Lunin must decide –

Lunin debe decidir

Courtois’s dictatorship has been such that Madrid has spent several years without knowing for sure if they had a substitute goalkeeper. But the doubt, on the verge of perpetual, was resolved: yes, it has it… And carats. Lunin he waited for his opportunity working in silence and when he received it, he proved to have a draw. The last chapter was New Mirandilla, where it became the worst nightmare of a Cádiz protagonist of siege sections. Ancelotti announced at the press conference that, as in the derby, he would repeat the starting role. And his confidence was such that he directly left Courtois in Madrid, taking the Ukrainian, Fudias (regular starter for Castilla) and Diego Piñeiro (juvenile A).


Photo by Andriy Lunin

In his second league participation this season he left some brilliant numbers. Cádiz put him to the test seven times: one goal, four clear balls and two blocked. And the goal was everything except his fault, because the right hand of Nephew he played on Militao’s back, drawing a diabolical parabola that hit the crossbar and entered with suspense. Totally unstoppable. His face reflected impotencebecause precisely the task that remains pending is to leave a clean sheet: he has conceded in 100% of the games he has played with Madrid. This time he did his best again, but luck did not smile on him.

Yes in the penalty stopped Negredo, where he was right by launching himself to his left and putting in a very difficult hand to stop the missile from low. A save that froze Nuevo Mirandilla, Negredo and Sergio González himself, who was incredulous in the mixed zone: “It’s the first penalty they call us all season and if we don’t score it…”. He committed only one foul, precisely the maximum penalty that he later amended. With his feet he also proved to be a remarkable goalkeeper: he had a 74% success rate, a very high figure considering that long goal kicks are often not won and that penalizes them. He only got off the ball once, trying to get out playing every other time.

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Lunin saves Negredo’s penalty that would have made it 2-1.

His professionalism and performance are publicly applauded from the locker room. Nachowhen asked at the foot of the field, was resounding: “He had a great game, with decisive saves like the penalty. To have played so little, he has played a great game“. His partner also joined in the fight for ownership, Courtoiswho, being in Madrid resting, pulled his own social networks to send him a message: “Great match, Lunin!”. The Ukrainian is aware that Thiabut’s level today is incontestable, but he accepts his relief role with skill. He has never pouted, never said a bad word. And that behind closed doors is applauded.

1,416 days waiting

The June 22, 2018 Real Madrid made his signing official from Zorya, a transfer with a cost close to nine million euros. and until the May 8, 2022day of the derby in the Metropolitan, did not receive the opportunity to debut in league of white. 1,416 days and three transfers later. In 2018, after the departure of Kiko Casilla, he landed in Madrid with Courtois and the club decided to loan him to Leganes, where despite being a substitute for Cuéllar, he came to play five league games; one, in the Metropolitan (defeat by 1-0).

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The following season, 2019-20, he left on loan to Valladolid, an assignment hastily canceled due to the lack of minutes and opportunities. He did not get to play a minute in the League with Pucela, limiting himself to two Cup matches (Tolosa and Marbella). So Madrid forwarded it to Oviedowhere he became a regular, playing every game from matchday 23. Last season he returned to Madrid and since then, he has established himself as second keeper. In the derby he debuted in the League and in Cádiz, he repeated.

Lunin, during the game at Nuevo Mirandilla (1-1).

No clean sheets

Because as has been pointed out, that is still his pending task. In these four years he has only played three Cup -of which two were in Alcoy- and the two recent league. The first time saw how they were eliminated at the first change in extra time (2-1); the second, already this season, lived the vendetta (1-3); and in the next round, a tachycardic tie in Elche (1-2). In all of them it fit. And later, both in the Metropolitan (1-0) and in the Small cup (1-1), more of the same bitterness. He has played 510 minutes with Real Madrid and has conceded six goals (one every 85′). At the expense of removing that thorn, at least for now, he has already escaped ostracism. Lunin has played and has shown that it is worth it. Yes Courtois one day he gets constipated, there is a goalkeeper.

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A future dilemma

But after his recent appearances, a dilemma has been opened. His contract ends in 2024 and he must decide what he wants to do with his career. One option would be stay in Madrid, where except for a capital turn of events, he would be a substitute; he would spend his life on the bench, playing some Cup games and dribbles, others in the League. The alternative plan would be to leave the white team and continue his career somewhere where he can start. If you choose this path, the deadlines would be shortened, since the club should look for a transfer in 2023, a year before it is free. Lunin must decide.


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