Ilaix Moriba enjoyed more first-team minutes on Saturday as a second-half substitute in the 2-0 win over Sevilla in La Liga.
Manager Ronald Koeman opted to bring on the 18-year-old after Pedri was forced off with injury. It was something of a surprise move given the youngster’s inexperience but proved a good move with Ilaix enjoying a strong cameo.
Indeed the youngster teed up Messi for Barcelona’s second of the afternoon that sealed the win at the Ramon Sanchez-Pizjuan Stadium.
Ilaix was spotted after the final whistle offering his thanks to Koeman for another first-team chance.
En @MontonJordi ha seguit Ilaix Moriba al final del partit, amb la càmera de TV3. La reverència a Koeman il.lustra l’alegria del moment, l’agraïment per la confiança en els joves i les ganes de triomfar al Barça. #fcbarcelona pic.twitter.com/QW3Bm7uOyn— Francesc Latorre (@FrancescLatorre) February 27, 2021
The youngster also seemed to have impressed Koeman who praised the midfielder after the match.
“He was very good. He was strong and very calm on the ball after coming on. He contributed in the little time he had. He helped us to win.”
Source | Marca
Ilaix will be hoping for more minutes next time out and looks to be in contention for Wednesday’s game against Sevilla with Pedri expected to miss out because of a leg injury.