On Monday evening, Takefusa Kubo made his Getafe debut, replacing defensive midfielder Nemanja Maksimović with 64 minutes on the clock, with the contest away at Elche all square at 1-1. The Japanese was brought on by José Bordalás to make an impact, and that’s exactly what Kubo did.
It took him five minutes. A nice dribble and a shot at the end of it, forcing a save by Édgar Badía, though Jaime Mata was presented with a gift when Badia spilled Kubo’s shot, as Mata scored to make it 2-1. Kubo continued looking dangerous. His cross then led to a foul on Angel Rodriguez in the box, and the visitors were presented with a penalty – which Angel dispatched to seal the win.
It wasn’t just encouraging, it was Kubo! And exactly what you should expect from him. We’re not talking about a player with limited potential, this is a player who if Real Madrid develop properly, the 19-year old will spend a decade as a mainstay in the Los Merengues starting XI – he’s that good. For me, out of all the talents Madrid have invested in over the last 3-4 years, Kubo remains the finest of them all.
And now that they have successfully cancelled Kubo’s unnecessary loan to Villarreal, there are two other loans which need urgent attention. Reinier Jesus has only made four Bundesliga appearances for Borussia Dortmund, totaling 136 minutes played in four months, and he’s yet to start. The teenager was sent on a two-year loan to the German outfit, though, it’s a team which simply has far too much talent in the areas in which the Brazilian thrives.
Questioned about Reinier’s situation and a potential termination, Dortmund’s sporting director Michael Zorc said: “We have a lot of competition in attack. We basically don’t want to give him up. Of course, I’ll listen to everything. If someone is dissatisfied because he has too few opportunities, then you talk to each other, but we will not take the initiative ourselves.”
The most sensible thing for Madrid to do is to recall him, and send him to a club in La Liga for the rest of the season, with an option of extending it throughout the 2021-22 campaign. Perhaps Real Valladolid would be a good move, as it’s a team which could switch to a 4-4-2 to accommodate him and even play him on the wing or as a false nine in their usual 4-3-3, two positions he was comfortable in at Flamengo.
Both moves, Kubo to Villarreal and Reinier to Dortmund are failures, and it all comes back to the planning done by the club. If you’ve invested so much in them, you’ve got to at least give them a chance to spread their wings. The sooner Reinier returns to Spain and plays in La Liga, the better it is.
And as for Luka Jovic, who’s reportedly closing in on a return back to Eintracht Frankfurt for the remainder of the season on-loan, that’s a decision which should work out for the club. It has come at the right time too. Far too often Madrid have wasted precious time in making these clinical decisions, but for a youngster who clearly has talent, he needs to step onto the pitch to showcase what he’s about.
Zinedine Zidane himself asked for the signing of Jovic, and surprisingly, he still didn’t get many opportunities under the Frenchman. Perhaps there’s more to it, behind the scenes, but from what I can see, the Serbian always trained well, always did plenty of good things during the training sessions, but just wasn’t given enough chances to shine. Zidane should get criticised for this, because at times, his Madrid team are so one-dimensional, and the very fact that the defending champions struggle to score goals, while having Jovic rotting on the bench, is an inexcusable misjudgment by Zidane.
It does look like Jovic and his Real fairytale is over though, bless him. The chances are, he’ll do well at Frankfurt, and return to Madrid for pre-season, before being permanently sold elsewhere. Or maybe he impresses so much, that the club and Zidane decide he has to stay, and that he now starts ahead of Karim Benzema – who by the beginning of the 2021-22 season, will be in the final year of his contract?