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Unai Emery speaks out on Real Madrid’s Kubo whining

The Villarreal manager talks about the young talent’s development

Villarreal v Cartagena - Pre-Season Friendly Photo by Jose Breton/Pics Action/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Unai Emery has responded to the situation with Take Kubo and playing time in an interview with AS:

Kubo is a great kid, he’s a boy who wants to grow up and who really wants to. He is aware that he has a challenge, that of being the first Japanese player to reach the top level, and there are a lot of people who want it to be and who want to speed up the process. But this acceleration is not good, he must adapt and he must grow. There is strong competition for his position. It must develop further, so we are in this perspective.

What I like about Emery’s comments are that they focus on the long-term welfare of Kubo’s career. Frankly, most of his advocates for playing time just haven’t watched Villarreal, and that’s at the root at the problem. They know Kubo is owned by Real Madrid, they know he was flashy at Mallorca last season, and they don’t get why he can’t come to Villarreal and do what he did at Mallorca.

For way too many Real Madrid fans, anything outside of Atleti and Barcelona is seen as just one single level of team. If you’re good enough for one of them, you’re good enough for any of them, and so they think Kubo should play. That’s not how football works.

I think Emery is taking the right approach here. If Real Madrid will just leave things alone, Kubo will improve far more this year than he did last year just getting to do whatever he wanted and not having to earn his minutes because he’s on a bad team.