Real Madrid have unveiled their new signing Alvaro Odriozola at the Santiago Bernabeu as they begin life after Cristiano Ronaldo.
The 22-year-old Spain international, signed from Real Sociedad for a reported fee of £35million, was paraded in front of a few hundred supporters at the stadium on Wednesday.
Odriozola was a part of Spain’s squad at the World Cup in Russia but did not feature in any of their four matches as they crashed out on penalties to the host nation in the last 16.
After being introduced to cheering crowds, Odriozola, who has signed a six-year contract with the European champions, showed off his ball control skills and kicked footballs into the crowd.
He passed a medical to complete the formalities of his move and becomes their third signing of the summer after young goalkeeper Andriy Lunin and Brazilian prospect Vinicius Junior.
A graduate of Real Sociedad’s academy, Odriozola broke into the first team in January 2017 and subsequently established himself as the club’s first-choice right-back, making 57 appearances in total.
Odriozola, who has four caps for Spain at senior level, will provide back-up for Dani Carvajal at Real Madrid and should be ahead of youngster Achraf Hakimi in the pecking order.
He has previously worked with new Real manager Julen Lopetegui, which should help him to settle in the life at the Bernabeu.
Odriozola described his quick progress through the ranks at Sociedad and then his move to Real as ‘like a film script.’
He said: ‘It is an honour to be here and to achieve the cream of every footballer – to sign for Real Madrid.
‘I know the responsibility that comes with wearing this shirt and how I must behave as a Real Madrid player on and off the pitch.
‘I have always said the last year-and-a-half have been like a film script. I made my debut with the reserves in the Segunda B and shortly afterwards I was a starter in the first team at Real Sociedad.
‘I was then picked for the World Cup and now I am realising my dream of wearing the shirt of Real Madrid. It’s a day I will never forget and I won’t let this opportunity pass me by.’
Though Real are building for the future, the headlines have been dominated by their decision to sell talisman Cristiano Ronaldo to Juventus in a deal worth £100m.