Wilfrid Kaptoum and Aitor Cantalapiedra just the latest to debut under Luis Enrique

Wilfrid Kaptoum started in FC Barcelona's scoreless draw in the Copa del Rey on Wednesday. / MIGUEL RUIZ-FCB
The two FC Barcelona B team youngsters, who both played against Villanovense on Wednesday night, are the eighth and ninth players from the reserves to make their first team debuts under the current head coach.

Luis Enrique used the first Copa del Rey match of the season to debut a pair of youngsters from Barça B — Wilfrid Kaptoum and Aitor Cantalapiedra. Kaptoum, a midfielder from Cameroon, played 63 minutes, and was one of the game’s pleasant surprises, and was later replaced by Aitor, the Catalan forward. In seeing action on Wednesday, the pair became the eighth and ninth players since Luis Enrique’s arrival to make the leap to the first team, joining Masip, Sandro, Munir, Gumbau, Samper, Halilovic, Edgar Ié, who had already made their debuts.

Masip, Sandro and Munir, whio all debuted last season, are currently on the first team’s active roster. The goalkeeper Masip was promoted to the first team last season and was given his first opportunity to play in FC Barcelona’s 8–1 Copa del Rey victory over Huesca at Camp Nou.

Forwards Sandro and Munir both played key roles on the first team in last season’s treble winning campaign. Munir’s debut came in Barça’s season opener last year against Elche, during which he also scored his first goal. Sandro saw action for the first time the following week, scoring the game-winning goal — his first as well — against Villarreal.

Other debuts

Midfielder Sergi Samper got his feet wet as a starter in last season’s 1–0 Champions League group stage win over APOEL at Camp Nou. Edgar Ié played his first game in the Copa del Rey match at Huesca, subbing in for Mathieu. Alen Halilovic made his debut in the Copa del Rey as well, replacing Adama in the second leg of the last 16 against Elche.

Gerard Gumbau’s first minutes came as a starter in the return leg of that Elche tie in the Cup, and has also seen some time early on this season.