Monaco starlet Fabinho could have taken a very different career path, but rejected the bright lights of Real Madrid at an early age, electing to continue his development in the Principality.
Jose Mourinho handed the then 19-year-old a debut for the first team in 2013, just one month after Casemiro has graduated from Castilla.
But unlike his compatriot, the man earmarked as Dani Alves’ natural heir for Brazil surprisingly eschewed continued interest from los Blancos and headed to Ligue 1.
“It was my first season as a pro. At first it was hard because the championship is completely different,” the 23-year-old told Goal.
“I learned the language and it became better. It was a good experience - I could have stayed with Castilla [Real Madrid B team]. I do not know if it was too early or not but I wanted to leave for Monaco.”
The Brazil international now has four caps for his country and has emerged as one of Europe’s most promising full-backs, attracting interest from Manchester United, but is focused solely on Monaco’s challenge for the French league title.
“There was something with Manchester [United], I think there was an interest but nothing concrete,” he revealed.
“I am settled in Monaco, we have made a good start to the season and I am focused on them."