10 Real youngsters who shone elsewhere


Real Madrid's La Fabrica academy has produced many great players who never got to show their ability at the Santiago Bernabeu. Here are 10 stars, including Saul Niguez and Juan Mata, Los Blancos perhaps let go of too early!

Every year, thousands of youngsters come close to breaking into their club's first team, but only a few make it. Sometimes, though, players who do not get selected for the top clubs' senior sides end up shining elsewhere in the future.

Scroll through the gallery above to see 10 players Los Blancos perhaps let go of too early

Barcelona's La Masia academy is renowned for being one of the best in the game, but their LaLiga rivals Real Madrid also have a long list of academy graduates who have contributed to the club's success.

There are some players, though, who left Los Blancos' academy in their teens for various reasons, and have actually become household names since.  

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Atletico Madrid star Saul Niguez is one of those players. He joined Real's youth academy when he was just 11 years old, leaving him far away from his family, who lived across the country in Elche on the east coast.

He endured a tough time at Real, though, telling El Mundo in 2018 that the bullying he suffered there eventually saw him decide to leave the club to join Los Rojiblancos, where he has shone since. 

According to Bleacher Report, 2010 FIFA World Cup winner Juan Mata progressed through Real's youth academy and eventually made the club's reserve team, known as Real Madrid Castilla.

After some impressive performances for the side, he was purchased by Valencia in 2007, and went on to have a fruitful career at Los Che, Chelsea and Manchester United, as well as with the Spain national team.

Other players you may not realise were a product of Los Blancos' academy include three defenders who have represented Atletico and a Paris Saint-Germain forward – scroll through the gallery above to see more players who came through Real's La Fabrica academy!

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