All of Fede Valverde‘s coaches during his senior career have spoken wonderfully about him. Santiago Solari did so when he was at Castilla, Real Madrid‘s B team. Cristobal and Clarence Seedorf did so at Deportivo La Coruna when he was there on loan. Julen Lopetegui, Solari again and Zinedine Zidane have done since he joined the Real Madrid first team. All of this praise, though, didn’t square up with the minutes he was given by these coaches. When he was given minutes he often seemed inhibited, which was strange considering he has played 16 times with Uruguay. Perhaps this was the one reservation people had about the midfielder, the fact that he didn’t dare to do more even though was capable of it.
Valverde does have the sufficient ability to influence Real Madrid‘s play more, as he showed in his excellent match against Granada. Able to destroy and create, his incredible physical abilities allow him to cover a lot of the pitch and his ease on the ball allows him to get the play going, something he does while looking unhurried. Helping attack with his one-touch play or quick runs is his top virtue. Like a good Uruguayan, he can also win the ball back in a tough way and doesn’t hold back in his intensity or when it comes to pressing.
He is a complete midfielder, just as effective in defence or in attack, where he is coming out of his shell more and more. He hasn’t even shown what his shooting is like yet. Valverde has an advantage as there is little competition in his position in the centre of the pitch. He can replace Casemiro, occupy Toni Kroos‘ role or even fill in for Luka Modric. He has Zidane‘s confidence, but now just needs a bit more self-confidence to really explode. So be even bolder, Fede Valverde.