Could Takefusa Kubo be on his way back to Real Madrid next season?

Takefusa Kubo (Photo by Cristian Trujillo/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images)
Takefusa Kubo (Photo by Cristian Trujillo/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images) /

When Real Madrid signed Takefusa Kubo in the summer of 2019, it was a transfer that generated a ton of noise. This is because he was one of the world’s most highly sought-after prospects at that time, but it was mainly due to his roots as a La Masia graduate in his early career that caused a majority of the buzz.

While Madridistas have barely seen Kubo play for the club, other than a very brief involvement in Real Madrid’s 2019 summer preseason, the wait to see the Japanese youngster be a part of Real Madrid’s official squad could finally be over.

According to a recent report from AS, Kubo could well be in for a chance at Real Madrid next season as both the player and the club welcome the opportunity.

Since arriving at Real Madrid, Kubo has had spells out with Mallorca, Villarreal, and Getafe, and it has been an up and down situation for him.

We saw the best out of the Japanese winger during his first stint out on loan with Mallorca, where he was rather impressive in contributing four goals and four assists, respectively, for them.

The same indeed cannot be said about his time playing under Unai Emery’s Villarreal in the first half of the 20/21 season, where Real Madrid recalled him due to his lack of playtime. He later finished the 20/21 campaign with Getafe, where he was again rather disappointing and did not flourish whatsoever.

Currently, the 20-year-old is out on loan with Mallorca, where he has shown some glimpses of promise but hasn’t ideally been as fruitful as he once was during his first spell out on loan for Los Bermellones.

Real Madrid, Vinicius Jr., Takefusa Kubo (Photo by David S. Bustamante/Soccrates/Getty Images)
Real Madrid, Vinicius Jr., Takefusa Kubo (Photo by David S. Bustamante/Soccrates/Getty Images) /

Kubo’s return to Real Madrid is contingent upon one thing

While it may seem the case that Kubo could be a part of Real Madrid’s squad come next season, it certainly isn’t as easy as it may seem.

Currently, Real Madrid’s three non-EU positions are occupied by Éder Militão, Vinícius, and Rodrygo, and there wouldn’t be a place for Kubo unless one of those three players leaves the club next season.

That highly seems unlikely given their importance to the current squad, but there could be a contingency depending on Vinícius’ citizenship status.

As per that same report, Vinícius could be the key to allowing Kubo to occupy one of those non-EU spots in the team. This is because the Brazilian is eligible to receive Spanish citizenship as he has been a country resident for at least two years.

However, the complications of the pandemic have slowed things down for Vinícius’ Spanish citizenship, and Real Madrid is still waiting on the news from Spain’s Bureaucracy.

The report also indicates that the process for Militão and Rodrygo is pending. Still, they arrived at Real Madrid a year later than Vinícius, so the club understands that they have to retain the non-EU positions regardless.

Reinier Jesus is another player who would fall under that non-EU bracket and could retain the position next season as his current loan spell is going to reach its conclusion at the end of this campaign.

However, it is unlikely he will be at Real Madrid next season, given his disappointing loan spell with Borussia Dortmund. The club will most likely look for another loan destination for him to develop in.

It remains to be seen whether or not Kubo will be a part of Carlo Ancelotti’s plans next season, but he undoubtedly can benefit from being at Real Madrid next season despite Ancelotti’s stubborn rotation policy. 

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Even if he does not receive minutes, he can receive mentorship from the likes of Karim Benzema, Luka Modrić, and Toni Kroos, which can serve as crucial for his development as a player.

We’ll see what happens with the Japanese winger come next season, but he indeed is one for the future, and it’ll be interesting seeing how his Real Madrid career will unfold in the near future.