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Vultures may be looming large, preparing to pounce in Bilbao, but in San Sebastien the Basque production line of Real Sociedad has a few stars rising too.
20-year-old Iñigo Martínez (soon to be 21) is one of them, and he is enjoying a fine debut season in La Liga. Born in Ondarroa, Basque Country, the young central defender came though the B team at La Real before Montanier placed his faith in him at the beginning of the 2011/12 campaign.
Not the tallest for a defender, he has demonstrated versatility this season by playing at left back and in midfield when required. Left footed he- as you would expect for a Spaniard- is comfortable on the ball and has, thus far, displayed a decent range of passing.
Martínez is a Spanish u21 international already, and has three La Liga goals to his name this season. One from inside his own half against rivals Athletic! But wait… there’s more. He repeated the same feat six weeks later, securing a dramatic 3-2 win against Real Betis.
As you’d expect the young defender is already being touted about. Arsenal and Chelsea are just two sides to have been linked with his signature. At futbolgrande, we’re predicting a bright future, albeit a bright future which involves more time blossoming at Anoeta.