liga, but Aleix Febas to me looks like a late bloomer and a loan in Segunda could be more beneficial to him.
Carlos Abad Hernández
CD Tenerife - end of a loan
Carlos Abad, who arrived two years ago from Tenerife, was the starting goalkeeper for Castilla. It wasn't because he was a really great keeper, but because there was a severe lack of any other options. During his time in Castilla, he did display some impressive saves, though.
Alexandro Marco Craninx Joostens
Sparta Rotterdam - permanent transfer
Alex Craninx was rumoured to be the first team's third keeper, but ultimately Craninx decided to leave Madrid and sign a three-year contract with Sparta Rotterdam. He is a good and talented keeper, but his Real Madrid history was riddled with injuries, which prevented him from showing his potential.
Freiburg - 1-year loan
The Austrian U-21 international decided to take the same route as Carvajal and Mayoral did before him. Lienhart and his entourage chose German middle-table club FC Freiburg. Unlike Carvajal and Borja, Lienhart won't have problems settling in, as Germany and Austria are quite similar countries with a shared language.
Mario Hermoso Canseco
RCD Espanyol - permanent deal (rumoured fee 400.000 EUR)
I have to be honest, I didn't expect Mario to be loaned or sold to a good team, nor to a mid/top-level La Liga team. However, I'm always glad to see our canteranos given a chance to prove themselves in the best league in the world.
Alejandro Salto Sánchez
RCD Espanyol B - permanent deal
Salto was never a prominent player for Castilla. He was always a backup option as the minutes played showed (1600 minutes over two seasons), and it's natural that Real Madrid were looking to offload him. Espanyol's academy is certainly a good place to land and it should help him grow.
Lucas Torró Marset
CA Osasuna - free permanent deal, Real Madrid have 50% of future sales
Lucas Torró had one problem during his time in Castilla. And the name of the problem was Marcos Llorente. He played only 300 minutes in 2015/16 season, so he decided to go on loan to Real Oviedo, where he successfully claimed a starting spot.
Enzo Fernández Zidane
Deportivo Alavés - permanent deal (rumoured fee 3 million EUR), Real Madrid have a buyback option
Enzo was a frustrating player to watch in Castilla. At times, you could see the Zidane touch and grace, but overall he was a very inconsistent player with baffling decision making. All of that makes the rumoured fee seem astonishing.
Javier Muñoz Jiménez
Lorca FC - 1-year loan
Javi Muñoz followed the fate of his fellow Castilla midfielders and was loaned out to Lorca FC. Javi was an okay option to have on the bench, but ultimately he was nowhere near good enough to claim the starting spot.
Álvaro Jiménez Guerrero
Getafe CF - permanent deal worth 1 million EUR
Alvaro Jiménez proved himself last season with Getafe, so it was understandable that they decided to activate the option to buy, and Real Madrid received one million euros. I'm sure that Álvaro will be a good attacking option for otherwise a usually boring Getafe team.
Cristian Josué Artiles Cedrés
Villarreal B CF - permanent deal
Cedrés stayed for two seasons in Castilla hoping that eventually, he will break into the starting lineup. However, in the minutes he was given, he didn't really force himself into the starting lineup. He is a good dribbler, but he lacks the end product. He chose Villarreal and it's a good choice. Villarreal are well-known for their work with their academy.
José Carlos Lazo Romero.
RC Recreativo de Huelva - 1-year loan
Lazo, who spent last year on loan at Villarreal B, is now once again on the road. He’s joined Recreativo de Huelva on a one year loan. Lazo wasn't a very prominent player for Villarreal last season and his production with Castilla wasn't good enough for a winger. I hope he discovers his goalscoring instinct.
Olympiacos - end of loan
Vergos was a last minute signing last summer. He came on loan from Olympiacos to provide cover for Sergio Díaz who was then shoved to the left wing. Vergos chipped in with five goals in total, which is far cry from Mayoral+Diaz duo the season before that. He won't be missed.
Players coming in:
Arturo Molina Tornero.
