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Friday 19 July 2019

Real's teen star Rodrygo prepared to wait

Rodrygo Goes
Rodrygo Goes

Real Madrid's new E45 million signing Rodrygo is aware of the huge competition for places and said that he was prepared to spend time in the reserves as he beds into his new surroundings.

Rodrygo, 18, agreed to join Madrid last year shortly after breaking into the first team at Santos, the Brazilian club that produced Pele and Neymar.

Last year he became the youngest player to score in the Copa Libertadores, South America's equivalent of Europe's Champions League, missing school to net for Santos against Uruguayan side Nacional.

Rodrygo joins Madrid a year after fellow Brazilian teenager Vinicius Jr moved to the Spanish capital, storming into the first team after spending his first few months with Real's reserve side Castilla in the third tier of Spanish football.

Madrid's latest arrival said he was prepared to do the same.

"Madrid will always have the best players in the world and I'm ready to do whatever the club wants, to play in the first team or Castilla," Rodrygo said at his presentation at the Bernabeu.

"Here the pressure is bigger than anywhere else and Vinicius has told me that I have to be patient. But I'm young and I will be. Things are going to develop naturally."

Rodrygo is the fifth player to join Madrid in the close season as part of an ambitious squad rebuild that has already cost more than E300m.

Real are looking to make amends for a woeful last campaign in which they finished an unprecedented 19 points adrift of La Liga champions Barcelona.

Coach Zinedine Zidane has signed Brazilian defender Eder Militao for E50m, Serbian striker Luka Jovic for E60m, French right back Ferland Mendy for E48m and Belgian forward Eden Hazard for E100m.

Rodrygo said he did not expect his first season at Madrid to be plain sailing but was excited to be joining the 13-times European champions.

"I'm in my first season in Europe and there might be difficult moments but I'm prepared for that and I'm sure I'm going to have a lot of happy moments," he added.

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