Real Madrid snuck in to seal the signing of highly rated Japanese forward
18-year-old Kubo, who is set to spend next season in Real Madrid's B team under the tutelage of club legend Raul Gonzalez, returns to Spain after four years, when a Barcelona transfer ban for the illegal signing of youth players ultimately led him to leave La Masia to return to Japan.
Nicknamed (somewhat predictably) the 'Japanese Messi' big things are expected of Kubo, who made his senior Japan debut in 2019. Barcelona had been tipped as favourites to re-sign the wonderkid but, according to Marca, they were tripped up by his contract termination date.
The report claims that Real Madrid were aware his contract ended this summer, while (possibly confused by an error on the website Transfermarkt) Barcelona and PSG were under the impression that the deal ended on 31 January 2020.
Los Blancos made Kubo an attractive offer, a five-year contract worth
Unbelievable. Real Madrid have signed Takefusa Kubo, the biggest talent in Asia, for free, because unlike Barcelona and PSG, they knew his contract ended on June 1.— Zach Lowy (@ZachLowy) June 14, 2019
Barcelona and PSG thought Kubo’s contract ended on January 31, 2020, simply because Transfermarkt said so. pic.twitter.com/tB0c6lS8vN
"I'm calm. It's a normal day, but I'm very happy."
On Real's website, Los Blancos described their new player as 'technically gifted and hugely talented'.