Connect with us

Scout Report

Scout Report: Carlos Soler | Valencia’s young midfield maestro

Dan Davis has a look at Carlos Soler, Valencia’s young midfielder making waves in La Liga.

Spain have always been a nation blessed with a seemingly endless supply of classy midfielders. The most recent golden trio in the middle of the park, Xavi, Iniesta and Sergio Busquets, have allowed their team mates to dominate games and reside as kings over the international stage. However, there is no denying that Iniesta and Busquets are entering their twilight oastears (with Xavi at the end of his career), and will need to be replaced eventually. Carlos Soler, Valencia’s exciting prospect, could be the answer to this.

Who is Carlos Soler?

Carlos Soler is a 20-year-old midfielder, born in Valencia, Spain. He first made his breakthrough in football by joining his hometown club’s youth set-up in 2005. Joining at the age of eight, he was played all across the pitch in an effort from his coaches to find his most natural position. Initially, Soler was fielded as a striker, but was quickly withdrawn into an attacking midfield role. After impressing in spells there, he was finally played as a central midfielder, where he was given time to prove his natural prowess.

After impressing regularly with his dominating performances in the middle of the park, Soler continued to progress through Valencia’s youth ranks, before finding himself in the senior reserve team. He made his debut for the reserves in May 2015, as he started in central midfield against Segunda Division B side, UE Cornella. Despite the 1-0 loss, Soler impressed both fans and coaches alike, proving himself adept at controlling the tempo of a game.

Although often being played in a more withdrawn role, Soler grabbed himself his first reserves goal in December 2015, as he scored his team’s second in a 2-2 draw with CF Badalona. The following year, in March, Soler renewed his contract and was rewarded with a substitute role in Valencia’s UEFA Europa League clash with Athletic Bilbao. Despite being an unused substitute, it was becoming clear that the creative midfielder would soon become part of his club’s senior plans.

Finally, on December 10th 2016, Soler was granted his first-team debut for Valencia, as he was substituted on during a 3-2 defeat away to Real Sociedad. A string of impressive performances saw the young midfielder help turn around his side’s poor run of form, and he even grabbed his first senior goal in January, hitting the back of the net against Villarreal.

Despite only scoring three goals in 22 appearances for Valencia’s senior team so far, Soler promises to be one to watch out in this season. If he proves himself capable and continues to demonstrate his talents, it is likely he will be featuring regularly in Spain’s midfield in the near future.

What is his Style of Play?

Carlos Soler is a very quick and direct player, who will often be found roaming in the midfield waiting to be picked out with a pass. His nature is to receive the ball and drive into the heart of the opposition, using his deft touches and good vision to push forward Valencia’s forays into attacking areas. His preferred role is as an attacking midfielder, as this allows him plenty of opportunities to bring the ball forward and fashion chances for his teammates. He also has an impressive amount of strength, and uses this to his advantage as he is able to hold off challenges and retain possession during attacks.

Soler is also tactically aware, which ensures he is always in dangerous positions. Despite Valencia regularly fielding Soler in an advanced position, he isn’t afraid to drop deep to look for possession. He is technically gifted, and when he receives the right pass in midfield, can spray the ball to the flanks or bring counter-attacks forward.

What are his Strengths?

He holds an impressive amount of pace, and can be seen using this time and time again to transition from defence to attack. Soler’s ability to play passes short or long, and also to drive forward through an opponent’s defence, means that he is incredibly unpredictable. Despite being 6ft and having a relatively slender build, Soler is deceptively strong, and uses this ability to hold up the ball and dictate the pace of his team’s attacks. His awareness of the game does allow him to change the tempo of the game at any moment, and this allows Soler to spark the majority of Valencia’s counter-attacks when he is on the field.

Despite Soler seeming to favour being played in an attacking midfield role, he does have a certain degree of tactical flexibility. This means that Valencia have fielded him in deeper-lying midfield positions, where he would be expected to maintain his team’s defensive structure, as well as contribute to Valencia’s forays forward. Soler is also capable of playing in a wider attacking role, where he impressed in his side’s 3-1 away victory at Granada earlier this year.

What are his Weaknesses?

Despite Carlos Soler’s seemingly limitless potential, it is important to remember he is only 20 years of age and is susceptible to mistakes. His scintillating forward movements are a stark contrast to his clumsiness at defending, and the potential for him to make rash challenges and concede unwanted set-pieces. When it comes to defending corners and free-kicks, Soler must ensure he is commanding and decisive in the future, to prevent placing his team in any danger because of hesitation or a lapse in concentration.

As is the case with many young players wanting to make an impression, Carlos Soler is partial to picking out the wrong type of ball, or not releasing a pass at all. To make any counter-attack successful, the passing must be concise and pinpoint, and Soler has the capacity to not thread passes through at the right time, meaning that some moves have broken down. If he works on his decision-making, then he will be more than capable of providing Valencia’s strikers with the service they need to fire their team to a higher league finish this time round.

