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Dublin: 15 °C Thursday 20 June, 2019
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Real Madrid win the race to sign highly-rated Japanese teenager

Takefusa Kubo joins the Spanish club after previously spending time in the Barcelona youth system.

Kubo has already played senior international football for Japan.
Kubo has already played senior international football for Japan.
Image: Getty Images

REAL MADRID HAVE won the race for Japanese sensation Takefusa Kubo, with the youngster agreeing a switch to the Santiago Bernabeu having previously spent time with Barcelona.

Having celebrated his 18th birthday on 4 June, the youngster has been freed to return to Europe. A spell at Barca was previously cut short after they were found to have breached regulations regarding the acquisition of players under the age of 18.

He had been in Catalunya since August 2011, but headed home in March 2015. Kubo had been highly-regarded while taking in a spell at the famed La Masia academy system.

His outings for Barca’s youth teams earned him a billing as ‘the Japanese Messi’. Those at Camp Nou had been hoping to be the ones to benefit from his obvious potential, but he has now linked up with a Clasico rival.

Real Madrid said in a statement on their official website: “Takefusa Kubo will reinforce Castilla next season. 

“[He is] an attacking midfielder with excellent technique, very skilled, with vision of the game, great dribbling and eye for goal.

“Despite having only just turned 18, Kubo is already an international with the Japanese national team.”

Prior to staking a claim for minutes at the Santiago Bernabeu, Kuko will get an opportunity to catch the eye at the 2019 Copa America.

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