De Pelé hasta Camavinga y Ansu Fati: internacionales precoces

Juventud y ser internacional en el fútbol son dos palabras que normalmente no se juntan. Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo y Neymar son los mejores ejemplos de ellos, porque aunque sus talentos estaban sobre la media desde su adolescencia, tuvieron que esperar hasta cumplir la mayoría de edad para enfundarse la camiseta de sus países. Eduardo Camavinga y Ansu Fati no. Son internacionales precoces.

Camavinga y Fati se unieron a un selecto grupo de futbolistas que estuvieron en partidos de selecciones antes de cumplir los 18 años de edad. Una lista que cuenta con leyendas de la disciplina y que en la actualidad están ubicadas en el olimpo del deporte.

Pelé: el pionero de los precoces internacionales

Considerado el mejor futbolista de todos los tiempos por muchos, Pelé empezó bien temprano en su vida a aportar para la canarinha. El legendario delantero celebró su primera llamada con la selección brasileña antes de cumplir 17 años, el 7 de julio de 1957 en una derrota con Argentina (2-1).

Tampoco tuvo que esperar mucho para colocarle cifras a sus registros. En aquel mismo partido, sin demostrar nervios por enfrentarse a adultos siendo un adolescente, anotó su primer gol. El ariete mostró que sus condiciones eran especiales y se ganó la confianza del cuerpo técnico para una responsabilidad mayor.

Pelé brillaría en el Mundial-1958 con seis goles en cuatro partidos. Logró el récord del artillero más joven en la historia de los Mundiales, con menos de 18 años, una marca que aún conserva.

Maradona se ganó el corazón de Argentina rápido

Con tan solo 16 años de edad, Diego Maradona recibió el primer llamado para estar con la selección argentina. El 27 de febrero de 1977 participó en el encuentro contra Hungría, aunque “El Pelusa” solo estuvo en la cancha por media hora.

Fue el primer momento en la afición gaucha disfrutó de la calidad de un jugador que los llevaría a la gloria. A pesar de eso, el delantero tuvo que esperar dos años para volver a jugar un partido oficial con Argentina: su primer gol internacional lo anotó en 1979 en la Copa América.

Ronaldo: un delantero que recobró la esperanza de Brasil

Por Brasil habían pasado muchos delanteros de calidad, pero ninguno tenía un impacto similar al de Pelé. Pero todo cambió cuando llegó Ronaldo, un ariete dominante, potente y que ni siquiera podía consumir alcohol legalmente cuando se estrenó con la selección.

Ronaldo anotó su primer gol en su primer partido como titular con la Seleçao, el 4 de mayo de 1994, en un amistoso contra Islandia, a sus 17 años. Era su segundo partido con Brasil, porque dos meses antes entró en juego contra Argentina. En ese mismo 1994 fue campeón mundial en Estados Unidos.

Eduardo Camavinga y Ansu Fati: parte de un grupo prematuro

Estos últimos años se han multiplicado los casos de jugadores que son internacionales absolutos sin contar con la mayoría de edad. Por ejemplo, Gareth Bale fue uno de ellos. Gales contó con su desborde por la banda izquierda en 2006, antes de cumplir 17 años.

Más recientemente, Martin Odegaard (15 años y medio) estuvo con Noruega compitiendo cuando ni siquiera estaba en los planes del Real Madrid. Caso similar de Alphonso Davies (16 años y medio), quien debutó con Canadá tras una historia de sacrificios y esfuerzos para sobrevivir junto a su familia.

Ansu Fati junto a Camavinga, debutaron con sus selecciones
Ansu Fati se estrenó con España (Photo by GABRIEL BOUYS / AFP)

En este parón internacional, otras dos grandes promesas del fútbol mundial se han unido a la lista. El pasado 3 de septiembre Ansu Fati debutó con España ante Alemania a los 17 años y 308 días. Tres días más tarde se convirtió en el goleador más joven de la Roja, en una exhibición contra Ucrania.

Mientras que Eduardo Camavinga se convirtió en el primer jugador que se estrena con Francia siendo menor de edad en más de 100 años. El centrocampista, 10 días más joven que Fati, vio minutos en el partido ante Croacia en la Liga de las Naciones.

Solo dos jugadores fueron más precoces que Camavinga a nivel internacional. Julien Verbrugghe, internacional a los 16 años y 10 meses en 1906, y Maurice Gasgiger, que debutó con 17 años y 4 meses en 1914.

Lo que era una particularidad, empieza a ser más común. La cantidad de futbolistas que se colocan la camiseta de sus países sin ser mayores de edad aumenta considerablemente, pero todavía resta por conocer su harán la misma historia de sus antecesores.

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