Dan Davis

Dan Davis

Dan is a life-long Manchester United supporter, and studies Multimedia Journalism at Bournemouth University. He is a freelance football journalist, and can be followed on twitter @dan_davis20
Dan Davis

100 to Watch


Opinions3 days ago

Julen Lopetegui at Real Madrid: Tactical Approach & Key Players

Aamer Aslam writes about what we can expect from European Champions Real Madrid after the arrival of Julen Lopetegui On...

Opinions5 days ago

Carlo Ancelotti at Napoli: Tactical Approach & Key Players

Charles Onwuakpa writes about Carlo Ancelotti and the approach he is likely to take on at Napoli. After three intense...

Scout Report5 days ago

Scout Report: Gonçalo Paciência | Eintracht’s exquisite forward

Jose Miguel Saraiva writes a detailed scout report about Eintracht Frankfurt’s striker, Gonçalo Paciência. For those who have been attentively observing...

Talent Radar6 days ago

Talent Radar: Liga MX’s 10 Young Players to Watch in 2018-19

Thomas Harrison writes about the 10 players to watch out for in the Liga MX for this coming season. Mexico...

Talent Radar7 days ago

20 Key Young Players to Watch from 20 La Liga Teams

Tom Canton takes a look at they key young players to watch from each of the 20 La Liga teams....

Scout Report7 days ago

Scout Report: Alphonso Davies | Speedy Canadian winger

Griffin O’Neill writes a detailed scout report about Alphonso Davies, the Vancouver Whitecaps winger. While many still believe that the...

Scout Report7 days ago

Scout Report: Diogo Gonçalves | Benfica’s tricky winger

Jose Miguel Saraiva writes a detailed scout report about Benfica’s tricky winger, Diogo Goncalves Having been deprived of their biggest...

Talent Radar1 week ago

Talent Radar: 5 breakthrough players to watch in the Bundesliga

Griffin O’Neill writes about 5 young players breaking through in the Bundesliga this season. Josh Sargent // 18 // Werder...

Talent Radar2 weeks ago

20 Key Young Players to Watch from 20 Premier League Teams

Andrew Thompson takes a look at the key young players to watch from each of the 20 Premier League teams...

Talent Radar2 weeks ago

Talent Radar: Argentina Superliga’s 10 Young Players to Watch in 2018-19

Tom Robinson briefs us about the 10 best young players to watch in the Argentine Superliga Argentina may have endured...

Talent Radar2 weeks ago

Talent Radar: 5 breakthrough players to watch in the Premier League

Hrishi Anand writes about 5 young players breaking through in the Premier League this season. As is the case every...

Opinions2 weeks ago

Unai Emery at Arsenal: Tactical Approach & Key Players

Hrishi Anand writes about what Arsenal fans and the Premier League can look forward to with the arrival of Unai...

Scout Report2 weeks ago

Scout Report: Benjamin Pavard | France’s Versatile Star

Jordan McElderry provides a scout report which analyses France and Stuttgart’s promising young defender, Benjamin Pavard In recent years, France...

Scout Report2 weeks ago

Scout Report: Diogo Dalot | Manchester United’s New Full-Back

Jose Miguel Saraiva provides a scout report which analyzes Manchester United’s new full-back, Diogo Dalot FC Porto’s achievements last season...

Scout Report2 weeks ago

Scout Report: Wendel | Sporting Club de Portugal’s new box-to-box diamond

Jose Miguel Saraiva writes a detailed scout report about Sporting Club de Portugal’s midfielder, Wendel. The 2018/19 pre-season has been...

Talent Radar1 month ago

World Cup 2018: Young Players Team of the Tournament

With an enthralling World Cup 2018 now completed, we an Outside of the Boot recognise the best young players under...

Talent Radar1 month ago

World Cup 2018: Talent Radar Top 5 Young Players

One of the most thrilling World Cup’s in memory came to an end with France lifting the Jules Rimet. While...

Tactical Analysis1 month ago

Tactical Analysis: Croatia 2-1 England AET | Tenacious Croatia punish England’s complacency

Charles Onwuakpa provides us with a tactical analysis of the World Cup semi final that ended Croatia 2-1 England. Croatia...

Tactical Analysis1 month ago

Tactical Analysis: France 1-0 Belgium | Set Piece Decides Game Dominated by Determined Defences

Siyang Xu provides us with a tactical analysis of the World Cup semi final that ended France 1-0 Belgium. France...

Tactical Analysis1 month ago

Tactical Analysis: Croatia 2-2 Russia | Modric and Rakitic make the difference

William Sinsky provides us with a tactical analysis of the World Cup quarter final that ended Croatia 2-2 Russia, with...

Talent Radar Award History

Subscribe via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe to this site and receive notifications of new posts by email.

More on Outside of the Boot