Lunin, a Stakhanovist waiting for his moment

Sports

By CAPosts 18 January, 2021 - 03:18pm 86 views

On the eve of Kings of last year Andriy Lunin traveled with his father to Asturias from Valladolid. There, where he was on loan from Real Madrid, he hardly played, as had happened the previous season at Leganés, and a proposal came to him to transfer the loan to Real Oviedo , Second Division, where they said they guaranteed him minutes. But the Lunin, especially the father, did not trust. "They wanted me to tell them face to face," recalls Javier Rozada, then Oviedo coach. “We all went to eat: Lunin, the father, the translator and Arnau [the sports director]. I told him that I was going to play it all, and we convinced them. ”

After lunch at El Tizón, a restaurant with traditional cuisine in the center, next to the official Oviedo store, the Lunins watched that match at the Tartiere night against Malaga (1-1) and returned to Valladolid. Ten days later, the goalkeeper appeared for the first time in the club's sports city, El Requexón, worked for half an hour and entered the list for the next game, in Almería, where he started. As it was also in another 19 games until the end of the season

Madrid bought Lunin, a 21-year-old Ukrainian, in the summer of 2018 for 8.5 million euros paid to Zorya. The goalkeeper, who was still 19 years old, was one of the recruits in the plan to attract young talent to build the team of the future guided by Juni Calafat. The Ukrainian intermediary Oleg Smaliychuk, who had discovered it a year before at Dnipro, offered it for months free, but without success, to several Spanish clubs: “Levante did not want it even for the subsidiary; but Juni did make the effort to go see him and she liked it. While others are sleeping, he works, ”says the agent.

Lunin signed for Madrid convinced that he would be the second goalkeeper behind Keylor Navas, who was 32 years old. But shortly after the club hired Thibaut Courtois , and there began a failed period of assignments (Leganés, seven games in a course; Valladolid, two in between) that had its only happy stage in Oviedo, where his participation was fundamental for the club kept the category (20 games, 20 goals conceded, 6 clean sheets). After that, Madrid added him to their first squad last summer. However, more than 900 days after his signing, 2019 U-20 world champion and best goalkeeper of the tournament, he still has not made his club debut in an official match, waiting for Zidane to give way to him this Wednesday ( 21.00, DAZN) in the Copa del Rey against Alcoyano, Second B.

Despite the long journey that has not yet led to the premiere with Madrid, Lunin does not lower his arms. Not a bad gesture. You know where you have come from and you know your path will be difficult. He does not step back. It has never broken down and there is no one who dares to suggest it to him, ”says a person who sees him working daily in Valdebebas. "For him training never ends," he says. This is how he has been since he put his signature on the contract next to that of Florentino Pérez. In Leganés he went to train on holidays until he was forbidden to enter the facilities. But according to La Nueva España , then he began to jump the fence with his father to sneak in.

In Oviedo, where he is described as a “Stakhanovist”, he still misses the place he chose to live. Instead of a large apartment in the center or a comfortable chalet on the outskirts, he settled with his girlfriend in an apartment on a narrow street in the center of Lugo de Llanera, the town of 3,000 inhabitants on the outskirts of Oviedo where he Santi Cazorla raised, between an industrial estate and an airfield. An unusual place for a footballer. But very close to the sports city of Oviedo, where the physios remember him because he always made them leave late: he did not spare his gym time after training. And at the beginning of the lack of refinement, when each team had their entry and exit times marked in El Requexón, their persistence caused several times to misalign the general schedules, with lower categories waiting for them to finish working. "Obsessive level super gridded", they remember at the club. "No one has ever seen him laugh," they say in Valdebebas.

"He trusts himself, has a lot of personality and is a winner, but he needs continuity to polish details that only matches give you, such as measuring when to go out on a ball at the back of the defense ”, says Rozada. "It needs parties."

Source: Elpais

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