Iván Fresneda is an 18-year-old right back for Real Valladolid in La Liga who made his senior debut in the Segunda Division last season. This season he took advantage of an injury at his position and has strung together some admirable performances at a young age in a top five European league.
Fresneda is 182 cm tall and has a broad build built to withstand physicality. He is built quite mature for his age and takes advantage well. Athletically, his pace is more than decent for La Liga level, and he does well when changing direction. Fresneda has displayed good strength for his age, too.
The young full back is an impressive physical presence on defense using aggression and technique to get the job done. His instincts may be the best part as he can utilize that good pace to make interceptions chance-stopping efforts in cover. Technique-wise, he positions his body well on- and off-ball and flips his hips with his head on a swivel. Fresneda close space quickly and consistently takes good angles to cut off passes and get blocks. When pressing up on opponents his athleticism can overwhelm and is seldom called for fouls in that situation. His tackles are also calm and precise but still bring physicality. His physicality additionally aids him in winning aerial duels that he already has good technique in, a unique trait at fullback. Fresneda has do-it-all ability defending the wing, but he must keep working as quicker wingers have found ways to take advantage of him.
On the attack, Fresneda utilizes his dominant right foot with good passing range from the right flank and even mixes his left foot in at times. He has a good cross on him and creates chances well. fbref.com has Fresneda at 2.5 shot-creating actions per 90 which is not surprising given his vision and chance creation. Alongside that, the site records him at 3.46 progressive passes per 90, as well, reflecting the passing range and line breaking ability with his passes. On ball, Fresneda displays strength not just as distributor but when ball carrying, too. He is a confident dribbler that utilizes his pace to beat his marker.
Off ball, Fresneda is a great support runner in mixed runs, stretching the right flank with his pace well. Fresneda is good at controlling over the top and at his feet in space and has become a major part of the short build up as he has racked up more starts. In the short build up he is positioned more advanced in midfield wide right to link up play to the inverted wingers, often Ecuadorian Gonzalo Plata.
Tactically, Fresneda’s high work rate defensive style with offensive promise as a creator and ball carrier make him a solid fit for most La Liga clubs thus why he has become one of the better players in a struggling Valladolid side quickly. This balanced style has helped him make a quick rise and Fresneda more than deserves to keep his place in the starting XI after the international break. His solid tactical profile will make him sought after quickly.
Fresneda is already a quality La Liga standard right back and there is much time and room for him to grow. Valladolid is a great place for him to continue to develop, but with the way he has shone this early on, it is only a matter of time before a domestic giant tries to get their hands on him. His high ceiling and quality make him an asset that will be hard to hold onto for Valladolid, but playing time at this level will be crucial for Fresneda’s growth and a bigger club cannot offer what they can.