It was an afternoon of debuts on Sunday at Mestalla. Up to six of the players who got minutes had never competed in Primera before. Some, even four days ago wrongly counted, were playing with the subsidiary or were part of the youth team. This is the true portrait of the squad, which mixes the experience of the most veterans with a good group of younger guys with a capital hunger, but still with a curriculum that needs to be filled with experiences. Míchel Sánchez, the coach, used 16 footballers to face Valencia. Of all of them, only five were over thirty. Four were in the eleven: Juan Carlos (34 years old), David López (33), Samu Saiz (31) and Juanpe (31). Cristhian Stuani joined them, already in the second act, who climbs up to 35.
What happens is that the remaining eleven are all much younger. Only Aleix Garcia, with 25, and Yangel Herrera, Santi Bueno and Castellanos who are 24, are a little older than the rest. Because Riquelme has 22, compared to Valery’s 23. Young people with a long way to go. Miguel Gutiérrez totaled 21, one more than Couto’s 20, who had never competed in the highest category of Spanish football, but had played in Primera in Portugal and the Europa League. Terrats also made his debut and did so at the age of 22. Not too long ago, he was poached in Montilivi from Sant Andreu to work under Axel Vizuete and be part of a subsidiary that competed in the Tercera RFEF. He convinced Francisco in Segona and Míchel has given him continuity, even a division above.
Arnau Martínez and Òscar Ureña deserve a separate chapter. Both came off the bench. They are 19 years old. Arnau, from the first team for all intents and purposes, already has a certain journey in professional football, despite making his debut in Primera on Sunday. He is one of the most important assets right now in Montilivi. Ureña may have less of a poster, but he already offered glimpses of his quality the year before Segona and this summer he is accumulating arguments to win a place in the team and not be loaned out. In Mestalla it was also premiered in the elite.