Atletico Levante UD - 1-year loan (rumoured option to buy worth 200.000 EUR)
Arturo Molina was a crucial player for Atletico Levante UD in their promotion winning campaign. He arrived on loan from Real Murcia and his good performances made Levante activate the option to buy him. His experience will be needed, because Solari will have to find a new midfield for next season.
Adrián Mancebo Serrano
UD San Sebastián de los Reyes - permanent deal for free
Mancebo was the first announced signing for Castilla. He has a lot of experience playing in Segunda B and Castilla need depth. His first game in Castilla wasn't very impressive, but it was the start of a pre-season. He might turn out to be a useful player and since he didn't cost Real Madrid a penny, it's a gamble worth taking.
Cristo González Pérez
CD Tenerife - permanent deal, transfer fee - 750.000 EUR
This signing created quite the buzz around Castilla and Segunda followers. Cristo González made his first team debut in Tenerife at 16 years old. He is a skillful striker and he reminds me a bit of Sergio Díaz. He looks to be best suited for the second striker role and thus there is a danger that Solari will try to turn him into a two-way winger...
Juvenil A players:
Every year, there is a lot of decisions to be made about Juvenil A players. They're playing in the U19 league and since there are no longer eligible for that league, management has to decide who to loan out, who to sell and who will they promote.
Only the cream of the crop is promoted and from last year's Juvenil A team, these players were promoted:
Óscar Rodríguez Arnaiz, Francisco Feuillassier “Franchu”, Dani Gómez, Manu Hernando Álex Martín, Toni Robaina Segura, Mink Peeters
There are still a number of players that came back from the loans. Some will definitely stay such as Álvaro Fidalgo and Dani Fernandéz, while others are looking very likely to leave such as Raul de Tomas and others.
Due to the regulation, any player born in 1998 had to be moved from Juvenil A.
Players coming in
The only signing that Real Madrid made for Juvenil A is Augusto Galván who costed Real Madrid one million euros plus two million in variables. Even though Augusto is registered with Juvenil A, he will be a full-time member of the Castilla squad. Real Madrid did the same with Martin Ødegaard and Fede Valverde.
There are a lot of intriguing players coming from Juvenil B and C, but I have to specifically mention Miguel Baeza. He is an attacking midfielder with a great eye for a goal. Last season, he was the star of Alvaro Benito's Juvenil C and named the Man of the Tournament and the Top Scorer of the prestigious Alkaas International U17 Cup which Real Madrid won.
Other players to watch out for are Moha (the goalkeeper, but also the midfielder promoted from Juvenil B), César Gelabert (an attacking midfielder) and Gorka Fidalgo (RB) who I hope will be finally fit to play.
However, Juvenil A are still lacking a good reliable goalscorer. Their current strikers are very injury prone and didn't play much over the last few seasons. This is definitely the key area where Juvenil A must improve to have a chance of repeating last season's campaign.
Provisional Juvenil A squad for 2017/18. A lot of movement,but it's only promotions and no new signings (Augusto G. will play with Castilla) pic.twitter.com/h8KbeLCkuv— Ondra Paul (@OndraPaul) July 27, 2017
Players going out:
Juvenil A transfers out
|Player name||Position||Type of transfer||Destination|
|Player name||Position||Type of transfer||Destination|
|Alejandro Sotillos Miarmau||CB||loan||SD Logroñes|
|Álvaro Maldonado Nogueras||RB||loan||CDA Navalcarnero|
|Carlos Cobo Guillén||LB||loan||Real Valladolid B|
|Javier Hernández||LB||loan||CD El Ejido|
|Álvaro Bravo Jiménez||CM||loan||CF Fuenlabrada|
|Gregorio López Teruel||CM||permanent||CA Osasuna Promesas|
|Álvaro Martín Alcántara||LW||permanent||CCD Cerceda|
|Jesús Rodríguez Ortuño “Echu”||LW||loan||CD El Ejido|
|Javier Llario Moscardó||ST||loan||CDA Navalcarnero|
|Ousama Siddiki||ST||permanent||Leeds United|