REAL MADRID

Stars of the future: Real Madrid goal machine Iker Gil

Signed from Real Zaragoza in 2017, the 15-year-old Spanish striker has scored in excess of 100 goals for Real Madrid's youth teams.

Stars of the future: Real Madrid goal machine Iker Gil

Iker Gil is the outstanding goalscoring prospect in Real Madrid’s academy.

Indeed, before describing the 15-year-old as a player any further, it’s best just to let his figures speak for themselves: since arriving at Valdebebas in 2017, the striker has scored well over 100 goals in three seasons (the last of which has been curtailed by the coronavirus pandemic).

Snapped up by Real Madrid after impressing at Real Zaragoza

Gil started scoring goals in his hometown, Zaragoza, terrorising defences for local clubs La Muela, Óliver and La Amistad before taking the first big step in his career when he joined Real Zaragoza’s youth set-up in 2015. Having continued his impressive progress there, he caught the eye of Real Madrid.

He wasn’t overawed by signing for a club of Los Blancos’ stature, and hit the ground running with 33 goals in 24 league matches for Real Madrid’s Under-13s. However, even those numbers would pale in comparison to his exploits the following season, when he kicked on with 51 in 24 for the Under-14s: more than two a game.

And Gil had again enjoyed an extremely smooth age-group transition this term before play was halted, netting 32 in 18 for the Under-15s.

Gil exploits rewarded with call-up to Julen Guerrero's Spain Under-15s

A quick, powerful player who offers lively off-the-ball movement and doesn’t need a second invitation to shoot when he gets into the area, Gil is a headache for every defender he comes up against. Unsurprisingly, his scoring figures at Madrid have led to international recognition, Spain Under-15s coach Julen Guerrero handing him six caps that have brought four goals.

Next season, he is due to spearhead the Real Madrid Under-16s’ attack - and, although he'll belong to the age group below, he is also aiming for a call-up to Spain’s Under-17s, who in 2021 will be aiming to qualify for the FIFA Under-17 World Cup, to be held in Peru in October next year. It won’t be easy, but if he keeps up his current scoring rate, you wouldn’t rule anything out.