Lamine Yamal: Barcelona's record-breaking wonderkid and best La Masia product since Lionel Messi


It takes something special to be the youngest Barcelona player ever named in a matchday squad. The club's famed La Masia academy has yielded some true legends of the game, but none of them — not Lionel Messi, Xavi or Carles Puyol — cracked the first-team earlier than Lamine Yamal has.

Yamal won't turn 16 until July, but he's been around the Barca senior squad for a while now. Xavi called up the winger to train with his team last year, and he's clearly impressed enough to earn a crack at the big time, having been named on the bench for Sunday's meeting with Atletico Madrid.

Yamals' performances at youth level have already led to dreaded Messi comparisons, not least because Yamal is a talented inside forward with a wonderful left foot.

But he's proved himself a potential star in his own right, carving out a path different to that of La Masia's biggest legend.

So, who is Yamal, and why is he in Xavi's first-team plans at such a young age? NXGN takes a closer look at the Barcelona's latest jewell...