Raphael Varane may be a well known name now, but not so long ago Real Madrid took a gamble on the then unknown 18-year-old taking him from French outfit Lens.
On June 27 of 2011 Madrid confirmed the signing of the young defender on the advice of their former galactico Zinedine Zidane, who had scouted the young talent.
Zidane supposedly convinced Jose Mourinho to pick up the player before losing out on him to another top club.
There were plenty of teams reportdly interested in the star including Arsenal. Arsene Wenger recently admitted his regrets for not trying harder for the French international.
Varane has made a huge impact at the Bernabeu this season, and has shown his qualities to the world in recent displays against Barcelona. The defender showed his class in defence keeping Messi and co at bay, however also showed how lethal he is in attack, especially in set plays, as he scored in both matches with headers.
In the first match he made sure Madrid got an important draw to take to the Nou Camp. And in the return, he scored a fantastic header into the top corner finishing off the Catalan side and eliminating them from the competition.
Next up for the youngster is a trip to Old Trafford, where he will look to shut out the likes of Wayne Rooney and Robin van Persie. This will be another great test for the player and one he will surely thrive on.
DISCLAIMER: This article has been written by a member of the GiveMeFootball Writing Academy and does not represent the views of GiveMeFootball.com or SportsNewMedia. The views and opinions expressed are solely that of the author credited at the top of this article. GiveMeFootball.com and SportsNewMedia do not take any responsibility for the content of its contributors.