The Austrian writer Stefan Zweig tells of Auguste Rodin’s invitation to him in his studio to review his latest work. Rodin is a French sculptor and plastic artist who is considered one of the pioneers of sculpture during the nineteenth century. During the show, Rodin discovered a detail in the statue that bothered him, and with his eagerness to treat it, he was completely involved in correcting the degree to which his guest forgot and made him deeply absorbed in trying to remedy the defect. This absolute, almost hypnotic focus on the work is the best queen in any field, especially if it is a work of art. .
Well, Pedri gives a similar feeling that he plays very deeply, absorbed in the game, completely isolated, everything that happens around him does not affect him, immune to the pressure that the newcomer feels, does not fully understand what it means to play alongside Messi, that prestige that shook several stars Before him, he is indifferent to the close look of the fans and the media, and despite his shy introverted personality, he forgets this on the field and turns into a scoundrel with a tough face and serious features, perhaps because football for him is not a joke at all.
If we take Cruyff as a reference, we can easily describe Pedri as an exceptional talent. The Dutch defines talent very briefly as “making the right decision at the right time with the most accurate execution”. Well, Pedri is talented.Not only that, he is the player who makes others better and, in turn, makes the team as a whole better. Pedri ball is the two-touch ball, the ball of time and space, the ball of intuition and the feeling, not the center ball and the tactical template and tactical structure. Bedri is superior to all of that because of his mastery of everything, he knows everything in advance, he does not need instructions or cries from outside the line, just give him the shirt and clear a way for him to the playground, be practical with him, because it is practical to the point that he wears shoes without a strap and does not lift the sock To the knee.
He can create chaos in the opponent’s area with an electric dribble or a wonderful pass, and in the next scene he can move us from our seats after hitting the post painfully to save a goal, and between the two areas there is a football field that Pedri rules from start to finish with the curiosity of the explorer, the confidence of the child and the power of the great player. To do it all naturally and automatically, you have to be a soccer player from head to toe.
The Dynamo Kiev and Barcelona match in Ukraine was the one that might bring back the story of Mozart and Salieri, the historical story brought forward by the movie “Amadeus”. In this match Coutinho and Pedri played from the start in their positions, and perhaps the worst of Coutinho’s season was that match, because with Pedri on the field, the contradiction could easily be seen: one of them was very good at the utmost spontaneity and flow, and the other struggled to match the pace and serve the context without prejudice to it. Just as we saw in “Amadeus”, Mozart was gifted spontaneously and effortlessly, while Salieri’s only concern was to try to explain this despite being one of the great musicians of his time. When, how and where did Mozart learn it? Those were Salieri’s questions, and they also apply to Pedri, he is simply too young to learn all of that, and he plays absolutely authentic. (2)
Pedri was born in November 2002 – a few weeks after Iniesta made his debut with Barcelona – in Tegueste, a small town in the northwest of Tenerife, the largest of the Canary Islands. Including parents of other kids from rival teams, to the point where some would just come to see Pedri, as Robin Delgado recounts, his coach at the time. (3)
“The most noticeable thing about Pedri was not his quirks or the way to end him, as is common in those of his age, but what was striking was his maturity, his understanding of the game and his ability to make the right decision in every situation very quickly without thinking, you do not see that much of a child At the age of nine or 10. In one of the matches he scored a super-goal after he dodged all the opponent’s players in a complicated way that made everyone on the field salute him, after the match I asked him, “Bidri, how did you do that?” He told me: I don’t know, it came naturally. Him: I don’t know, no, that is not normal. “
Robin Delgado (4)
After several years in Tigheste, the Pedri family wanted to put him in a bigger challenge, and here they took him to a bigger club, Laguna. Pedri played in the Laguna youth team (under 18 years old) when he was 14 years old, and after his first match with the team, he requested the first team coach and escalated him to participate with him, and despite his father’s concern that his thin feet would be broken in those difficult confrontations, he quickly proved his ability He did well. With the continuation of his participation with Laguna, offers began to arrive from the clubs of the Segunda (Spanish second division), and Las Palmas was the most obsessed with Pedri, and although the idea of moving to another island was not reassuring for the Pedri family, Manuel Rodriguez, director of the Las Palmas Academy, convinced them after he presented They have all guarantees regarding his studies, his home, where he will play and how the club will help him advance in his career.
It may sound boring, but it did happen. Pedri did not stay more than one season at youth in Las Palmas before his promotion to the first team by Tony Otero, former technical director of the first team of Plus Palmas, who said of him: “He was 15 years old when I saw him for the first time, We did not believe what we saw, with what logic this would be the level of a fifteen-year-old player. We were afraid because he was very young, but as soon as we saw his response with the first team, we realized that he was exceptional. “
At the same time, offers began to pour in on Pedri from the Spanish League and even from outside Spain. Fortunately for Barcelona, Otero had worked as a talent scout for them for two years, and he had a personal relationship with the director of the academy there, Mr. Jose Maria Bakero. “Mr. Bakiro, I have a 1000% Barca model player in front of me. I advise you to come and sign with him, because signing with him now will be much easier than signing with him after a year.” That was the content of the call that brought Jose Bakiro to Las Palmas, and 10 minutes after watching Pedri Bakirou agreed with everyone in Las Palmas that Pedri had become a player for Barça before the contract was officially signed with a value of 5 million euros in September 2019, that is, before Pedri played his fourth official match with Las Palmas, and under the new contract, Pedri completed his season with Las Palmas as a matter of course. On loan, to join the Blaugrana after the end of the season. (5)
When Ronald Koeman arrived at Barcelona’s technical department, he initially stated that Pedri was too young to be considered a player in the first team, so he would be loaned, and in the language of logic, Koeman was very logical, which child would bear the pressures of such a difficult season and be able to compete with those in his position? ! And what is the likelihood that a 17-year-old newcomer will succeed in Barcelona ?! What is the probability that a player, Omar Pedri, will succeed in the first place in Parsa, regardless of all the data of the period and the club’s administrative, structural and sports crises?
