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Spain's 16-year-old Yamal becomes country's youngest player and scorer

TBILISI, Georgia – Barcelona winger Lamine Yamal became Spain’s youngest international and goalscorer aged 16 years and 57 days as he made his debut away to Georgia in their Euro 2024 qualifier on Friday.

Yamal came off the bench in the 44th minute to replace injured forward Marco Asensio, to break the previous record of Barca team mate Gavi, who was 17 years and 62 days when he made his debut in 2021. Gavi had broken Angel Zubieta’s record (17 years 284 days), which had stood for nearly 85 years.

Yamal later scored Spain’s seventh goal with a tidy finish from inside the box to put the 2023 UEFA Nations League champions 7-1 ahead.

Yamal, who in August became Barcelona’s youngest debutant in an official match, received his first senior call-up for Spain when manager Luis de la Fuente named his squad for this week’s Euro 2024 Group A matches against Georgia and Cyprus.

He has become an important part of Barca’s forward line in the early stages of the season and was named man of the match in last month’s 4-3 come-from-behind win at Villarreal in LaLiga.

Yamal, who has a Moroccan father, was born and raised in Spain. He is a Spain youth international and his call-up for the senior side ended the hopes of Moroccan fans that he could be persuaded to switch allegiance. REUTERS

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