Zinedine Zidane was very clear when he first saw Marco Asensio training that he wanted him for the Real Madrid first team, it didn’t matter that he was just 19 years old at that time because he clearly had the talent to define an era.
The player has responded with great play and decisive goals and perfectly encompasses the difference that exists today between the current Real team and Barcelona.
One wins titles, the other loses them.
One signs players that are young, hungry and talented whilst the other loses players that they said were going to be Messi’s successor.
Real have a balanced squad but Barcelona have no clear direction.
Most pertinently, one secured Asensio for less than four million euros, the other scorned him for less than that.
On Sunday night, Asensio produced another stellar performance and silenced the Camp Nou as only the best players are able to do.
He scored a goal that will bring the Supercopa de Espana to Real Madrid and struck a blow that can be definitive to a Barcelona full of doubt and which has led players like Busquets to request reinforcements publicly.
Zidane has always believed in Asensio and the Frenchman, who knows a little bit about football, told him that he had not seen a left-footed player as good since Messi.
That prediction, and the patience of the Mallorcan, are the ingredients which are seeing Asensio well on the way to becoming a world-class exponent.
The leaders of Real Madrid, that is the sports management and Zidane himself, have stopped possible signings because the youngster and his teammates are a group that are well above a Barcelona that depends solely and exclusively on the inspiration of Messi for everything.
Whether Asensio fulfils Zidane’s prophecy remains to be seen, but his is a trajectory that continues upwards.