In recent years, Federico Valverde has developed into one of the best central midfielders in the world. The Uruguayan international is a key player for head coach Carlo Ancelotti, and he is expected to be so at Los Blancos for many years to come.
However, Valverde’s story could have been so different. Back in 2016, he was playing for Penarol in his homeland when he was awarded a week-long trial at Premier League giants Arsenal. Unfortunately, as MD have reported, he failed to impress then-head coach Arsene Wenger, who rejected the chance to sign Valverde.
The 25-year-old went on to sign for Real Madrid that same year. He started at Castilla, before a loan move to Deportivo La Coruna helped him break into the first team at Los Blancos – firstly under Julen Lopetegui, and then Zinedine Zidane.
Arsenal will surely be ruing having missed out on Valverde, but their loss is undoubtedly Real Madrid’s gain.