Coman was practical and did not want to waste his time in that kind of problem, because of course he had what was more complicated, but fortunately Lapidre was allowed to attend the preparatory period with the team, and here Otero expected Coman to suffer the same as the Las Palmas officials when they saw him for the first time, And this almost happened, not only did Pedri stay in the club, but he became one of the main pillars in Barca since the beginning of the season, which astonished Delgado, who was sure that Pedri would prove himself in Barca, but not so quickly, but despite his surprise, it is of course. The case was the happiest
Pedri played 45 games with Koeman out of 46 games in all competitions, with a total of 3,085 minutes, meaning that he is the most young player with minutes played in the five major leagues, which expresses his utmost importance to the current Barcelona team. Although he did not lead any resonant statistical list, and contributed directly to only 9 goals throughout the season between recording and making, Pedri – almost – tops the lists of everything below that, which was explained by the “The Analyst” platform in a report published on the first of This April.
According to the report, Pedri tops the list of La Liga midfielders participating in any possession bout that ends with a shot, with an average of 6.2 posts per match. To find out how important the player’s participation in this process is, calculate the rate of expected goals for all shots produced by the acquisition periods, and here Pedri came third with his contribution at a rate of 0.8 expected goal after Federico Valverde and Frenkie de Jong, which expresses his role in facilitating Barcelona’s attacks and his ability to act as a channel To play, rather than directly participating in terminations. (6)
The beauty of Pedri’s performance lies in his active participation in different stages of play, during the building of the game he appears as a direct recipient of the ball, possessing enough intelligence to play under pressure and maintain the continuity of offensive activation, as Pedri comes second among the players in the middle of the League to participate in the processes of building play at a rate of 3.8 Participation in a single match, only surpassed by his veteran teammate Sergio Busquets, who plays in late positions on the pitch, of course.
Valdano continues his description of Pedri as “everyone’s partner” to such an extent that when he steps into the opponent’s penalty area, he forgets that there is a goal and continues to distribute the passes, which is not expressed by his goal-making numbers (3), but expressed by the statistics of creating opportunities, as Pedri is second most. The Spanish League players create chances (12) after Luka Modric, meaning that he made 4 times more chances than his companions scored, in addition to his broad contributions in the pass preceding the pre-assists, where he comes second after Lionel Messi with a rate of 26 assists as more. Contributors to this type of pass in the competition for this season, what actually proves that he is everyone’s partner, as Valdano described him, as his contributions in all stages of play vary along the length and width of the playing field.
Despite his apparently fragile physical structure, Pedri is distinguished in defensive operations as well. StatsBomb statistics showed that the young Spaniard tops all pressure figures for Barca this season, with 22 pressure attempts per match, in addition to 7 counter-pressure attempts, and finally 4 ball recoveries from attempts. This pressure, all this in addition to its uniqueness in the Aggressive Actions statistic, which is a statistic that shows the attempts to interfere, pressure, and violations committed against the opponent two seconds after receiving the ball, and Pedri is the most Blaugrana player to implement these measures 24 times per match, which reflects his importance The great defensive operation of Koman. Do not believe his image, it is true that he is a young artist from the Canary Islands with beach soccer, but he has a German engine inside, which makes him unique in one way or another. (7)
“I always try to escape from the reality of my current situation and their peers. I try to be myself and to live the same way I used to in Las Palmas, I do not like to go out much, I like to stay at home with the family. I owe my family everything, because of the values that they instilled in me. And because of their good advice that I still touch until now, and the presence of my brother helps me to remain calm and to be humble, I have always been like this, so why did I change at Camp Nou ?! ”
Pedri Gonzalez (8)
Delgado says that Pedri always had something different other than his unique performance, which is the way in which everyone respected, colleagues, opponents, referees and coaches, Delgado explains that by the influence of the surrounding environment and the circumstances of his upbringing, as Tighisti is a small village based on closeness and friendliness, in which everyone knows His neighbors, in addition to the family club, which – of course – had a role in instilling those values in Pedri, as his grandfather was the president of the Tigisti club, while his father played a goalkeeper for the team for years, so Pedri was always under control, which is confirmed by Tony Otero as well, noting Until Pedri has good people around him, including his agents who are keen to keep him away from all the ugly aspects of modern football, and even with the increasing interest in him from a large segment of European teams, the player and his father insisted that Barcelona is the destination in short and without opening the auction to exploit the situation . (9)
Some believe that these are signs of progress, and the question is: What progress? And in what direction? If this is progress, then it is definitely heading in a horrific direction, but this trend is the automatic development of economic data and inflation that the game is witnessing, but the talk here is about the absence of value and not about inflation, as money did not spoil the game itself, but it brought out ambitions, facilitated desires, and showed the insides. And it made what we currently live in a distorted and meaningless. Fortunately, then, a model like Pedri fell into the arms of angels and was not caught by the demons. Far from his promising sporting career, Pedri gives us lessons about value. The Pedri family gives us the ideal educational model, and Pedri agents represent the ideal management model. Even the formative process with its calmness was the optimal process. Perhaps Pedri’s case and his typical beginnings are a reflection of Barcelona as a whole, the club that is reborn from the womb of difficult suffering, and is witnessing a new beginning after the removal of the cancerous polyps that almost destroyed the old club.