Uruguay legend Diego Lugano has claimed that he is not surprised by the rise of Federico Valverde as he expected this explosion from the former Penarol youngster.

Ever since Zinedine Zidane incorporated the Uruguayan into his starting XI, the Galacticos have been a different team. They are yet to be beaten with Valverde in the starting lineup and have conceded only twice in the games that he has started.

In his last match for Real Madrid before the international break, he scored his first-ever goal for the club with a slick finish against Eibar.

He has well and truly announced himself at the top level and the legendary centre-back Lugano was full of praise for the midfielder and for Los Blancos as well, stating that they knew how to introduce him to the first team.

"I expected this explosion of Fede Valverde," he told ​MARCA

"We knew he was a player with a lot of talent since he was a little boy. He has a very specific style of play, he's a fine player, and it was only a matter of time before he exploded at a big European team.

"Madrid knew how to use him well and they gave him the time he needed to gain confidence," he explained. He knew how to wait, and both the club and coach [Zinedine Zidane] deserve credit. "They knew how to introduce him to the team little by little," he concluded.