There is a debate going on about Diego Lainez and his massive deal to Real Betis. The Spanish side won the war against Ajax (as well as some French sides) and there is a thought that Ajax was a by far a smarter move for the 18-year-old Mexican midfielder. Yet, after breaking some things down, Diego Lainez’s move to Real Betis has many upsides for his overall evolution.
Here are three reasons as to why Real Betis will be a smart move and a welcoming home for Lainez…
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1: Quique Setién
The manager of Real Betis, Quique Setién, is a bit of a hot commodity in Spanish football. He is known as a maverick manager, with an invigorating style of play which has shown to have some serious dividends. This is a factor as to why Lainez to Real Betis will be a great pairing.
Real Betis under Quique Setién has been transformed into a serious threat in La Liga, as well as the Europa League. As of now, Setién has helped Real Betis to 7th in league play, and they finished on top of their group in Europa League, beating out the likes of Olympiacos and AC Milan.
Quique Setién likes a strong attacking style, utilizing space and quick pushes upfield with the wingers. This style will help mold Diego Lainez who can play on either wing or even as an attacking midfielder. Also, if Setién goes with a 3-4-3, which he has done in the past, he will have four spots on the pitch where Lainez could plug into.
2: Andrés Guardado
One of the best ways to get integrated with a club is to have a mentor already there for you. In this case, Mexico captain and midfielder Andrés Guardado will have the responsibility of showing Diego Lainez the ropes at Real Betis.
The 32-year-old has made his name well known and beloved at Real Betis, so his guidance and word on Diego Lainez will go a very long way. Moreover, this connection will help when the Mexico national team duty comes into play, as being able to transfer that rhythm will be a blessing for ‘Tata’ Martino and co.
3: Already surpassing expectations under pressure
The fans who are saying Ajax would have been a better fit for Diego generally point out that Eredivisie is a good stepping stone league for a player of his level of talent, and I do not entirely disagree. However, Diego Lainez was thrown to the lions, so to speak, when he was 16 years old in Liga MX play. From there, he battled for a starting spot at one of the biggest clubs in the nation and left as a champion.
The idea that there would be less pressure and stress on Diego would be better is one that I don’t think will matter once he is ready for action in La Liga. He has come a long way to where he is, and a challenge like that of playing at a top Spanish side will only help mold him into a more complete player.
Ajax would have been a good destination or even a French side, yet, the signing by Real Betis will be one that both parties will enjoy. Diego Lainez will get to show his skill on a bigger stage, while Real Betis will have an up-and-coming talent on their hands until 2024.