Asensio: I had the chance to join Barca


While he is the new golden boy of Real Madrid, young attacker Marco Asensio revealed he could have made the move to arch-rivals Barcelona.

Asensio has quickly broken into Madrid's starting XI after excelling and impressing coach Zinedine Zidane in pre-season.

It has been a rapid rise for the 20-year-old, who returned from a successful loan spell at Espanyol, after joining Madrid from Mallorca in 2014, but he could have ended up at Camp Nou.

"I like both, they're the best," he said in an interview with Cadena Ser after being asked which shirt he prefers, Spain or Madrid.

"I had chances to go to Barcelona and other teams, but I came to Madrid.

"I couldn't wear the Barcelona shirt now."

Asensio has started Madrid's two opening LaLiga fixtures, scoring once, while he was also on target in the UEFA Super Cup victory over Sevilla.

His form has seen team-mates James Rodriguez and Isco fall further down the pecking order in the Spanish capital.

But Asensio - on international duty with Spain - added: "I'm there to help and it's the coaches decision if he chooses me before others.

"My aspiration is to be a starter, but there are important players who have spent many years at the club.

"I feel comfortable in the playmaker role, but I can play on the left, on the right and even pivot.

"I want to win all the titles, be a reference for the team and for the fans and I want to live my story at Real Madrid."