Goals, assists, personality… Alex Ginard hasn’t taken long to show his worth for Barça’s U-16s A team. The ex Marcet player is now a leader on the pitch.
Alex Ginard will never forget the 17th of September 2016. The clouds that hid the sky at Sant Joan Despí weren’t able to hide the number 10 on the back of his blaugrana shirt. The midfielder from Mallorca, was officially training with his new club and at the Ciudad Deportiva Joan Gamper his dreams came true. Barça 5 – Gimnàstic 0.
Four months previous to the occasion he trained with his future teammates. He was having trials. Barça wanted to see his talent from up close. His journey to Barça had started two years ago on a flight from Mallorca to Barcelona. The destination, an intensive course at Marcet.
Football on the Balearic Islands wasn’t enough for him, and his family decided to explore a new path in the ‘Capital of Football’. “He showed his quality from the first day”, remembered coach Arnau Basagaña. “He stood out with his energy, ability to change his rhythm and shooting. He was also excellent on the ball and had a lot of potential. All of this made Alex a perfect candidate for our Professional Program”.
This is how his adventure in Barcelona started. Both his family and trainers knew that Alex had to some fine tuning to become even better. They had to hone his talent. This is where the High Performance Academy came into play.
“He was here for two years”, Basagaña explains. Basagaña trained him during his time at the Tecnofútbol U-16s, Fundacion Marcet’s competition squad. “During his time here he progressed spectacularly, especially his behavioural side of the game. In the beginning his attitude wasn’t great. He’d get angry when he missed and when things didn’t go his way. He’d sometimes slam his teammates mistakes. Something that’s not acceptable at top level clubs. We worked a lot on cutting this out of his game and in time we saw the results. The improvement in his attitude benefitted his performance on the pitch and turned Alex into a more complete player. As shown on his highlights reel that was used to put him in the shop window and facilitate his move to a top level club.
Goals, assists, personality on the pitch… Alex hasn’t taken long to show his worth to Barça’s U-16s.He was the main character during their summer tours of Italy and the Middle East. He’s also adapted extremely well to his new surroundings at Barcelona, he’s even been included in the clubs “ideal 11” and been mentioned by the newspaper ‘Sport’ as a one of the players highlighted to improve the level of the Blaugrana’s youth academy. Playing in the División de Honor doesn’t faze him. The 10 on his back doesn’t weigh him down. Even taking the reigns of the team in complicated situations, doesn’t faze him.
The two years he spent at Marcet, were the perfect set-up for his signing at a big club. The daily double training sessions and help from New Technologies were the keys to paving his way there. “Thanks to personalised video-analysis it was possible to correct errors that were being made during matches. Especially with his decision making and his footballing intelligence”, explains analyst Benito Montalvo. “With Alex we also did a lot of specific work on his free-kicks. Like improving his posture whilst shooting, thanks to tools like the smart ball. He tended to get his body positioning wrong and, with work and time we fixed it”. It worked so well that he’s now in charge of taking free-kicks for Barça.
When he came out for the last match of the 15/16 season with Tecnofútbol, the Mallorcan midfielder already knew that it was a question of weeks before he joined up with the blaugrana ranks. He received the news at the beginning of June, shortly after his trial with Barça. “We knew he deserved the opportunity”, Basagaña says. “A lot scouts carefully watch what we do, but for some strange reason nobody had ever noticed him. So we decided to get in touch directly with our contacts at Barça and convinced them to take him on for a trial. He had two training sessions and played one match”. The rest is history.