Nigeria-eligible teenager becomes youngest player to play for Barcelona

Vicky Lopez made history on Saturday when she started for Barcelona against Tenerife in the Spanish Primera Iberdrola opener at Estadi Johan Cruyff.

At 16 years, One month and 19 days, Lopez became the youngest to play in the professional era for the Catalans in a competitive tie after featuring in their 2-0 win over Tenerife.

On her 16th birthday, Lopez completed her move from rivals Madrid CFF, after signing a five-year deal with the Spanish champions in July as she will continue to develop, reside and study at La Masia.

After featuring in the preseason games, head coach Jonatan Giráldez introduced her as a first team starter, before being replaced by Nigeria international Asisat Oshoala in the 62nd minute against Tenerife.

It is the first competitive debut for Barcelona by the 16-year-old, who has been for years at Madrid CFF, where she became the youngest player ever to debut in Primera Iberdrola at just 15 years and 2 months last season.

Considered one of the greatest teenage promises in the women’s game in Spain, López oozes skill and charisma and can play as an attacking midfielder or winger.

Born in Madrid to a Spanish father and a Nigerian mother, the young sensation is eligible to represent Nigeria at the senior level, was one of the standout players at the recent U17 European Championship, where Spain finished runners-up.

Meanwhile, second half strike from Geyse Ferreira and Caroline Hansen ensured Lopez enjoyed a winning new start to her life with Barcelona as the Catalans seek to defend the title crown this term.