Real Madrid defender Theo Hernandez has completed a season-long loan move to Real Sociedad.
Hernandez, 20, played 13 times in La Liga last season but could not displace regular first-choice left-back Marcelo and has opted to move on to find regular football.
The Atletico Madrid youth product moved across the capital for €24 million just 12 months ago, but found life difficult at the Bernabeu and rarely featured under last year’s coach Zinedine Zidane.
Juventus and Fulham had also both been linked with moves to take him on loan this summer, but having played a limited role during Madrid’s International Champions Cup campaign in the U.S. a move to La Real has been sealed.
“Real Madrid C. F. and Real Sociedad have agreed the loan of our player Theo Hernandez for the upcoming season until the 30th of June 2019,” read a statement.
A superb 2016-17 campaign on loan at Alaves, capped with a Copa del Rey final goal against Barcelona, persuaded the Bernabeu hierarchy to trigger his release clause last summer.
But the signing of right-back Alvaro Odriozola from La Real earlier this summer, as well as the emergence of youth teamer Sergio Reguilon, have increased new Madrid coach Julen Lopetegui’s options in defence.
Recent months have also seen Theo’s older brother Lucas — who usually plays at centre-back — move up to the France senior side and play on the left side of defence as Les Bleus won the World Cup.