Real Madrid have unveiled their new No.7 at the Bernabeu today and there’s a fair chance this is the first you’re hearing of him.
Signed from Lyon a couple of days ago, Mariano Diaz has been handed Cristiano Ronaldo’s old shirt. No pressure there, then.
Technically, the Spanish giants have actually re-signed Diaz, with the 25-year-old Dominican striker having come through their youth ranks and made a handful of first-team appearances before leaving for Lyon (for a fee of roughly £7million) last summer.
After just one season away, Diaz is back having scored 21 goals in 45 appearances for Lyon over the course of 2017/18 without really making much of a noise outside of Ligue 1 circles.
Indeed, he found himself relieved of a starting berth toward the end of the campaign, with coach Bruno Genesio preferring to opt for the likes of Bertrand Traore, Memphis Depay and Nabil Fekir up top.
That hasn’t stopped Los Blancos paying £30million to get their boy back, and saddling him with perhaps the weightiest shirt number in the entirety of football lore.
Here’s wishing Diaz the very best, though we can’t help thinking that Real haven’t exactly helped his cause by making him instantly comparable to one of, if not the club’s greatest ever player.