Pedri’s infinite marathon: he comes back ready to play now

Pedri celebrates a goal with Barcelona last season.

Pedri celebrates a goal with Barcelona last season.

This Thursday marks eleven months of the first game of Pedri with Barça. It was a friendly against Nàstic, on September 12, where he already left some clues of the abundant talent he possessed. Nobody, not even he, could imagine the marathon that was coming to that teenager from Tegueste, who by then had not even turned 18. That was the first of the 76 games (71 official) that he was going to play in a season crazy in which, in addition to being fixed for Ronald Koeman, it would be too with the absolute in the Eurocopa and the Olympian at the Games. Although the club had planned to give him a few extra days of rest, the best young player of the last European Championship wants to return to training this Thursday in the face of the needs of a team lacking offensive resources.

The last Pedro Canario who arrived at the age of 17 for Barça had a brilliant debut with the first team, scoring in all competitions in the year of the sextete. Although with fewer titles, hardly a Cup to throw down the throat in the last year of Messi, Barcelona fans, in general, and Koeman, in particular, fell in love with Pedri at first sight. And that boy who until then had not played a First Division game made an immediate niche in the team with his humility off the field and his impudence, maturity and talent within him. He played all the league games except the last one, in which with the lost titles, the Dutch coach gave him the afternoon off against Eibar. He had only rested before then against Ferencvaros and accumulated 3,526 minutes between the League, Cup, Champions and Super Cup.

But while several of his teammates went on vacation, the end of his season was far from coming for that genius who was driven away by a snowfall from Madrid: there was a double for the Eurocup and Games. TO Luis Enrique The three matches in March against Greece, Georgia and Kosovo (qualifying for the World Cup) were enough for him to be clear that in the continental tournament it would be Pedri and 10 more. The Barça midfielder played everything, including three extra time. Only the last minute was saved in overtime against Switzerland.

“Not even 18-year-old Iniesta has made a European Championship like this. Let many more join Pedri’s bandwagon,” said Luis Enrique, after being eliminated in the semifinals. Pedri, in addition to being chosen the best young player of the tournament, he was also included in the ideal eleven.

Luis de la Fuente He also gave him the keys to the engine room in Tokyo and only saved him one of the three overtimes, in the semifinals against Japan, where he left the field exhausted in the 83rd minute. Despite the fact that so many minutes and kilometers took a toll on his legs played the 120 minutes of the final against Brazil.

Now, despite accumulated fatigue, he offers to be in the first meeting of the season. Not only to be able to experience the heat of the Camp Nou stands for the first time, but also because of the need for a team in the frame (Dembélé, Ansu Fati, Agüero, De Jong, Lenglet, Gavi, Mingueza and Ter Stegen in the infirmary and without knowing when you will be able to enroll Memphis, Eric Garcia and Emerson) and in ‘shock’ after the departure of his captain. A Messi who had found his best partner in that young island man. A society that has only lasted one season and that had not been able to be chanted by the fans.

Now Pedri will have to find a new recipient of his fantasy passes. Waiting for you to recover Ansu Fati, with whom he must command the future of Barça, will try to associate with Griezmann and Memphis Depay, as long as the club manages to release salary mass to be able to register the Dutch striker. After running 5,025 minutes from his debut against Nàstic to the Olympic final, he takes a step further. When the team recovers they may have a rest, but for now their marathon continues.


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