Lamine Yamal, the youngest player to ever feature for FC Barcelona in La Liga, has now made his full debut for the club at just 16 years and 38 days old.
In making his full debut in Sunday’s game against Cádiz CF, Yamal also became the youngest player to start in La Liga in the 21st century.
“I think he’s so mature and can already make the difference for us,” Barça head coach Xavi told reporters after the match. “We have to take care of him, but I think he’s ready and I’m not afraid to trust youth.”
To cap off Yamal’s historic start, Barça scored two late goals to seal a 2-0 win against Cádiz to claim its first win of the 2023-24 La Liga season.
Despite not being at its best, Xavi’s team found a way to win with youngster Pedri opening the scoring in the 82nd minute before Ferran Torres doubled Barça’s lead with an injury-time strike.
“It looked like the ball was not going to go in today and it did,” Xavi told Movistar Plus.
“We predicted it was a day to keep a lot of possession and in the second half we were more patient, were better in positional play, took risks and a pass from [İlkay] Gündoğan to Pedri gave us what we needed.”
Getting a win was vital for Barça after the La Liga champion struggled in its opening game of the season against Getafe CF.
Barça drew 0-0 in it’s season opener where it was also reduced to 10 men after Raphinha was dismissed in the first half.
However, the Brazilian’s sending off gave Yamal an opportunity to star and the teenager proved to be a bright spark in Barça’s win on Sunday.
Last season at the age of 15 years, nine months and 16 days, Yamal made his Barça debut after coming on as a substitute for Gavi during a 4-0 victory against Real Betis in April.
Real Mallorca forward Luka Romero, who is now at AC Milan, is the youngest player to make his La Liga debut, according to Reuters.
At the age of 15 years and 229 days, Romero came on as substitute during Mallorca’s 2-0 defeat by Real Madrid in June 2020 to break a longstanding La Liga record held by former Celta Vigo player Francisco Bao Rodríguez – more commonly known as Sansón – who made his first league appearance in 1939 aged 15 and 255 days.