The sky is the limit for Fede Valverde. At just 19 years old, and months after making an impression at the Under-20 World Cup, the central midfielder made his debut with the Uruguay national team on Tuesday evening.
Valverde wins Suárez' praise in Paraguay win
And it wasn’t a quiet debut. The man on loan at Deportivo from Real Madrid scored a 76th minute effort as Óscar Tabárez’ team beat Paraguay 1-2 in Asunción. The victory sets Uruguay well on the way to qualification for the 2018 Russia World Cup.
Valverde’s blend of maturity and humility has won him the admiration of Luis Suárez, who took to social media after the match to congratulate his team-mate on a fine international bow.
Deportivo starting spot the next step
Valverde will now return to La Coruña with an eye on a place in Pepe Mel’s starting line-up. He could not play in the opening-day defeat to Real Madrid at Riazor due to a clause in his loan contract, and was an unused substitute in the following match away at Levante.
Valverde’s international commitments will limit his time on the training ground this week. Yet it is hard to believe that the wait for his debut with the Branquiazul will last beyond this weekend’s match against Real Sociedad. The ex-Peñarol youngster’s performances in pre-season earned him the trust of Mel. Now, it is time for him to showcase his talents in the league.