Football

Leao, Vinicius & Guendouzi.

Rising stars: Picking the best teenage XI currently playing across Europe

Published Add your comment

Football News
24/7

The world of football has seen some very exciting teenagers burst onto the scene in recent years.

Kylian Mbappe, Marcus Rashford and Trent Alexander-Arnold are just three names that lit up the game before their 20th birthday.

But with that trio and man other exciting youngsters now out of their teenage years, it's time to look at the next collection of sub-20 starlets that look set to drop our jaws once again.

So without further ado, here's our take on the best teenage XI currently playing across Europe.

GK - GIANLUIGI DONNARUMMA

It feels like the Italian goalkeeper has been around for years, but he's still just 19.

Being such an established goalkeeper at a club like AC Milan as a teenager is a real rarity and he's enjoyed a strong campaign between the sticks with the Rossoneri in 2018/19.

RB - DIOGO DALOT

With Alexander-Arnold and Achraf Hakimi both turning 20, the teenage right-back spot is filled by Manchester United's rising Portuguese star.

While game time for Dalot this season has been sparse, when he's taken to the field he's looked impressive - a real future star.

Dalot in action

CB - MATTHJIS DE LIGT

Probably the most established outfield player in the team, so much so that he's actually the captain of Ajax before his 20th birthday.

Barcelona, Juventus and pretty much all of Europe's elite are desperate to land the Dutchman's signature and he will cost a minimum of €60m.

CB - DAN-AXEL ZAGADOU

Zagadou in action

Both Dayot Upamecano (RB Leipzig) and Eder Militao (Porto) are into their 20's, so the centre-back spot has been handed to Borussia Dortmund's French teenage starlet.

Zagadou hasn't been a regular at times this season, but has still made 11 Bundesliga appearances in one of the most impressive side across Europe.

LB - RYAN SESSENGON

Like Donnarumma, it feels as if Fulham's versatile Englishman has been around forever, but he's still just 18.

Sessegnon celebrates

His first season in the Premier League hasn't been a huge success, but the talent is certainly still there and he has the potential to become one of the finest attacking left-backs in the game.

MID - MATTEO GUENDOUZI

One of Arsenal's few success stories of the season, with Guendouzi turning in a wonderfully composed display in the recent 3-1 loss away at Manchester City.

At just 19, the Gunners haven't had a teenage star this exciting since Cesc Fabregas and that turned out okay, didn't it?

Guendouzi on the ball

MID - NICOLAS ZANIOLO

If you missed Zaniolo's outrageous goal against Sassuolo a few weeks back, then we recommend you watch it straight away here.

The fleet-footed Italian midfielder is making all the headlines right now in an under-performing Roma side and is already attracting serious interest from Serie A Goliath's Juventus.

MID - KAI HAVERTZ

Havertz with Leverkusen

Bayer Leverkusen's languid playmaker has been on the scene for some time and 2018/19 really has been his year so far.

At just 19, he's already the key man at the Bundesliga side and has 10 goals to his name in all competitions from midfield - Havertz really is Germany's next big thing.

RW - JADON SANCHO

The fact he's still just 18 is quite remarkable. Sancho's rise to almost superstardom at Dortmund has been so enjoyable to witness, earning a deserved call-up to England's senior squad.

Sancho

Six goals and nine assists in just 20 Bundesliga games make him a seriously prolific teenager and the fact he's only going to get better is quite a scary thought - especially for defenders.

ST - RAFAEL LEAO

If you haven't kept an eye on Lille this season, then we recommend you do. They are second in the French top-flight and are playing some exciting football, with Leao breaking into the side at just 19.

The Portuguese has six goals in 13 Ligue 1 games and is looking the real deal alongside Nicolas Pepe and Jonathan Bamba - Leao has been dubbed the 'Portuguese Mbappe' by the BBC.

Leao celebrates

LW - VINICIUS JUNIOR

The fact the Brazilian is already a household name at 18 says it all really. Playing for Real Madrid regularly as a teenager is already a wonderful footballing achievement in itself.

Gareth Bale can't get in ahead of Vinicius right now and the former Flamengo man really does look like the next great player from the Selecao.

Topics:
Football
Arsenal
Kai Havertz
Gianluigi Donnarumma
Jadon Sancho
Diogo Dalot
Rafael Leao
Germany Football
England Football
Borussia Dortmund
AC Milan
Real Madrid
Manchester United

Article Comments

Read more

Report author of article

Please let us know if you believe this article is in violation of our editorial policy, please only report articles for one of the following reasons.

Report author

DISCLAIMER

This article has been written by a member of the GiveMeSport Writing Academy and does not represent the views of GiveMeSport.com or SportsNewMedia. The views and opinions expressed are solely that of the author credited at the top of this article. GiveMeSport.com and SportsNewMedia do not take any responsibility for the content of its contributors.

Want more content like this?

Like our GiveMeSport Facebook Page and you will get this directly to you.

Already Subscribed to Facebook, don't ask me again

Follow GiveMeSport on Twitter and you will get this directly to you.

Already Following, don't ask me again